I am now officially a university student (indeed, the last time I went into a shop, all I bought was chocolate biscuits), and I love it. Politics at A-level was fantastic, but being able to study ideas and then apply them across the globe on my international relations courses is both intellectually stimulating and incredibly useful to the aspiring young journalist. Part of the fun of being a social science student is learning what other people think and coming to understand how they see the world. As we are often told, there is no right answer to questions like “what is power?” or “who should have nuclear weapons, if anyone?” The point is to listen, debate, and form your own opinion in a reasoned way.
This is in stark contrast to what we see in the realm of general political debate—where The Sun is still the most read paper, despite (or maybe because of?) the horror that is Page 3. The media’s attention is not on the Conservative concept of human nature nor Labour’s leftward shift, but instead on the “granny tax” and the net migration figure. You have to look extremely carefully at the broadsheets’ op-ed pages, or purchase a specialist magazine, to find the interesting, thought-provoking stuff.