Apprentice journalists from the Express & Star have for the first time joined other diploma students at City of Wolverhampton College to celebrate passing their course with flying colours.
Four apprentices and eight others who have just completed the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) Diploma in Journalism through the college, were presented with their certificates by Keith Harrison (pictured, front centre), Editor of the Express & Star at a special awards event.
The graduates enjoyed a talk by former journalist at South London Press and comedian Ben Clover as part of the celebrations.
As well as those who work at the Express & Star and Shropshire Star, many of the students have already secured jobs in the industry, gaining employment at newspapers and media outlets that include SWNS News Agency, Caters News Agency, Hot Spot Media and Worcester News.
NCTJ course leader Dani Wozencroft (pictured, front, second left) said: “It has been another very exciting year with both the Express & Star and BBC apprentices and the full time Diploma students. The apprentices have had to put in a lot of effort to study alongside working in a demanding newsroom. I am very proud of everyone who has achieved and look forward to seeing their names in the press for years to come.”
Student of the Year Tom Tracey, who passed 100 words per minute shorthand at 100% accuracy at the first time of asking, was handed his award by Beverley Bailey, head of development at the NCTJ.
The college has been accredited by the NCTJ since 1997 and is the only accredited further education journalism training centre in the Midlands. It has been named the best performing NCTJ further education college in the UK for six consecutive years and is helping to train the BBC’s radio apprentices across the country as well as working with the Express & Star on its journalism apprenticeship scheme.
City of Wolverhampton College is the number one college in the Midlands - and in the top 10% nationally - for learner satisfaction, and was graded ‘Good’ by Ofsted in November 2014. It currently has around 10,000 students, as well as 1,300 apprentices working for employers across the Black Country and beyond.