Invitation To The Voyage

Broaden your horizons



The world’s best 14 MBA Programs

 By Nour Abida 

Obtaining a degree from a top school is the first step towards a promising career.

We have analysed this year’s Financial Time MBA Ranking for any prospective students.

Harvard Business school
Harvard Business School

Unsurprisingly, the US dominates the ranking with 51 % of the best MBA programs in the world being located there, followed by the UK and China.

For the second consecutive year, the European Institute of Business Administration (INSEAD) leads the top of the ranking, with a staggering 82% of graduates finding employment within three months and earning an average of $167,657.  Based in France and with campuses in Singapore, the ranking indicates that graduating from there is likely to increase salary by 95%- of what they were earning before doing an MBA.

Stanford Graduate School of Business and the Wharton, University of Pennsylvania are second and third respectively.

The ranking highlights the highest jump for the American University of Notre Dame Mendoza which rose 16 places from 76 to 60. We can also notice the Sungkyunkwan University in South Korea climbing 15 places from 69 to 54.

The biggest decline was by the University of Strathclyde Business School in the UK and the University of Minnesota, Carlson both slipping 17 places in the ranking from 63 to 80 and from 71 to 88  respectively.

Source: Financial Time   //



Black activists tired of being overpoliced and underprotected

Shamell Bell’s Black Studies’ teacher told her she had to go out and “do something“. That was the start her activist career. As a core member of #BlackLivesMatter LA she was a keynote for the very first  #BlackHerstories. An event showcasing the struggles black woman encountered when fighting for right equalities.

Shamell Bell, #BlackLivesMatter activist

©Photo by Nour Abida

Shamell Bell, University of California Los Angeles doctorate student opened the evening with a speech explaining her struggle and how she became an advocate to the cause, she said  “My vision is to viciously attack the detrimental practices and policies that disadvantage the poor and people of color”.

Shamell Bell, Keynote for the night

©Photo by Nour Abida

This event was born from a collaboration between the Multicultural Affairs and the Equity Center to “detail the experiences and stories of Black women who continue to rewrite and change history”.They hope to add validation to the struggles that Black women face in creating change while providing a space for Black women to speak openly and unapologetically about their journey to freedom.

Also, when asked about the importance of the event and the reason why everyone should attend  Desiré Campusano, representative of the Women and Gender Equity Center said: “Black voices have always been important and key to telling the very real stories of the history of this nation and world, yet they have often been silenced.”

Around a hundred of people showed up for the evening, among them Dion Sparks who said: “I thought it was definitely an eye-opener, it was just like someone else speaking what I felt internally”. As a black women she felt like she could relate to other black women.

Brittany Coleman was also here to raise her voice regarding the recent tragic events the black community has been going through; the raise of murders committed by white policemen targeting black people.  She picked on the justice’s passivity and the poor law enforcement  when treating the case by telling the story of her brother and saying that “he was shot by someone who was  supposed to protect him”.

Jade Turner also emphasised on racism black people are subjected her piece #BlackGirlMagic “All Black girls and women matter and we are tired of being silenced, erased, pushed out, overpoliced and underprotected”.

One of the highlights of the night was during Jay Dent’s speech when she made a piece about being a black mother and what it involves. In other words, a black kid has more chances to be shot by the police than a kid coming for another community. The audience started to feel emotional, some people started to burn into tears when she said in her poem: “You want me to invest in something they’re going kill”.

Jay Dent

©Photo by Nour Abida 

The event detailed the experiences and stories of Black woman who dared to rewrite and change history along with the struggles they shared in the fight for justice. For that matter, Kel McCoy needed to share her story. After she was raped and abused she tried to commit suicide. She eventually went over it :”Because of my pain and everything  I have been through,  I was able to put it in my events and touch other women. I was able to talk to them and tell them that they are not alone, give them advice of how to leave when you don’t want to”.

Even if the event only featured female speaker, a few men showed up to listen to them like Taharka Anderson who said ” The event was magical, it reminded myself  that  black women had tremendously contributed to the forward flow of the humanity  in terms of the liberation movement across the world. They have continuously given their times and talent energy and lives in order to see the world becoming a better place”.

The even was very well received by the audience when  women took the floor to share their stories through the art of voice or poetry.

You can check the slideshow with the pictures of that evening below.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

©Photos by Nour Abida 


Temperature broke heat records in years

By Nour Abida

California has been affected by meteorological phenomenons causing extremely hot temperature  unusual for February.

