NCTJ board member Ed Curran is to be awarded the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters (DLitt) from the University of Ulster in recognition of his services to journalism. Other well-know figures receiving awards this year include golf champion Rory McIlroy, Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, actor Sir Ian McKellen and Snow Patrol musician Gary Lightbody.
Ed has played a prominent role in the training of journalists as a Director and Trustee of the NCTJ since June 2008. He was instrumental in bringing the NCTJ’s 60th anniversary skills conference to Belfast last year after Belfast Metropolitan College and North West Regional College joined the award-winning journalism course at the University of Ulster in delivering the NCTJ Diploma in Journalism.
Ed was editor of the Belfast Telegraph from 1993 until 2005 when he became editor in chief, and had previously been launch editor of the sister paper, Sunday Life. He joined the paper in 1966 as a graduate trainee reporter and after spells as reporter, features writer and leader writer, was appointed deputy editor in 1974. He continues to contribute a regular column to the paper and in 2006 was awarded the OBE for services to journalism
Dr Colm Murphy, Head of School of Media, Film and Journalism at University of Ulster said: “Ed Curran is being recognised for his contribution to high standards in journalism at both a local and national level. His successful editorship of the Belfast Telegraph and Sunday Life through turbulent times in Northern Ireland’s history is being honoured in this award. On a national level his contribution to the Press Complaints Commission, Society of Editors and more recently the National Council for the Training of Journalists is being recognised.”
NCTJ chief executive Joanne Butcher said: “Ed deserves this recognition from the University of Ulster more than anyone I can think of. He is a wonderful ambassador for our industry and is a passionate advocate of high standards of journalism at so many levels and in many different ways.”