After a really successful year, the Young Reporter students have now written their final articles for 2020/21. Budding young writers, wanting to join the scheme, will have to wait until the start of the Autumn term in September 2021, to join up for the start of next year.
This year has been the most successful in the thirteen years since the scheme began. It was thought at the beginning of the year in September 2020, that the scheme might flounder because of the pandemic, but it turned out to more popular than ever, with hundreds of students eager to get involved and see their articles on one of Newsquest Media’s online newspapers.
Josh Bartholomew, who was one of our top reporter winners last year, said: “As well as helping me to improve my writing skills, participating in the Young Reporter scheme was crucial in developing discipline, diligence, and determination, all of which have proven extremely useful in studying for my A Levels.
“Beyond the evident benefits to anyone’s journalistic ability, the scheme provides you with skills that are priceless in whichever career path you may choose.”
Nicholas James who was our other top winner from last year, has just completed it for the second year running.
He said: “Doing the Young Reporter Scheme this year during a lockdown has certainly been a challenge. It has forced us to change the way we have found articles and who to talk to in order to get quotes. However, this new challenge has made the Young Reporter Scheme even more enjoyable.
“Whilst lockdown has forced everyone to stay at home, the Young Reporter Scheme has given us a unique opportunity to document and explore how life has changed in these strange times and find out about some really interesting people and businesses!”
This scheme does push students out of their comfort zones, making them interact with people from all walks of life. It is open to ages 14 to 18 and is a great opportunity to improve writing skills and build confidence. Students are able to showcase their articles to large online audiences and it is a great platform for them to write about things that are important to them.
Louise Newberry who has been one of our Young Reporters for this year, said: "Despite the challenges of the pandemic, the Young Reporter Scheme was the most insightful programme I have partaken in.
“I set in stone my passion for journalism and loved the opportunity. It also brought me closer to my local community."
Louise’s comments were echoed by many students.
Aishah Yusoof said: “It’s been a blast! I’ve developed my interviewing and research skills as well as learning to stick to strict deadlines, which will help me a great deal in the future. If you’re thinking about joining the scheme you definitely should; it’s such a unique opportunity that I wouldn’t trade for the world.”
And Saambavii Suthakaran summed it up by saying: "There is truly nothing like this scheme and I will take what I have learned with me wherever I go.”