Technically we are still in winter however this week the temperature reached the 90 degrees. Indeed on Feb 9, the heat broke the record of the hottest day in February since 1991.

Climatologist  Wiliam Patzert said “it’s a shock right here it’s going to be in the 80’s today Santa Anna winds and rather talking about rain we are talking about potentially fires”. Indeed the heat can be explained as being a repercussion of El Niño because it hit farther North than expected.

El Niño is among one of most discussed topics of the week.  On the one hand some people fear the climatological phenomenon will cause havoc as it did for the previous El Niño episode back in 1983.

On the other hand the weather makes some happy people tells Omar whowas surfing at the beach today, “For me El Niño is not such of an issue, it is usually too cold to surf; at this period with the combinaison it is just perfect”.

Omar Lopez, surfing at Huntington Beach


The surfers are not the only ones to enjoy the heat, for Sarah 21 it is the perfect weather to lay out by the pool  with some music and a book to read. However even if the weather seems to be pleasing there is still an inconvenience “this weather make me feel lazier than usual: it’s too hot to cook, do laundry or sport.”she said.

Shelby Dollim, 23, lives in Long Beach and she loves taking advantage of the weather: “I enjoy that weather so that I can take the roof off my convertible car and cruise along the PCH, it is  really cool I feel like I am in a movie with the roof down”.

Screen Shot 2016-02-11 at 17.19.35.png
Shelby Dollim

Also when we asked people about their favourite spot when the heat hits over the city, Vivan, 25,  recommends the Horny Corner  by the Leeway Sailing Centre. You can rent kayaks or go sailing. “This place makes me really happy because two years ago I watched someone’s stuff and he turned out to be a paddle instructor and to thank me he would give paddle lessons for free”.

Not everyone seems to be concerned by the heat in Long Beach however even if El Niño reached the coast yet it will according to climatologist Patzert.



California Faculty Association and Cal State Long Beach students participate in Chancellor White’s forum The Chancellor came to discuss student success through innovative teaching, but many had other concerns in mind.

Dozens of Cal State Long Beach students and faculty adorned red shirts that read “I don’t want to strike, but I will” as California State University Chancellor Timothy P.  White took questions regarding the ongoing negotiations with faculty at an open forum.

The event, held Thursday in the Walter Pyramid, was part of the chancellor’s tour of campuses across the CSU system. On Tuesday, White held an open forum at Cal State Los Anegeles.

The chancellor was greeted at both events by faculty members calling for a 5 percent increase in teacher salary. The California Faculty Association has been in negotiations with the CSU system over the faculty salary since last year, and some instructors used the opportunity the open forum presented to publicly address the chancellor.

“I really appreciate what you said about student and faculty interaction, but surely you know that that requires tenure-line faculty,” said Douglas Domingo-Forasté, the Long Beach Chapter president of the CFA. “It is a myth that we can handle what we have, much less the increase in the number of students that you’d like to see, with more and more lecturers and without supporting increases in tenure density.”

White called for faculty and students to hold the state government more accountable for the current budget problems in the CSU system. And even though the governor’s revised budget called for more money to the CSU universities, White explained why that money has not been used for faculty salary.

“It was a political process to get that augmentation above the governor’s proposal,” White said. “That political process was a lot of conversations as to what we [could use] that money for. And the only thing that had political legs was to increase access for Californians into the university, to improve our infrastructure and technology … and to do better in the student success arena.”

Student success was the topic of conversation in White’s opening address to the CSULB community.

White talked about technological innovations that would push student success to another level.

He said that technology is one of his main concerns when it comes to learning outcomes, and that he would like to “use technology wisely to take advantage of the value it can bring to the university.”

In addition to the forum, White was given a tour of the campus that included seeing the recently built smart classrooms and speaking with students in the Daily 49er newsroom.

Yet the negotiations with the CFA and the potential for a faculty strike seemed to dominate conversation around the chancellor. The CSU have offered faculty a 2 percent general salary increase, while the CFA is holding out for a 5 percent increase.

“We went out and got the CSU an extra $100 million dollars of funding  for this year and not one dime of that went to the faculty,” Domingo-Forasté said. “Sometimes I think that the chancellor’s office is stubborn enough to force us to strike.”

CSULB student Courtney Yamagiwa said she is worried that the quality of education could be diminished.

“My main concern is the quality of education that we get because of how the members of the faculty are treated, how little they get paid, how overworked they can be, how much the chancellor himself gets paid and how that reflects back on the education that we receive,” Yamagiwa said.

