Awards for Excellence shortlist announced after another record-breaking number of entries

The shortlist for the NCTJ Awards for Excellence 2017 has been announced with some 43 students, trainees and apprentices in contention for awards.

More than 300 entries were received from students and trainees hoping for recognition across the five main journalism categories: news; sports; top scoop/exclusive; features; multimedia story/campaign; and student project. These awards, which highlight the achievements of individuals with promising journalism careers ahead of them, are open to students on NCTJ-accredited and distance learning courses, and trainees who have completed the Diploma in Journalism and have less than two years’ experience in journalism.

There are three individual performance awards: student journalist of the year, chosen from 1,366 students who graduated from NCTJ accredited courses in 2016/17; trainee of the year, chosen from 116 reporters who sat the National Qualification in Journalism during the year; and apprentice of the year, chosen from more than 80 apprentices on media and communications apprenticeship training schemes.

There were 13 entries for the new innovation of the year award, which is open to centres running NCTJ accredited courses who are pioneering new approaches to educating and training journalists. Bournemouth University, UCFB Wembley and the University of Gloucestershire have been shortlisted for the inaugural award.

Special awards will be given to the colleges, universities and independent providers running the top performing accredited courses based on students’ gold standard performance in the Diploma in Journalism.

All shortlisted entrants are invited to attend the gala dinner and awards ceremony at Hampton Court Palace on Thursday, 23 November as guests of the NCTJ and headline sponsor Financial Times. The winners will be announced at the ceremony, hosted by Sky News presenter and NCTJ alumna, Sophy Ridge.

NCTJ chairman, Kim Fletcher, will announce the 2017 winner of his chairman’s award, which recognises a nominated individual’s outstanding contribution to high standards of journalism training and education. Previous recipients have been Paul Jones, Sue Green, Paul Durrant, David Kett, David Rowell, Amanda Ball, Walter Greenwood, Jon Smith and Cathy Duncan.

The full shortlist can be viewed here.

Thank you to all our 2017 awards judges:

  • Mark Allen, chairman, Mark Allen Group
  • Ian Carter, editorial director, The KM Group
  • John Cary, director of communications, Norfolk County Council
  • Jon Colman, football reporter, News & Star/The Cumberland News
  • Andrea Davidson, radio journalist, BBC Suffolk
  • Chris Elliott, former readers' editor, The Guardian, and NCTJ trustee
  • Sarah Freeman, features editor, Yorkshire Post
  • Colleen Harris, producer and reporter, BBC News at Six and Ten
  • Nicole Garnon, editor, South Wales Argus
  • Alan Geere, editorial consultant and journalism educator
  • Ben Green, head of digital, The Star, Sheffield
  • Mark Payton, editorial director, Haymarket Consumer Media
  • James Porter, head of journalism training, BBC Academy
  • Claire Pitcher, freelance editor
  • David Rowell, former head of editorial learning and development, Johnston Press and NCTJ trustee
  • Jo Wilson, journalist and presenter, Sky Sports News