Student representatives from NCTJ accredited journalism courses met this week to give feedback on the NCTJ training and examinations.
Just over 40 students from around the country attended the 4th annual NCTJ Student Council meeting, held this year in Salford University’s new MediaCityUK campus.
Tasked with relaying the opinions of their course mates, the students spent the first portion of the day in discussion with the staff of the NCTJ led by NCTJ Chief Executive, Joanne Butcher.
During the session students were also informed of progress made following on from the 2011 Council meeting. This included the move to have more information on the NCTJ website for students, increasing the direct communication to students studying for their qualifications. This is set to include a student newsletter – the first of which should be received by students in the coming weeks.
Due to concerns raised last year that students were being given too little opportunity to specialise in subjects, the NCTJ have also been looking at new options such as financial, business, health and international journalism as possible new specialisms to introduce in the future.
The word from the NCTJ staff was to watch this space, as much change and progress is in development and will be implemented soon.
Following the morning feedback session students then attended a ‘Meet the Editors panel’ chaired by Chris Elliott, Readers’ Editor, Guardian News and Media. Alongside Elliott was Lynn Ashweel, Deputy Editor Bolton News, Eamonn O’Neal, Managing Editor MEN Media and Michelle Mayman, TV Editor BBC North West Tonight.
Students were able to pose questions and seek advice from these industry professionals on a broad range of subjects, from how to write a stand-out CV, to what they saw as the future of the media industry.
To finish off the day, a tour of the new BBC MediaCityUK buildings was organised which visited the Match of the Day studio, the practice space used by the BBC philharmonic orchestra and brand new BBC newsrooms.
Five representatives from the February’s student council meeting will meet later this year in London to communicate the main concerns and suggestions raised at this week’s meetings to the NCTJ board.
The tabloid journalist who has worked on almost all of the nationals as well as local newspapers provided students with an insight into the worlds of both newspaper reporting and online blogging.
For the past year, Fleet Street Fox has given her online followers a reporters’ eye view on the top news stories of the day, with views averaging one hundred thousand hits a month.
Telling students of her experience, Fleet Street Fox said that blogging was a release, and an outlet for the opinions she is unable to reveal in her news reporting.
Students were also able to question the renowned blogger on all things from her book plans, her aspirations, her work experience and her opinions on phone hacking.
The lecture was part of the Professional Perspectives unit for third year BA Multi-media Journalism students in which industry speakers visit the university to speak about the issues facing modern journalists.
Next week’s guest speaker is magazine editor Steve Sutherland.
BA Multi-media Journalism graduate Drazen Jorgic was this week pictured at the heart of one of the biggest national news stories of the year so far.
Jorgic, now a trainee at Thomson Reuters was featured in a photo used by the Daily Mail, depicting a scrum of journalists surrounding football manager Harry Redknapp, moments after he was cleared of tax evasion charges.
Only a few weeks ago Jorgic was back at Bournemouth University as part of a career’s forum for final year BA Multi-media Journalism students, giving advice on how to land top opportunities – something which this picture shows he himself is succeeding in very well.
Freelance journalist and scriptwriter Mary Evans lectured BA Multi-media Journalism students this week on the life of a freelance.
Entitled ‘Always Say Yes’ – the life of the freelance, the lecture gave students an insight into the rewards and the pitfalls of freelance journalism.
As a TV critic for The Daily Mail, TV Times and Daily Telegraph as well as a scriptwriter for Casualty, playwright, lyricist and an individual who regularly appears on TV and radio to air her views on the latest offerings on television, Evans gave students advice on a vast array of industries.
Sharing how to be an entrepreneurial journalist Evans explained much about the need to “sell not tell”. “Writing is a gift” said Evans, “but journalism is a skill. You are a company and your writing is your product.”
Drawing on a Primark analogy Evans suggested that like cheap clothing, “writing is everywhere, it’s cheap to produce and it’s hard to find the good stuff” suggesting that students must write about what they know, demand a fair price, and if they are good and stick at it, success will come.
The guest lecture was part of a series of lectures this term in which industry speakers are visiting Bournemouth University to speak with final year BA Multi-media Journalism students on a variety of issues facing journalists.
The next speaker is renowned and anonymous blogger ‘Fleet Street Fox’ who will provide insight into the world of blogging.
