Tips and tricks to break into the media industry were given today by an alumni panel at Leeds Trinity University’s annual Journalism and Media Week.
The diverse panel have all launched successful careers in different sectors of the media industry since graduating from the university and were keen to share their experiences with budding journalists.
The former students agreed that a lot of hard work is what got them where they are today.
Joe Howlett, Boxing365 editor, recalls how he would travel from Leeds to London and back after lectures to cover press conferences – and said the plus side of the £7 Megabus was the free WIFI and portable chargers.
He added: “It was exhausting but you have to think of the ultimate goal and that’s getting paid to do what you love. I don’t believe in talent. There will be knock-backs and you may have to do free work, but if you want to make your dreams come true then through hard work you can make it happen. ”
Charlie Russell, Lincoln City Football Club’s media executive, agreed: “You’ve just got to work hard if you want something and to achieve what you want – you can’t just walk into a job.”
The panellists all took part in placements whilst studying, which they agreed helped them get a foot in the door.
Abbey Maclure, live reporter for the Yorkshire Evening Post, explained how she introduced herself to every speaker during her cohort’s Journalism Week event, which led to her securing work experience at the Yorkshire Evening Post.
She said: “It is good to come with ideas but also maybe set up some interviews – that will really make you stand out.”
Her work experience led her to a three-month paid placement, and she was offered a full-time role as a live reporter a week later.
Alice Young, breakfast newsreader and bulletin editor for Bauer Media also explained how she was doing shifts for Radio News Hub whilst she was in her degree.
She said: “You really have to push yourself to jump at any chance you can get to make sure you are chasing your dream; I am living my dream every day.”
Grace Pritchard who works as digital content producer for March for Change said: “Harvest connections and make sure you stay on top of those relationships. Make a good impression and you can make your own luck.”
And Alice Young added: “You’ve got to really power on caffeine and coffee to get you through.”