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English for Journalists

- By Elisabeth Ulla Uksnøy and Christina Hanson


"THE DUTCH SYSTEM TREATS ME DIFFERENTLY"

It’s a windy day in Amsterdam. The rain is drizzling slightly, but not so much that it bothers anyone. Under the bridge in Vondelpark, in shelter off the wind, a small group of men have gathered around a bag of clothes. One of them is carefully picking up pieces of fabric that he hands out to the others. A man with a black cap holds a pair of blue pants up against his hips as to see if they’re his size. Another one takes off his brown, worn out shoes and tries on a pair of light coloured new ones, but he can’t seem to get his feet to fit in them.

Almost every people biking or walking by is taking a look at the men gathering around the small bag, but the men themselves doesn’t seem to notice. They don’t approach the pedestrians, not even when they are walking in the middle of the men’s conversation. Well, not until a man with a sixpence on his head enters their little cave. His black beard with grey spots in it looks freshly cut and his shoes are clean and shiny. He politely greats all the men under the bridge while he’s throwing a water bottle up in the air before catching it again, a movement that shows off a small coffee stain on his neatly tucked in white shirt.

His name is Faical El Hakim. He is originally from Morocco, but he moved to Amsterdam with his family when he was little. When he was 18, he got his Dutch passport. “It varies from situation if I identify as Dutch or Moroccan”, he says, but right now, he’d rather be a Moroccan. For him, under the bridge has been a place to hang out in between his appointments in the last weeks. He is currently working on collecting money so that he can be able to work on his art and volunteer around Europe, but he doesn’t feel like he has the support that he needs in Amsterdam.

El Hakim is not happy with how the Dutch system has treated him lately. Earlier this fall, he spent four days in prison because of a tweet the court found threatening. El Hakim is an artist and tells the tweet was a drawing of the Dutch politician Geert Wilders surrounded by birds. “Wilders posted a drawing of me first that I felt threatened by, but I didn’t go to court with that. If someone has a problem with me, they should come to me and we can talk about it”, he says. He feels it is unfair that he was punished for something he thought of as art, and which he says was

never meant as a threat, while the other person walked free. “The Dutch system treats me differently because I am not originally from here”.

He also claims the Dutch government got him deported from Turkey. El Hakim says he was working there driving an ambulance as a volunteer a few years back. “I was just trying to help people and they put me on the terrorist list for no reason”. As for now, he doesn’t trust the Dutch government and system, and is working on getting a proper Moroccan passport.

His biggest fear however, is that the Dutch system will treat his children badly because of their father’s background. He has two children; they’re eight and ten years old. “I don’t want them to end up like me”, he says as he quickly gets up from the rock he has been sitting on. “I’m going to flip the country upside down if anyone ever touches my children”.

PODCAST ASSIGNMENT


A HOME UNDER THE BRIDGE

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Journalism and Society

​2ND. VERSION

The bond between the students at Weaver Hall in Gainesville, Florida grew when the hurricane Irma hit the city last Monday. Scared and unsure what to expect, students from all 4 levels in the building got together in the basement during the storm: “The memories that we forged during the Hurricane helped bringing Weaver closer together” one of the students, Nipuna Weerasinghe says.

By Christina Hanson

Weaver Hall in Gainesville, Florida. Photo: Wikipedia.com/creativecommons

Nipuna Weerasinghe, 21, was one of the students staying at the student hall last Monday when the hurricane hit the city: “Everyone in our dorm were playing games, watching movies and talking in the lounge areas throughout the weekend of the storm”, Nipuna says. “It was tough being far away from my family, but when an event like a hurricane happens, it brings people closer together as well”.

Nipuna is an exchange student from Sydney, Australia where he studies a bachelor degree in Software Engineering/Finance at the University of New South Wales. On August 18th, Nipuna moved to Gainesville, Florida to study Computer Science at the University of Florida. He lives on campus, at Weaver Hall, which is a dorm for both exchange students and first year American students.

Only a few weeks after Nipuna arrived in Florida he heard about the hurricane: “It was all over the news”, Nipuna says. This increased fear because most people were unsure what to expect.

“I feel as though I know every single person in Weaver now and that would have only been possible because of the Hurricane”, Nipuna says after the hurricane hit the city last Monday. During the storm, students from different floors got to spend a lot of time together. “We had movie nights where we did a marathon of popular movies like Harry Potter. Some students played Ping Pong with each other, some played card games like Uno and Big2 and others played

board games like Monopoly and Werewolf. Participating in these activities helped grow the bond between students who I had not met before”, Nipuna says.

