An up-and-coming news reporter helped by the Journalism Diversity Fund has beaten off competition from almost 650 applicants to secure one of eight traineeships at ITV News.
Tamsin Eames, 22, from Stockport, will join the award-winning regional trainee scheme on 2 March at ITV’s regional newsroom in Cardiff.
Speaking about how it felt when she was told the good news, Tamsin said: “I was in such a euphoric state. I just kept thinking about going to work for ITV, being part of the team and getting an ITV email address. When I put the phone down I was thinking not only have I got the job, but it’s my first step on the career ladder. It’s a real milestone moment in my life.”
ITV’s Cardiff newsroom is headed up by Phil Henfrey, head of news and programmes at ITV Wales, who was a member of the Question Time panel at the NCTJ’s Journalism Skills Conference in December.
Phil said what a huge achievement it was to secure a place on the ITV News traineeship and praised Tamsin’s passion for journalism, which he said came across strongly throughout the selection process. “She is bubbling with new ideas and fresh perspectives and I am looking forward to her being a part of the news team at ITV Wales,” he said.
Tamsin was awarded a bursary by the Journalism Diversity Fund last August and said things would have been so different if she hadn’t been chosen by the interview panel of media professionals. “When I came for my interview I had a job lined up in PR. If I hadn’t received the phone call to say I’d been awarded a bursary I would have had to decline my place at News Associates and work for at least a year to try and save up.
“Fortunately, everyone at the Journalism Diversity Fund had faith in me, and after completing my course and getting the position at ITV everything has fitted together like a jigsaw. So I just want to say thank you to everyone.”
Two other NCTJ candidates were also chosen for the trainee scheme by ITV bosses. Hannah Costigan, 26, from Shrewsbury, studied the NCTJ-accredited postgraduate diploma at Cardiff University in 2007 and passed her National Certificate Examination in March 2009. She spent three-and-a-half years at the Shropshire Star and its sister title the South Shropshire Journal before being chosen for the ITV traineeship, and will be based at the ITV Meridian office. Another News Associates graduate, Natasha Carter, 21, from Manchester, was selected for the Birmingham office.
Both Tamsin and Natasha completed their NCTJ-accredited course at News Associates, Manchester in January. They were invited for an interview at ITV’s London Television Centre on 12 January, along with more than 60 other hopefuls across three days, all vying for one of eight posts. Although there is no guarantee of employment at the end of the scheme, most trainees – including five of last year’s eight – go on to secure permanent employment at ITV.
Richard Parsons, course director at News Associates, congratulated his former students on their success: “Both Natasha and Tamsin were talented trainees who, from the start, looked comfortable in almost any situation we threw at them. They are both well suited to the broadcast world and I am sure they will do well there.
“We wish them the best of luck and will look forward to hearing about their achievements further down the line.”