Christopher Andrews (22) from Belfast has not only achieved distinction in his MA in Journalism, he has also landed a job as a trainee cross-platform journalist with UTV.
“This is a fantastic opportunity,” says Chris. “I know many people who have struggled to find work after graduation, or at least in the direction they always intended, so I have been very fortunate.
“To be doing what I love makes it even more special. It is just a start, however; the real work begins now to make sure I make the most of it.
“I’ve always been interested in political reporting and the economy, at local level and internationally. And by extension, how events in the wider world affect Northern Ireland.
“There is a great skill in telling complex stories in a manner the audience can engage with, and it comes from experience. It’s necessary to learn the trade, and as I am just starting out every type of report I am involved with will help. Watching, listening and learning from others is also important.
“Anyone considering a career in journalism should do the University of Ulster course for the qualifications and grounding it offers.
“No two stories are the same, and there is no substitute for experience and practice to do the job well, but for the skills of radio production and TV, shorthand and writing for newspapers, and the essential areas of media law and ethics, it's a very strong course; rightly regarded as one of the best in the UK.
“For work experience, I spent six weeks with BBC Northern Ireland, mostly in a research role with the Radio Ulster programme, Evening Extra. I also spent some time there with Good Morning Ulster and Newsline.
“I really made the most of the opportunities to be creative on the course.
“We all produced our own TV and radio news programmes and everyone contributed their own reports and ideas. We had a great spirit in the class and working together on those projects brought out the best in us all.”