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Leiden through the student lens: Student Loïs de Jong wins Leiden Media Contest

A TikTok by student Loïs de Jong from Leiden University in which Leiden sparkles as a student city won the final of the Leiden Media Contest on 13 June. According to the jury, the film was ‘the most appealing for today’s generation of current and prospective students – it includes nearly all elements of student life − and the most original.’

The winner receives 1,500 euros and her film will be used to promote Leiden as a student city.

The Media Contest final was held in Leiden student nightclub De Wibar, which was transformed for the occasion into a movie theatre. Entrants could make a film of Leiden as their student city. The jury comprised a school student, a university student, a former student, the culture broker and representatives from Leiden University and the municipality.

The Media Contest is the initiative of the StudentStad Strategic Partnership of the MASCQ student associations (Minerva, Augustinus, SSR-Leiden, Catena and Quintus), the student rowing associations Njord and Asopos De Vliet, the Local Chamber of Associations (PKvV), the Municipality of Leiden and Leiden&Partners.

TikToks, vlogs and videos

The last edition of the contest was held four years ago when it was still known as the ‘Film Contest’. This time the students were free to choose their media. What previously had to be a short film could also be a TikTok series, vlog or the like in this edition. The theme of ‘Leiden Lifestyle’ was open to (a student) interpretation. Students from the PKvV, who also had a big role in organising the event, were the presenters for the evening. The entries included a short film à la Wes Anderson, a black and white film, a vlog, a TikTok series and a series of portraits of Leiden students.

Leiden in all its greatness

After some deliberations, the jury reached a verdict. ‘The winner, Loïs de Jong, shows Leiden throughout the year, in its greatness at Leidens Ontzet and more, but also the intimacy of a group of friends in the park. The form is very now and the film is the complete package from start to finish’, said the jury. Loïs de Jong could not be there in person to receive the prize but was dialled in on her mobile. She compiled her TikTok from previous posts about Leiden. Second prize went to the video Mijn Leidsche Leven by Ember and Jacco, and third prize to the TikTok by Bilou, Sander & Duco. They received 750 and 250 euros respectively.

Media Contest at Wibar

Beautiful city

The organisers hope that this edition will be the start of many more entries in years to come. ‘Now nearly every student is a TikToker, vlogger or influencer, we wanted to give this creative side of students a stage. How great is it to let students promote their own city?’ said Sophia Wouda, from the PKvV board. And has that goal been achieved? Jury member and school student Bas is still deliberating between Leiden and Amsterdam but the films seem to be tipping the balance towards Leiden. ‘It’s a really beautiful city’, said Bas, who will take a gap year after his school exams.

Watch the winning video

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Students and city

The StudentenStad (student city/students and city) strategic partnership came about in 2015 as a unique collaboration between the city of Leiden and its students. In a city with tens of thousands of students, the partnership has led to their talent being used to organise events and discuss societal issues. All activities seek to create connections with the citizens of Leiden. The activities vary from Resuscitation Day to the Longest Leiden Table.

Photos: Simone Both

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