Chair and Professor of Chicano and Latino studies Jose Morena also attended the meeting to raise his concerns.

“I expect students will use their power of voting to influence the funding we get from our legislators,” Morena said. “We should build more CSUs and not more prisons.”

The chancellor’s visit to CSULB is part of an ongoing tour of the campuses in the CSU system.

Socialist Students to lead unfair housing campaign


Today Coventry University Socialists Society crashed the Hub for a Secret Protest.

They took advantage of the Housing fair taking place in the hub to do a demonstration.

The flag-mob protest took place while all the students letting agencies such as StudentLet and LetusLet were present in the hub to present their student accommodation in view of the next academic year.

They raised concern, looks like they achieved their goals because the information about the secret protest has been relayed on twitter and Facebook

Screen Shot 2015-03-16 at 20.59.11‘They exploit students on daily basis , they have to live in disgusting substandard  dilapidated houses’

‘ We  have a  clear strong message we are not longer gonna  stay exploited anymore this is our job, this is what we have to do’

‘We don’t just talk about it, we actually take action’ Says Kristian O’Sullivan , president of Coventry Socialist Society.

‘ It (the protest) provides an insight of the situation for students that will be having issues with unfair housing. We want to denounce the fact that  the university  supports landlords that are not giving quality housing for students and accomodation’ claims another member of the socialist society.

The university did not make any comments about the protest but it seems that they were not pleased with the chants resonating in the hub because they tried to stop their interventions as soon as it started.

Security guards trying to stop the students protesting

The Student Union feels ‘particularly concerned about our community of international students, who may be more vulnerable to falling prey to unscrupulous landlords’ To defend themselves they say how they succeeded into securing the return of more than 183 deposits last year for Coventry University students.

This protest raise the concern about student housing, indeed students represent a  major part in the city there are around 30 000 of them.

Joe, second year politics at student at Coventry University says  ‘Finding a decent house is a nightmare. When I move out for my first year of university I didn’t have heating for months. And I can tell you that you feel it, the worst is my landlord wouldn’t do anything to fix it’.

Krissie, third year law student says : ‘ I have experience now and I won’t be tricked again When it comes to student housing I prefer private landlords because Letting Agencies are evil’

At a time where Coventry University plans to spend over £125 millions to refurbish the city, maybe they should review their priorities and please their own students and prioritise the well-being of their students.

Coventry University had to face a lot of criticism recently, after MSc Mstudent, Ozeivo Andrew Akerele went missing. He disappeared since the 31st January but it is only few weeks ago that the university was mobilised.

A march and hope vigil were organised to support Ozi’s family in this ordeal.

At the moment the attention of the university is focused on Ozi, but the Student Union said they would fight against dodgy landlord and unfair housing campaign.

Check out the protest footage here 

Final reflection

Here we are, the end of uni.

When writing this post two feelings overwhelm me. One the one hand I’m happy to leave and go back home with my friends and my family and the sun especially. Yet on the other hand I’m a bit sad to leave, I know I’m going to be back but I have met a lot of people that were here only for one year and I might never see them again. Though we all said we would keep in touch and we will try to see each other again, we never really do it.

Anyway, for me uni was such a big change. I was told uni was going to be different from high school but I never thought the gap would be that deep.

to give you an idea, this is how I felt in high school :

berger troupeau


A little sheep among the cattle, with a shepherd guiding me through the path I had to take. He was behind me to help me with my choice, to give me piece of advice for my future and my work. He was there  all the  way to help me moving forward by securing each of my movement and making sure I wasn’t going away and that I carry on walking straight that I was taking the right path.



And this is how I felt at uni :

Caspar_David_Friedrich_-_Wanderer_above_the_sea_of_fogI felt like the man in Friedrich’s portait, Wander above a sea of fog.He is on his own contemplating a sea of fog, the fog here represents  what is unsure in other term the future.  He is starring at the unknown, indeed we know that something is going to happen, but we don’t know what.Though he is at the foreground, he is surrounded by the fogs, we can’t see his face meaning that he is too preoccupied by what is in front of him to address a look backward. We can also see that no one is here to help him to know what he has to do or even just to make a sign. The decision is entirely his, it’s man vs nature. For me it was the same :  it was literally me; me vs uni. When I first arrived I had absolutely no idea how I was going to cope with it. When  I arrived during the fresher week, it was like facing an ocean, the uni offered a lot of things, it was so wide i didn’t know where to begin. Lots opportunities were offered to me, I had to look deeply, take my time and chose wisely not to fall because I wanted to take the best of it and make the most of it by the same occasion.

