Just another Mancunian Monday… in MediaCity!

Approaching week four of her Postgraduate Diploma in Broadcast Journalism at the University of Salford, it’s safe to say fund recipient Amber Haque has a taste for the challenges and excitement ahead:

edited Amber HaqueEvery morning when I get off the tram and look around at the BBC buildings and see the ITV slogan towering over the skyline, I realise just how privileged I am to be a budding journalist in such a hub of news, radio and television. It’s definitely an image to brighten up even the greyest of Mancunian Monday mornings!

Broadcasting is the aspect of my course that really excites me the most. On our induction day, eyes lit up as we were guided into the studio gallery and saw all the equipment available.

To have such an amazing asset as the Quays TV channel at our disposal is an invaluable platform to get hands on experience with presenting, shooting and editing our own materials. The channel broadcasts live shows on a Tuesday and Thursday and plays host to a whole array of different content. I wasted no time in getting involved, making my first package (albeit a very nervous one) on our first weekend on the course.

We have certainly hit the ground running since the course began and it’s encouraging to see our great and experienced team of tutors wanting to prepare us for the demands and disciplines required once you enter the working world. It’s become evident that our journey on the course is quite like the reality of a journalism career – you only get out of it what you are willing to put in.

I came away from our Journalism Diversity Fund celebratory lunch at the BBC in London feeling motivated and charged up to begin my journey. The momentum has certainly not faded away. Meeting previous recipients of the bursary and hearing about their experiences since being in my position just a year before really proved what can be accomplished over the next few months.

Having tried to brush up over the summer on my shorthand and slightly terrifying myself, our tutor Yvonne has already made a world of a difference in easing our anxiety! There’s no simple way to learn shorthand and this is a fact we’ve quickly learned from our daily sessions. It’s become apparent that like perfecting any art form, practice is the only way to drill it into the brain!

Our media law module is bringing to light the crucial rules and regulations that govern our modern day newsrooms. Understanding the complexities of journalistic freedoms within the law is already opening my eyes and shaping my mind set around the powers of the media and how this can be revolutionary and ground-breaking, as well as problematic at times for society.

I’ve been very fortunate to land myself a weekly placement with Nine Lives media in Manchester where I will get the opportunity to research and help out on the production of shows like Panorama and Dispatches.

It’s my dream to pursue a career in current affairs and investigative journalism so I hope my other three week placement in January at BBC Radio 4’s File on Four and Five Live Investigates will prove invaluable to my experiences with story development and seeing first-hand how tenacious research can produce stories to influence and shape society.

Despite only being a few months into my NCTJ course in Salford, I am already so grateful to have been a recipient of the Journalism Diversity Fund. From that incomparable excitement when you stumble upon an amazing story idea, to the satisfaction of seeing a package you’ve bled yourself dry to shoot, edit and produce go live on air, I couldn’t imagine not being able to rise to these challenges had I not have received the support from the Journalism Diversity Fund.