Published by Press Gazette in association with the NCTJ, the 32-page guide includes tips from top journalists (including NCTJ alumnus and The Times chief investigative reporter Andrew Norfolk), advice on getting a job in the industry from employers and a full list of NCTJ-accredited courses.
It also provides an overview of the NCTJ journalism training routes, with an introduction to the various accredited course options, apprenticeships and the Journalism Diversity Fund.
Print copies of the training supplement have been sent to the careers libraries of every sixth form and university in the UK – nearly 4,000 in total. A digital version is also available on the Press Gazette website and the NCTJ website.
Writing in the guide, chairman of the NCTJ and former editorial director of The Telegraph Kim Fletcher encouraged those interested in a career in journalism to complete an NCTJ qualification to maximize their chances of employment.
He wrote: “Journalists with our qualifications are on local and national newspapers; they report regional and international news for the BBC, ITV and Sky and commercial radio stations; they staff big news agencies, magazines, websites. In short, they find jobs in all outlets. You don’t have to have a qualification to work as a journalist, but when you are looking for that first job, people take you seriously when you have.”
In his introduction to the guide, Dominic Ponsford, editor of Press Gazette, advised aspiring journalists to get an NCTJ qualification as it provides a grounding in the basic skills needed to work in local and national news. He wrote: “… if you have serous ambitions to be a professional journalist you will greatly improve your chances of doing so with the right vocational training. News writing is not a skill which we are born with, it is a craft which must be learnt and practiced. You wouldn’t expect to be able to lay a brick wall without a lot of training and practice, and writing a news story follows the same principle.”