Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

School of Politics and International Studies

Joe Barnsley

BA Politics and Parliamentary Studies | 2006 - 2009

Photo of Joe Barnsley

Joe is a 2nd year BA Politics and Parliamentary Studies student and the host of 'Political Animal', a politics show on Leeds Student Radio.

What made you decide to do BA Politics and Parlamentary Studies?

The work experience element -- Politics and Parliamentary Studies students spend a year in either Westminster, the US Congress or the Canadian Parliament -- was really the main thing.

What have you enjoyed most about the course so far?

I've enjoyed meeting like-minded people and making some really good friends.

Tell us about your favourite lecturer.

Dr Nick Robinson for his energy and enthusiasm. He really makes lectures an interactive experience.

How did you first get involved in the Student Radio Station?

As a jobbing volunteer, really. I was on the sports show reading out football scores, and first on the politics show as a Labour Party rep resentative, and, you know, if you get involved, it can lead to better things because I host both those shows now!

Now that you are host, what's your vision for Political Animal?

Well, we really want the show to reflect the really active political scene on campus. I mean, every time I go into the Union, there's someone outside stumping for their cause and it's that enthusiasm that we want to get on air because LSR should be a really important part of campus life, like the paper is.

How do you do that then?

The parties send representatives up every week. That lets us talk about the national issues, and debate them quite passionately!

But the new thing this year is to get the political societies involved. Every week, we're going  to interview a chair or spokesperson for a society that wants to get their message out – profile them, so to speak. We record these the day before so the pressure's off and we can edit all my mistakes out! Plus, we're listing all the events in the week – it's another form of publicity. Mostly though, we just want listeners' views texted and e-mailed in. It adds so much!

Is there anything you would change about POLIS?

I think we could do with more guidance on reading. I mean, that's most of the work but it can be pot luck as to what you get. A few pointers on what stuff is theoretical, what's more accessible etc. could be really helpful.

What do you plan to do when you graduate?

I don't know really. I guess it depends how much I enjoy the year out but I think I'd like a break from politics to do something in the community for a while.

Political Animal, Tuesdays 12-1pm www.lsrfm.com.

If you want your society profiled, want to help make the show or just share your views, email politicalanimal.

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