Cardiff’s broadcast alumni talk to Tony O’Shaughnessy about their busy careers in journalism
Thursday, February 14, 2013
Cardiff’s realistic hands-on production days
It’s a common sight to see the Centre for Journalism’s alumni in the thick of the action during the second semester’s production days.
The experience of these professional journalists who have within the last few years put their training into practice, usually during their first day on the job, provides an invaluable insight for Cardiff’s current students.
The Centre for Journalism recently welcomed back broadcast alumni Dan Hewitt, Megan Boot, Peter Smith and Tom Brown who spent a day providing advice, tips and help on television, radio and online features during a practical news production day.
Peter Smith started working at STV in Edinburgh and is now working on current affairs programme Scotland Tonight at STV in Glasgow. Asked if he had always wanted to take on current affairs, Peter noted he had not expected to be able to do so from such an early stage in his career.
“I was always a fan of political and current affairs shows, when this [Scotland Tonight] opportunity came up I really went for it… I was trusted to take on quite big stories from an early stage… The Cardiff course is what makes you ready for industry, and it gives you confidence.”
Asked about why they chose Cardiff, political reporter at ITV Granada Dan Hewitt said “You arrive here, you learn to write, shoot edit…it’s a crash course in how to be a journalist. It’s a really good step-up to how the industry works… At Cardiff, they teach you to do everything the industry needs you to do.”
Tom Brown of BBC East Midlands added “The beauty of this course is that it’s unbelievably intense, but also an unbelievably rewarding practical experience.”
ITV Anglia’s Megan Boot noted the impact her training had made, “When you go into a newsroom with the skills you get here, very quickly you are noticed.”
Having been an MJ and sports reporter at ITV Central Birmingham before moving to ITV Granada Dan Hewitt said “I’ve got knowledge of two news patches, quite big news patches, doing sport and politics news… the more you can do the more flexible you can be with the jobs you can go for.”
Describing his experiences while training Dan concluded “This is nothing like university. It’s nothing like being a student. It’s like being at work… I wouldn’t be where I am now without Cardiff.”