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The University of Southampton
Modern Languages and LinguisticsPart of Humanities

Jenny Cuffe MA Transnational Studies, 2013

Freelance Journalist

Jenny Cuffe's Photo

Hi, I'm Jenny Cuffe and I studied MA Transnational Studies within Modern Languages at the University of Southampton.

Instead of resting on my professional laurels and looking forward to retirement, I wanted a new challenge and Transnational Studies was just the thing. The multi-disciplinary approach - with elements of anthropology, linguistics, sociology and post-colonial studies - allowed me to pursue my own area of interest, which is migration, but offered an intellectual framework and stimulated new ways of thinking. I very much enjoyed the fellowship of students from across the globe and never felt out of place despite the huge age difference. Another real benefit of the course was the relationship with tutors who were accessible, enthusiastic and generous with their time.

It's the one I've been doing for the past 30 years and more. As a journalist working in radio I cover both national and international current affairs.   I have recently reported for BBC Radio 4 on Islamic fundamentalism in Egypt, the stolen Arab billions locked in British banks, and the threat of terrorism in Europe.

A journalistic investigation is not dissimilar to an academic one; both rely on thorough research, attention to detail, good interviewing skills and an open-minded approach. I am therefore hoping that some of my old skills have been refreshed and sharpened.  But I have also found out how much more there is to learn ... and that presents a further challenge.


My advice to new students

It's never too late to teach an old dog new tricks!

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