So like the man in the portrait, this post will be my reflection of my year as a Fresher at Coventry university. I’m going to share with you my ups and downs and all the progress made during the academic year, what I could have avoid and what I could have done.

Journalism! yeah I said it, so far I haven’t regretted my choice. Journalism is everything I love : meeting new people, talk to them and create a relationship in order to have new point of views or share stories. This is amazing, actually it’s what I aim at in life! It’s the third time I change the city I’m living in, some people might  think that not having a stable life, a stable place to stay (because I live between France and England) is not ideal. Indeed in three years I went to college in three different city : Ormesson, Chichester and Coventry. Actually it’s everything but annoying. I got to meet new people everywhere I go.  It’s by travelling to these places and meeting all these marvellous personalities that I realised how big the world was that it was way too big only to stay in one place.  I still don’t know which career I would like to pursue in journalism however  I know I that i would like to be in this industry. Before coming to uni was not sure 100% what I wanted, I picked journalism because it seemed to be something wide. 

The course was not really what I expected from journalism. I was expected something very wide yet the only modules we had were about journalism and media. Said like that you may think : ‘What the hell are you expecting from Journalism and Media if it’s not journalism and media?!’ and  ‘French people are always complaining!’ But if I want to be a journalist one day, I  must have general knowledge and know about wider topics like politics or business or art etc.. I can’t be a journalist if I am not an expert in any other field. Indeed nowadays most of journalists  haven’t done any journalism school; they have politics or geography degrees :as long as they know their topics they don’t need any formation to write. You can write or you can’t, you can’t be taught how to write, lecturers can help you improving your stories but they are not here to teach  you root of the job because it’s something innate which flows in your vains. 

Skills: the course also helped me to develop different skills, from communication skills to technical skills. Now I am able to use  a vast array of softwares : Adobe audition, premiere pro, photoshop, final cut pro etc..  Master the technical side of the media industry was not easy, though we were told how to operate it was up to us to succeed or not. It’s how uni was different from high school,  lecturers were not here to make sure we trained, the choice was all ours. You can find all the different work I have done on my vimeo and youtube accounts . Now i feel quite confident for editing, what misses in my work and in my portfolio is deep stories about people and not just music or sports reviews. 

Coventry, to be honest at the beginning of the academic year I was wondering ‘What am I doing here?’. Though it’s huge city there’s not much to do, no actually there are some lovely parks (Coventry War Memorial park) when the weather it’s clement. IMG_2304











Organisation: my biggest failure in life has always been my lack of organisation. As far as I know I have never been able to be organised but this has change since this year. Indeed this year I managed to do my uni work along writing for 3 student websites ( Studentcom, Student365, Studentlifeblog), work as a retail assistant, have a radio show, write my two personal blogs (this blog and my cooking blog) , read and also hang out with my friends.  I was tired of being unorganised so one day i decided to change. I only failed once for an essay I hand in  an essay 10 minutes before the deadline. Having reflected I’m glad I have changed and I know I am able to be a person very organised person when I want. 

A new culture: I wasn’t born in England, I moved there two years ago. In my college year I was hanging out with French speaking people but for uni I told myself I was not going to make the same mistake because there’s no point travelling to another country to speak its own langage. The first moments were a little bit tough, but being with english people brought  me  so much.  I discovered things I didn’t know, I ate things I never ate before. OMG Porridge, that is so good it’s not very popular in France; since I have discover that I would have it every morning. God bless lemon curd!! a little spoon of this precious liquid will be enough to make someone smile. What else … GRAVY! I always have my granules in my cupboard. And something I would have never imagine, tea mixed with milk. The first time is proper weird but when we used to it it’ good. Hanging out with English lads also taught me new vocabulary, indeed in France schools we are taught very academic vocabulary and not everyday voc so it’s very handy when being with English people. I also discovered new bands like Haim, the 1975, the Neighbourhood, CHVRCHES. 

When I left France I had an utopic vision of England, but after having travelled I realised  everywhere was the same. You can find good and bad people everywhere, I still love England though don’t be mistaken. Actually one thing may be different from France, courtesy. People queuing before getting on the bus or the tube, we don’t see that often in France. 

