NCTJ Student Council – “Journalism should be fun”

By Andrew Watson, bursary recipient 2011-2012

I have been pulled to various parts of the UK for the sake of NCTJ training. Being an Aberdonian, who has adopted Bournemouth as my second home to study Magazine Journalism at Up To Speed Journalism Training, it was nice to get the chance to go ‘up north’ to Manchester and visit MediaCityUK to see what all the fuss was about.

On Friday 10th February I attended the NCTJ Student Council at the University of Salford in the heart of MediaCityUK. Although I was initially reluctant to attend the event, due to the pressing work required of me on the course at the time, the thought of attending and representing Glaswegians persuaded me

During the visit we were given the newsroom tour of MediaCityUK. This was interesting as I got to see how many overhead cameras and lights it will take to illuminate the Match of the Day studios.

The tour certainly enhanced my passion to become a journalist. The size and sheer scope of content offered by the ‘Beeb’ is inspiration enough for anyone, in any region of Blighty, to make an ambitious stab at a career in media.

However, the real value of the visit was found in the question and answer session with media heavyweights Chris Elliott, readers’ editor at the Guardian; Michelle Mayman, TV editor at BBC North West Tonight; Eamonn O’Neal, managing editor at MEN Media; and Lynn Ashwell, deputy editor of The Bolton News. The student reps were given the chance to talk to editors about what they look for in potential employees and how to make the first step on the ladder to a successful journalism career.

What they told us solidified why I want to be a journalist. In fact, another star guest, Peter Allen, BBC 5 Live presenter, couldn’t have summed up the world of journalism better: “The first thing I would say is its fun. It’s a lovely job, it really is. Journalism should be fun.”