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Mamobo Ogoro is a PhD student at UL and founder of Gorm Media Mamobo Ogoro is a PhD student at UL and founder of Gorm Media

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Why I Love my Job by Mamobo Ogoro, founder of Gorm Media

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Mamobo Ogoro is a PhD student at UL and founder of Gorm Media

Why I Love my Job by Mamobo Ogoro, founder of Gorm Media

By I Love Limerick Correspondent Ann Mc Donald 

Mamobo Ogoro Former UL Post Graduate, Mamobo Ogoro. Picture: Alan Place

Former UL Post Graduate, Mamobo Ogoro. Picture: Alan Place

Mamobo Ogoro is a PhD student in Applied Linguistics and Psychology at the University of Limerick and founder of Gorm Media. She is also the co-chair of the Ethnic Diversity Forum and Board Member of the Lime Tree Theatre. Gorm Media is an impact-focused digital media company based in Ireland that creates common ground through conversations that matter. 

What was your childhood like and where did you grow up?

My family moved to Ireland from Nigeria when I was 4 and I grew up in Enniscorthy Co. Wexford. My childhood was interesting to say the least. Coming from a single-parent working class migrant household, we did not have much which made me and my siblings mature pretty quickly, but I wouldn’t have it any other way, because that is where my resilience comes from. 

What made you decide to study Applied Linguistics and Psychology?

Growing up I often felt out of place and didn’t feel like I belonged anywhere. I have countless negative experiences of racism and exclusion due to my migrant background. Being the curious person that I am, I always wondered why people discriminate and why people hate. So I pursued an undergraduate & masters degree in Psychology in UL, where I fell in love with Social Psychology (The study of human behaviour in groups). After graduating with a first class honours in UL, I was offered a place as the first Sanctuary PhD Fellow at UL where my research looks at social psychological phenomena and its use in society and media through language (hence the applied linguistics). My research work is co-supervised by Socio-Linguist Prof. Mairead Moriarty & Political Psychologist Dr. Anca Minescu. 

Why did you decide to create Gorm Media?

Like a lot of socially driven initiatives, I created Gorm out of frustration. While I had the idea for over 2 + years, I did not have the courage to go forward with it until 2020. Why? Because at that time in Ireland, we as a society were going through a transformation when it came to being more aware about social issues (e.g. Racism, BLM, COVID-19) and a lot of it was being spearheaded by young people. But while we were raising awareness, there was a growing division which I saw in society where its conversations were becoming more polarised. So I decided to create Gorm Media as a digital platform where we can discuss these issues (from all perspectives) and try to find what unites us, rather than divides us.  

Can you tell us a little bit about Gorm Media?

Gorm Media, is a start-up digital media company with a social impact. Our mission is to unify communities by having young people use their voice. With a vision to spark a movement of unity and shared understanding, our content aims to create common ground by having conversations that matter and delves into social issues and popular culture, namely youth empowerment, and diversity & inclusion. We believe that open conversations drive unity and by having conversations that matter (highlighting nuanced stories and experiences of our community), we believe we can unify. Follow us on social media: @gormmedia

What has it been like working on the company?

Working as a start-up founder has been the most exciting yet scariest thing I have done in my life. Everyday I learn something new and I am forever grateful to those who I have met and supported along the way. Coming from a more slow paced academic background into the world of entrepreneurship, I enjoy how the fast paced things can go. While there has been (and will be) hiccups along the way we continuously hold tight to our mission. 

What challenges have you faced in getting to where you are now?

The challenges we face in the start-up have helped us to innovate and create new solutions for particular problems. For example, while Gorm Media is a ‘COVID baby’, the pandemic has hugely hindered how we connect with our audience (e.g. events and shooting content). Zoom has been a great support, but it can never replace in person interactions. Likewise, the lack of infrastructure in Limerick for those in the creative industry is quite bothersome, but this is an opportunity for us to incite positive change within the creative industry for Limerick. Personally, I am in the final year of my PhD and trying to balance academic work and start-up work can be quite over consuming. But after several panic-attacks and burnout from stress, I am learning to manage my time, say no, rest and preserve my physical, mental, spiritual & emotional health. 

What is your greatest achievement to date?

For Gorm Media our growing audience is our greatest achievement. We have created a community of people who engage with our content, join our conversations and are open to learning from diverse perspectives, which is where our impact lies. Again, our vision as a company is to spark a movement of unity and shared understanding. Other achievements include being an honouree for the 2021 Annual Gathering for Social Entrepreneurs Ireland and being selected as one of 30 organisations across the US, UK and EU to take part in the Landecker Fellowship, in which we partner with Humanity in Action and the Alfred Landecker Foundation.

What can we expect to see from you and Gorm Media in the future?

From me, my next major personal goal is to finish my PhD, publish academic work and engage in my creative work and activism. From Gorm Media we are preparing new video content for our Youtube Channel and getting new written pieces for our website and preparing more events, its going to be a jam packed year, so stay tuned. 

Where do you hope to see yourself in 5 years’ time?

In 5 years, I see myself with a finished PhD and as a successful media entrepreneur (still deciding on what success means). I see Gorm Media growing to a much larger audience where people in Irelan are  taking part in our content and building common ground through conversations that matter in issues important to them. I also see Gorm Media as a business scaling to reach newer, more international audiences. 

And lastly, what do you love most about Limerick?

My favourite thing about Limerick is the community. Limerick is the only place in Ireland where I have felt like I belonged. It is not as fast paced as Dublin, or as beautiful as Galway but the people are why I call Limerick home.

For more about Gorm Media go HERE 

                                 For more 10 Questions stories go HERE  Mamobo Ogoro

Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the ilovelimerick.com concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.

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