I enjoyed writing this post because it was like a review of my first year of journalism at Coventry University. During this year I acquired experience and technique regarding media production but also regarding the human side. I’m still learning and will learn forever . I’m sorry if this post might seem long and tedious to read but I needed to take the time to express myself  and all the feelings. To conclude, I would say that I have taken all my time to settle down at uni in order to avoid loosing time and I’m happy with all the choices I have made so far. 

Varsity (Sport News)

As a member of the Source society, I covered Varsity : a  sport competition between Coventry and Warwick Universities. The TV Package I made was not for uni but for my extra curricular activities.

To do my work I had to go there and to book the equipment I needed at the Media Loan Shop:  a camera (canon 650D), a tripod and an edirol. I had some problems with the edirol because usually to film an interview, you would take the sound and the image separately but for some reasons the edirol didn’t record any of the sounds. So for editing I had to make do. The weather conditions were not ideal:  it was raining, the wind was blowing . I had to manage the sound, the video, and the equipment.

Evolve (OOV)

An OOV must be little package (less than one minute) which does not include any plan of the journalist, only still images and videos with voiceover commentating it.

When I have done it , I wasn’t very familiar with the specific requirements of this genre of news. Having looked at my work and step backed, I think that it’s a little bit long because an OOV should be between 30 and 40 seconds. Furthermore, an OOV must contain still images and I haven’t included that in mine. The purpose of TV is to bring a story to life with live reporting; though some elements are missing we can find some good ones.

I also have to say that it was one of my first go with the loan shop equipment, I had an EOS650 D camera and it was one of the first time I was using it, so I needed to get used to it, I think we can see it for example with the lights settings.

This first OOV was also very interesting on a practical point; it was the first time I got to edit, on my own. The first issue was the voiceover, at the beginning it was quite difficult to cope with my own voice. Then the practical part, I hadn’t really been trained before so I just discovered the software ‘Audobe Premiere Pro’ on a go, the aim is to grab the attention of the viewer, to whet his appetite. It’s storytelling, in an online article you would use narrative to articulate your message, here you would use images( symbols, icon) to convey a message. To make my OOV I have followed advice some advice I found in The Broadcast Journalism Handbook written by Hudson, G. & Rowlands, S. (2007:308-312)

  •  Edit first with your brain, then your ears, ten your eyes
  • Check your levels
  • Use mixes and wipes sparingly in news
  • Be wary of fading to black
  • Avoid jump cuts
  • Don’t cut on camera move
  • Cross fade sound between shots if necessary
  • Try using audio to introduce speakers before you see them
  • Feature natural sound always uses background sound.
  • Laying down the pictures before   voice over usually produces better films
  • Sometimes you need to record you VO   before you see the pictures
  • You need to know the pictures before scripting.


The editing interesting, it made me question about ethics. Throughout all the evening the musicians were very kind with me, asking me drinks and food. But I didn’t accept. A journalist must be impartial and to biased. It might seems very early to question about this topic but the sooner is the best. The reason why I refused all their treatments was because I was afraid that it could compromise my judgement. I referred to Keeble Ethics for Journalists (2009), indeed according to him, journalist are the mirror of the society this is the reason why we must act with objectivity, neutrality, impartibility and balance. My story wasn’t deep enough to touch the ethics editing but it’s a major concern, because while editing you can make anybody saying something he didn’t meant. For example, the footage of the current Algerian president Abdelaziz Bouteflika, after analysing the sequences of him, we realise that during the editing some plans have been added to each other to give the impression that he as actually moving although he is not. It’s a technique to make his people believe that he’s not weak physically and that he can be in measure to have the power.


Britain’s Got Talent heads in Birmingham



Last week the four judges of the Talent competition stopped by the Birmingham, the second biggest city in England.

Throughout the year I have experienced what it was to be a real journalist. Being a journalist demands to be spontaneous and to seize an opportunity when it comes and this day it’s exactly what I have done.

My friend came from Belgium to visit me so I brought him to Birmingham to show him the city, we had a great day we visited the canal, the aquarium etc.. At the moment we were about to leave for the station, I told him I was going to show him the library and when we arrived on the place I was astonished : hundreds of people were queuing, and I was assuming they must have been standing there for ages as they all seem very excited to entre in the ICC Birmingham. So didn’t hesitate one second and I asked those people what they were going to see. I discovered they were here for one reason, they were  about to attend the audition for Britain’s Got Talent. It was a golden opportunity for me, it was definitely going to be a story for my blog.

So here’s a little OOV I made with the footage I got that day.


<p><a href=”″>OOV Britain’s got talent</a> from <a href=”″>Nour Abida</a> on <a href=””>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>





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