Harlow College student attends NCTJ Student Council at BBC MediaCity in Salford

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A HARLOW College journalism student has attended the annual NCTJ Student Council which was held at the BBC’s offices at MediaCity in Salford.

Andrew Impey, who is studying for the NCTJ Diploma, made the journey north to represent the college at the event, which aims to give students the opportunity to provide feedback to the NCTJ and ask questions about the course.

The day began with a Q & A session where the students present were free to ask questions of NCTJ chief executive Joanne Butcher, principal examiner Amanda Ball, head of quality and assessment Rachel Manby, and accreditation manager Emma Robinson.

Following this the students were divided into groups and asked to discuss the pros and cons of studying an NCTJ accredited course, before one member from each group fed back to the entire council.

After lunch, the council heard from Tamara Siddiqui, senior reporter at The News in Portsmouth, about her experiences studying for the diploma and subsequent National Qualification in Journalism.

The Diploma in Journalism awards were then presented by former Sky Sports News presenter Charlie Webster. Before announcing the winners, Ms Webster addressed the council and explained why she became a journalist.

She said: “For me, journalism is about affecting people’s lives. That’s exactly what I want to do. It’s about that passion and purpose, find out what you are passionate about and keep your individualism.”

Finally, the students had the chance to put their questions to a panel made up of Chas Watkin, executive editor at BBC Radio 4; David Higgerson, chief audience officer at Reach plc; Gillian Parkinson, editor of the Lancashire Post and Blackpool Gazette; Nazia Parveen, North of England correspondent for Guardian News and Media; and Lucy West, head of News for Granada Reports, ITV News.

Mr Higgerson explained how the industry has changed since he started his career.

He said: “When I first worked on a daily we did things because we always did them that way, and didn’t think about the impact on the individual. Now, we do.

“We think more about the individuals and the subject of the stories.”

Andrew (far left) with his group at the NCTJ Student Council

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Andrew Impey

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