Diversity Fund success for more budding journalists

Shabana Adam, Toby Bakare, Lynsey Clarke, Olivia Heath, Madeleine Morgan, Jamie Nield-Siddall and Lucy Roue will study NCTJ-accredited courses at Press Association, University of Central Lancashire, News Associates, Liverpool Community College and Brunel University. Bursaries from the fund help contribute towards course and examination fees, living expenses and travel.

The budding journalists attended interviews at the Guardian on 10 June and were selected from 15 candidates.

Haroon Siddique, news reporter at the Guardian, sat on one of three panels and said that the recipients would bring diversity into the newsroom.

“All of those we awarded bursaries to showed a dedication to journalism as evidenced by the work experience they had already undertaken and their impressive portfolios. They also demonstrated that they would add diversity to a newsroom, not just because of who or what they are but also because they were able to think of ideas and approach stories from a different perspective.

Haroon added: “Without the Journalism Diversity Fund it is likely these candidates would have struggled to pay for the cost of a journalism course or even had to abandon their dreams completely.”

The interview panels also comprised of industry experts including: Dotun Adebayo, BBC Radio 5 presenter; Paul Durrant, freelance journalist and trainer; Marcus Ryder, current affairs editor, BBC Scotland; and Marverine Cole, freelance TV journalist and broadcaster.

Applications for the next round of bursaries are now being accepted and the deadline is 1 July 2011.

Since its launch in 2005 the Journalism Diversity Fund has helped 98 people complete their journalism training.

Editors and senior journalists are needed to shortlist applications and help interview bursary applicants. If you would like to help young people from diverse backgrounds start a career in journalism, please contact Melissa Allison-Forbes on journalismdiversityfund@nctj.com

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