National Careers Week is taking place between the 2nd and 7th March, and the NCTJ is proud to support the campaign. Throughtout the week, we will be sharing first-hand accounts from NCTJ graduates now working in a range of roles.
Ollie Lewis studied the MA news journalism course at Cardiff University and graduated last year. He now works as a journalist for the MailOnline Sport.
Tell us about your job, what does a typical day entail?
It varies, I work day shifts, night shifts and weekend shifts. During the day, I work on the sports news agenda so if there is a big game coming up or a press conference, then everything revolves around that.
On a weekend, there are a lot of games going on so I build match reports.
Last Sunday morning, I was working on a live blog for the Tyson Fury Deontay Wilder fight. As soon as it was over, you have to get a report live.
How did your NCTJ training prepare you for a job in journalism?
The NCTJ training is important for when you are working on a story from scratch, by going out and interviewing people, which is different to what I’m doing now.
It might take longer at the Mail, but when the time comes, I will be well placed.
Having the NCTJ diploma makes you employable too. I got offered three jobs in news when I left Cardiff and that’s down to the NCTJ.
What did you enjoy about the course?
I really enjoyed the creative side of things, and the hands-on stuff in production days, such as laying out pages.
Plus, things like picking up the phone. This really helped me grow in confidence as I was just used to emailing someone.
What advice would you give for prospective students?
If you are really passionate about being a journalist, get out there and do it. Try and get as much experience as you can, by writing blogs and for your student newspaper.
Put yourself out there and give it a go, it’s not going to come to you. I would love to do my NCTJ course all over again.