The university informed the students that staying at the university was the safest option. The dorm is a brick building which makes it very stable and able to withstand strong winds. Therefore, Nipuna and around 100 other students decided to spend their time during the hurricane in their lounge room at the dorm. “A lot of students were afraid because their family was from South Florida and they were anxious of the damage the storm was going to do to their homes”, Nipuna says.

Gainesville is above sea level and is located in the north central part of Florida. This location makes it safer than most of the coastal cities like Miami, Florida Keys, Naples and Tampa. Therefore, Nipuna didn’t pay much attention to the hurricane. However, a few days prior to the hurricane hitting Florida, they increased the threat levels and predicted that the eye of the storm might go straight through Gainesville.

The hurricane hit a 6am on Monday morning. Most of the students slept through it without even waking up. There was a bit of wind and the lake next to the campus flooded, but most of the campus was unaffected. Most of the debris from the hurricane has been cleaned up by now and the students in Gainesville have returned to their normal lifestyle.

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Journalism and Society

1ST. VERSION

It brought the students at Weaver Hall in Gainesville, Florida closer together when the hurricane Irma hit the city last Monday.

Weaver Hall in Gainesville, Florida. Photo: Wikipedia.com/creativecommons

Nipuna Weerasinghe, 21, was one of the students staying at the student hall last Monday when the hurricane hit the city.

Nipuna is an exchange student from Sydney, Australia where he studies a bachelor degree in Software Engineering/Finance at the University of New South Wales. On August 18th, Nipuna moved to Gainesville, Florida to follow a semester in Computer Science at the University of Florida. He lives on campus, at Weaver Hall, which is a dorm for both exchange students and first year American students.

Only a few weeks after he arrived in Florida he heard about the hurricane: “It was all over the news and we were also informed by our university through mail”, Nipuna says.

The initial reaction of Nipuna wasn’t fear: “Most of the American students who have lived in Florida all their life said that Gainesville is usually safe when it comes to hurricanes”, Nipuna says.

Gainesville is above sea level and is in the north central part of Florida. This location makes it safer than most of the coastal cities like Miami, Florida Keys, Naples and Tampa. Therefore, Nipuna didn’t pay much attention to the hurricane. However, a few days prior to the hurricane hitting Florida, they increased the threat levels and predicted that the eye of the storm might go straight through Gainesville. “This increased fear because most people were unsure what to expect”, Nipuna says.

The roads were congested because most of the population from the Florida Keys and Miami were making their way up to the north and out of the state leading up to the hurricane.

“Students with cars filled their cars with petrol as soon as they could because petrol was sold out in all of Florida”, Nipuna says.

The university informed the students that staying at university was the safest option. “The dorm is a brick building which makes I very stable and able to withstand strong winds”, Nipuna explained. Therefore, Nipuna and around 100 other students decided to spend their time during the hurricane in their lounge room at the dorm. “A lot of students were afraid because their family was from South Florida and were anxious of the damage the storm was going to do to their homes”, Nipuna says.

The bond between the students grew during the time of the hurricane: “Everyone in our dorm were playing games, watching movies and talking in the lounge areas throughout the weekend of the storm”, Nipuna says. “It was tough being far away from my family, but when an event like a hurricane happens, it brings people closer together as well”.

The hurricane hit a 6am on Monday morning. Most of the students slept through it without even waking up. There was a bit of wind and the lake next to the campus flooded, but most of the campus was unaffected. Most of the debris from the hurricane has been cleaned up by now and the students in Gainesville have returned to their normal lifestyle.

By Christina Hanson

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Journalism and Society

​2ND. VERSION

By Christina Hanson

Photo: Christina Hanson

Why do people from different cultures think and act like they do, and why are there such big differences? This is one of Jing de Visser’s favourite questions. To be able to answer this question, Jing wants to travel around the world and work as a journalist in and with different cultures.

Jing, 21, is a Dutch bachelor student in Communication and Multimedia Design at Avans University in Breda. When Jing was one year old her parents adopted her from China and she is now living in Eidhoven. As a part of her bachelor degree, Jing has decided to study International Journalism at Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences for a semester.