Having written for almost all of the national newspapers in England over his long career as a news and features writer Lee-Potter gave an insight into the many ethical challenges he has faced.
He recited stories and experiences from awkward celebrity interviews, unconventional investigative research, articles he is now proud of and those which he’s glad he turned down.
Lee-Potter told the students, just months away from the end of their degree the importance of deciding what kind of journalist and what kind of person you want to be early on. “The pressure to get results and perhaps cross the line is so much greater when you’re first starting out – you don’t want to get fired, you want to prove yourself…but if you no longer care about people – you have no business being a journalist”
Following his lecture, students turned the tables on the renowned interviewer, quizzing him on the issues of phone hacking, press regulation, subterfuge and at what point the justification of ‘public interest’ ends.
Part of the professional perspectives unit designed to give final year students a true insight into the industry they are soon to join, this term will see a series of weekly guest speakers allowing debate and discussion with industry professional on the issues and challenges facing journalists today.
Next week’s guest lecture is: ‘Always say yes – the life of a freelance’ By Mary Evans, freelance journalist and scriptwriter.
Whilst there Karen met up with former BA Multi-media Journalism student, Sverre Holm-Nilsson, who is now an investigative reporter working on a programme for TV2 in Oslo.
“Sverre is a brilliant ambassador for the course in his home country and a number of his friends and colleagues have followed his example of studying journalism at The Media School. He is enjoying his job and using all the skills he learned on the course, which he graduated from in 2009″ Said Karen.
Karen attended a recruitment fair in Lillestrom, where temperatures dipped to minus 10 and also delivered a lecture on ‘Creativity and Radio Journalism’ to sixth form students at Elvebakken High School in Oslo, which specialises in media and arts subjects.
“I was aware that the students had not yet had a chance to make any radio pieces” says Karen “so I was keen to emphasise the importance of good writing, using examples from Alastair Cooke’s ‘Letter From America’ to a recent ‘From Our Own Correspondent’ report by Stephen Sackur on how one restaurant in Denmark is serving up pine trees as a delicacy!”
The students also participated in an interactive workshop on developing ideas for radio features and seemed to enjoy the session. After the lecture, some of the staff at Elvebakken said that they are keen to come to The Media School to experience our teaching methods and the University plans to host a visit in March.
As Founder and Convenor of the Greek Politics Specialist Group – a network of Greek political experts, he provided commentary on the Greek debt crisis talks.
Gerodimos suggested that despite difficulties so far in the talks, an agreement will soon be reached by the Greek coalition government in order to secure the second bailout.
Watch the full interview:
Top journalists, recruiters and alumni visited Bournemouth this week for a BA Multi-media journalism careers forum.
Belinda Goldsmith, Global Head of Editoral Learning at the company told students about the opportunities available at Thomson Reuters. She was joined by Drazen Jorgic, a BA Multi-media Journalism graduate who is now on the Financial Journalism Graduate Trainee Scheme. “Just because you graduate don’t stop taking work experience, don’t stop applying to trainee schemes” advised Drazen. “You have to keep working and keep going until you make it. I didn’t get accepted to the trainee scheme on my first application, so I worked, got more skills, went back a few years later and now I’m a Thomson Reuters trainee”.
Nick Myers, Training Consultant for ITV News also spoke to students alongside Carole Capon and Keith Walker from IPC Media.
Alumni who returned to Bournemouth to offer advice to the near-graduate students included Lissa Hawkins who graduated in 2011 and is now completing an internship at IPC, as well as David Ornstein, now a broadcast journalist at BBC sport and Mark Russell, now Chief Sub-editor of GQ magazine.
Laura Bradder advised students not to give up, but to work hard and to persevere until you get the job you really want. “Just be yourself and go for the jobs that you’re passionate about. If your heart’s not in a job then don’t go to the interview – take the chance, take some unpaid work and hold out for what you really want to do,” she said.mul
Following short talks from each of the industry guests students quizzed the experts for advice followed by refreshments and an opportunity to network.
The ‘Careers Forum’ event is part of the Professional Perspectives unit for final year BA Multi-media Journalism students. Throughout the term guest speakers from the industry will be visiting Bournemouth to speak with students about the top issues in journalism today. Next weeks speaker will be Adam Lee-Potter, freelance feature writer, columnist and practitioner in residence at Bournemouth University who will be discussing ‘Truth and the tabloids’.