Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Work experience: find the right person

People get very different results when they try to get work experience.

It’s fascinating: some get a week at a top magazine or newspaper at the first attempt. A girl on our travel journalism course achieved that last week.

Others spend months making applications and get nowhere.

It’s important to apply to the right person, especially if you’re on our music journalism course, for example. Magazines in the music, fashion and travel sectors get inundated with requests. And it’s not always the editor who deals with them.

Never write to a generic email address that no-one pays attention to.

Contact details are sometimes harder to find on websites. Large media organisation deliberately conceal them. So buy a copy of the newspaper / magazine, and look for the main contact details.

Many journalists add their email addresses or Twitter usernames in the byline of stories too, so you can track them down that way.

It’s best to start locally, as your local knowledge and contacts will help.

But getting contacts details at radio and TV stations is harder.

Call up the local BBC and commercial radio stations and ask for the name of the editor. Or listen to the bulletin to catch the name of the newsreader and then email them.

Even if you don’t know their email address, you can usually have a stab at firstname.lastname@nameofradiostation

Also, watch the evening news programmes on ITV at 6pm and BBC at 6.30pm to see which local TV region you’re in.

Most local TV programmes now include an email address at the end of the programme. Searching Twitter and Facebook for their social media pages is a good idea too.

See our NCTJ course

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