04 March 2014

Rich's last blog!

So after nearly nine weeks of incredibly hard work, occasional stress and copious amounts of laughter, I've finally come to my final blog post. This week is the last week of the course, and there's a lot to be done before we finish in a few days. The next three days will be packed with exams which are always fun so it's heads down and revision central for all of us at the moment.

Despite this, the atmosphere does feel a little more chilled than the hectic workload of week's 5 and 6 (and the placement as well for me, I certainly wasn't short of work at PrintWeek). Perhaps it's because the days are getting longer and the temperature is very slightly getting warmer, but I do feel a lot more relaxed this week, despite the mountains of revision and a few outstanding resubs and other things that we've still got to do.

This course has been an unforgettable experience and one that I would wholeheartedly recommend to anybody looking to get into journalism. I've learnt more in the last nine weeks than I did about the subject in three years of doing a media studies degree. It's great to really learn the workings of the industries from professionals and find out that writing is an art form. There is a structure to writing news and features and it's been invaluable to learn. I will take away so much from the past nine weeks.

It helps that I've become great friends with everyone on the course. I hope we will all stay in touch and I'll miss not seeing everybody regularly. But on the other hand I'm looking forward to having my life back, it really is a completely all-consuming experience. I knew it would be from reading up about the course beforehand but even I underestimated just how intense it would be. I don't think I've spent more than half an hour at any point in the past two months where I haven't thought about the work that I've got to do for the course. I can't wait to have a day off, lounging around the house with the dog and reminding my friends that I exist! After a few days like that I'll crack straight back onto looking for a journalism job!

Two people on the course - Lauren and Hywel - have already got jobs, some have got guaranteed freelance work and others have gone for or are going for interviews. So the course clearly works. Sure some of it is luck and taking advantage of the opportunities that present themselves to you in certain situations, but most of it is the sheer hard work, determination and preparation that people on this course achieve. It really gives you the opportunity to sell yourself in an interview. Previously I'd never have been able to convince an editor to employ me, I just didn't have the skills, the knowledge or the experience. But now I feel quite confident in journalism interviews and hope that a new career won't be too far away.

I think I'll leave it there as I've got revision to do! But in a nutshell: lived it, loved it, recommend it. Good luck to anybody reading this blog that wants to do the course in future, you'll do really well out of it and be immensely proud of what you can achieve. And I'll leave you, naturally, with a nice song that sums up the mood.


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