Her journalistic interest is connected to her curiosity in cultural differences: “I’m curious about cultural backgrounds,” she says. “I want to explore how the place you grow up can influence your future thoughts and actions”.

If you ask Jing, countries are just places on a map and it’s us, the people, who create the borders. That is why Jing wants to explore the differences between cultures. She wants to find out why they can be so big, and she wants to share the knowledge she finds with the world.

As a student in Communication and Multimedia Design, Jing is not only curious when it comes to telling stories about cultural differences, she also wants to stay updated on the growth of digital media:

“In the future, I want to be a grandparent who understands technology”, she says laughing.

Do elderly people follow the growth of digital media? And do they know how to find their digital mailboxes? These are some of the questions Jing asks herself. In her opinion, the elderly in this age struggle to follow the technologies of digital media and that’s a problem. As an example, Jing mentions fake news:

“One of the latest additions in the digital world is the spread of fake news,” Jing says. “[…] a lot of people, like myself, don’t pay enough attention to them.”

Therefore, Jing want to find out what it means to let people believe something that is not necessarily true, and how it influences the world.


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English for Journalists

Photo: wikipidia.com/creativecommons

As you enter the bar, you are met by a spicy but sweet smell. Your sight is dazzled by a heavy cloud of smoke and your hearing is weakened by the heavy sound of music flowing out of the speakers: “In your head, in your head – Zombie, zombie, zombie-ie-ie …”. Except from the purple, pink and green neon lights making it possible for you to look around, the lighting is dark. All the tables are full: A group of older men in suits are laughing at one of the tables in the left-hand corner, a man with a black, shiny ponytail is enjoying a beer at another and at the dancefloor a group of girls in high heels and tight dresses are dancing slowly back and forth.

In the middle of the room there is a stage and an empty bar chair with a microphone laying on it. A woman in leather pants with squared glasses, a tight ponytail and a tattoo on the ankle walks on stage. She picks up the microphone and sits down. A rhythm of music start flowing out of the speakers. “Are you ready for some Reggae?”, the woman asks almost screaming. A sudden sound of Bob Marley’s lyrics from “I shot the sheriff” makes everyone turn their heads against the stage. As the woman sings, she stands up with a satisfying smile and starts moving her butt from site to site. As the songs ends the woman invites two older guys to the stage and hands them the microphone. As they start signing, the woman turns her attention to the bar and the red-haired girl without makeup behind the bar serving beers. The girl looks up and their eyes meet. With at self-assurance, the woman from the stage walks over to the girl: “So… you are up next?”. The girl breathes deeply as she looks at the stage. “Okay…” the girl says nodding. With an unsecure smile, she hands the woman her apron.


At Leidseplein you’ll find The Bulldog, one of Amsterdam’s first and most popular coffeeshops. The story of The Bulldog starts in 1974, when Henk de Vries inherited his father’s sex shop in the red-light district. Henk soon transformed the sex shop into a coffeeshop, and with inspiration from his dog, Joris, he named the place The Bulldog. Today the Bulldog has expanded and there is now five Bulldog Coffeeshops placed in the city of Amsterdam.

Our story takes place at Bulldog Havri, at Leidseplein Square. Here you meet the singer, Saskia and her co-worker, Melanie, both working at The Bulldog. Saskia entertains the guest from the stage while Melanie serves beers from behind the bar. Melanie dreams of becoming a singer, but her lack of self-confidence stands in the way. This is the reason why she works behind the bar at The Bulldog: “I love singing, but I’ve always felt uncomfortable singing in front of people”, Melanie says, “Here I have the chance to challenge myself”.

Saskia welcomes Melanie to the stage: “This I my lovely colleague Melanie”, she says pointing at Melanie standing next to the stage, “She is going to sing one of her favourite songs for you”. Melanie steps up upon the stage and takes the microphone. Even though she is a quite tall girl, she suddenly looks short. Her eyes are facing her feet as she starts to sing. A fragile but beautiful voice fills the room as she starts singing Journey’s song ‘Don’t stop Believin’. As the song reaches the refrain and the beat drops she suddenly looks up at the crowd raising the volume of her voice: “Strangers waiting, up and down the boulevard …”. She starts dancing. Even though her moves are a little clumsy, your eyes only notice her face and her smile. Her eyes sparkles as she perfectly finishes the song. Even though people are waiting in line to take over the stage, Melanie continues and sings two more songs. As she steps down from the stage, little drops of sweat sparkles on her forehead and she breathes heavily a couple of times.

