For ELLE's September issue, we've approached things a little differently.
Teaming up with the Social Mobility Commission, we invited 12 students from across the UK to become part of the magazine's creative process.
Over several weeks, the students collaborated with us on everything from cover images to layouts, had a catch up with our cover star – model, activist and Gurls Talk founder Adwoa Aboah – received masterclasses on all things journalism and magazine production and were each paired with a mentor from Team ELLE for the foreseeable future.
Plus, inside the issue, Aboah penned an 'anti-graduation' letter for this year's class of 2020 who have found their future plans and access to education thwarted by the global coronavirus pandemic.
Commencing with the September issue, ELLE pledges its commitment to opening the door for more and more young people of varied backgrounds to enter the media landscape. As our Editor-in-Chief Farrah Storr explains in the issue's editor's letter, ELLE looked to overshadowed corners of the UK (from Stoke-On-Trent to Sunderland) to find our brilliant mentees, where opportunities are statistically at their scarcest, particularly for those leaving education.
The result of this collaboration was our brilliant September issue, including a subscriber cover actually designed by one of our students, Gaby Reynolds. Assisted by numerous Zoom calls over several weeks, the students - Maria Isahac, Alexandra Palade, Esther Simuene, Gaby Reynolds, Malina Jitaru, Kelsey Hendricks, Megan Leigh Ross, Libby Austin, Wisdom Charis, Amy Clorley, Erin Haley and Anya Kidde-Hansen - gave their valued feedback, thoughts and opinions, resulting in the production of a landmark issue.
To see how the students had an impact on our issue, and exclusive behind-the-scenes moments from our cover shoot in Peckham, south London, watch our making of the issue video, above.
ELLE's September issue hits newsstands today (13 August).
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