The Bulldog gives Melanie the opportunity to become more confident on stage, but it’s not only the location and the possibility to stand on the stage that makes her self-confidence grow: “Saskia is a great inspiration for me. She challenges me and she helps me move forward” Melanie says, “I’m still not confident enough yet, but I’m definitely getting there.”

By Christina Hanson

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Journalism and Society

1ST. VERSION 

By Christina Hanson

Photo: Christina Hanson

Why do people from different cultures think and act like they do, and why is there such big differences? That is some of Jing de Visser’s favourite questions.

Jing is a bachelor student in Communi-cation and Multimedia Design at Avans University in Breda. As a part of her bachelor degree, Jing has decided to follow a semester in International Journalism at Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences. She wants to be able to travel around the world and work in and with different cultures:

“I’m curious about cultural backgrounds,” she says smiling. “I want to explore how the place you grow up can influence your future thoughts and actions”.

If you ask Jing, countries are only places on a map and it’s us, the people, who created the borders.

Jing wants to explore why there is so big differences between different cultures, and she wants to share the knowledge she finds with the world and to educate people

Jing wants to know everything about this topic, but she is not only curious about different cultures, she also wants to stay updated on the enlargement of the digital medias:

“In the future, I want to be a grandparent who understands technology”, she says.

Jing thinks that present elderly struggles to follow the technologies of digital medias. Do elderly people follow the new additions? Do they know how to find their digital mailboxes? And do they know about fake news? That is some of the questions you might ask.

“One of the latest additions in the digital world is the spread of fake news,” Jing says. “[…] and a lot of people, like myself, don’t pay enough attention to them, and that is why it is such a big problem


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English for Journalists

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


CONTACT:

Christina Hanson
International Student
+45 41 27 66 00
Hansonc@hva.nl

Roxanne Hendricksx
International Student
+32 497 76 36 79
Roxanne.hendrickx@hva.nl

Sexual issues with Dr. Ruth

London: 12:00, 29 September 2017 – Women can learn about current sexual issues and how to obtain gratifying sexual relationships through respect for self and others together with DR. Ruth Westheimer at the Woman to Woman Conference “Harmony in Your Life”. The event takes place this coming Saturday at The Peabody Hotel, London.

Psychosexual therapist DR. Ruth Westheimer, nationally known from television and radio will be presenting the luncheon keynote address. The conference will also include ten exiting workshops presented by area professionals, such as “Why does he do that”, “Our sexual selves” and “Boredom in the Bedroom”. From the various of options, each conference participant can choose to participate in three workshops.

Participate in the Woman to Woman Conference sponsored by Doctors Health Care Group and grasp the opportunity for growth, networking and having fun while supporting children & women – participating in the conference costs $35 per person and the profit will benefit the Palmer Hospital for Children & Women

The Conference will be held at The Peabody Hotel this Satur­day from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 pm. For tickets contact Rosalie Bledsoe 875-6682. ­


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English for Journalists

The abandoned siblings, Hansel and Grethel, returned home safe and sound after having been left behind in the Schwarzwalder woods four weeks ago by their parents.

By Christina Hanson

Found alive: Hansel and Grethel. Photo: Pixabay.com/creativecommons


After four weeks in the woods, an old woman living in a candy house in the middle of the forest found them.

The parents had no other choice
The abandonment of Hansel and Grethel supposedly happened because of financial problems in the family: “We have had financially problems for years”, the father explained. “We couldn’t even feed our own children”.

As a solution, the parents chose to take their children to the forest and leave them there. Apparently, they couldn’t see any other solutions: “Otherwise we would all have starved”, Hansel and Grethel’s mother said crying.

They tried to find their way home
Hansel and Grethel tried to find their way home by making a path of bread for them to follow. The night before the children were abandoned in the forest, Hansel overheard a conversation between his parents: “I heard my parents talking about leaving us there".


Accordingly, Hansel was well prepared the next morning. He filled his pockets with bread and as they walked in to the forest he dropped little pieces of bread every now and then – creating a path for them to follow back home.

But it didn’t work out the way Hansel planned: “Birds must have eaten the bread”, he said. “The path was not there so we couldn’t find our way home”.

A new home
The children are taken into custody by child protection services. “We will try to find a new home for Hansel and Grethel as soon as possible”, says Wilhelm Grimm, one of the spokespersons from the child protection services in Germany.

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