Inspiring stuff .. down at BBC Radio 1’s Academy

Just been to watch our very own SMJ Joe Mason sit on a panel at BBC Radio 1’s Academy at one of their many Q&A sessions aimed at 16-19 year olds, to get them inspired to take the leap and pursue the career of their dreams

Joe sat on a panel alongside an impressive cast list of professionals: BBC’s Michael Buchanan, ITN’s Charlene White , SMJ mentor and Guardian journalist Benji Lanyado all hosted by the Deputy DG of the BBC Caroline Thomson.  

Joe really held his own up there and took part in a rich discussion and Q&A with members of the audience about what it takes to become a successful journalist,  – or at least on the way to becoming one, in Joe’s case –  how persistence, perseverance and passion (the three P’s) are the root of finding you way, and as Charlene White put it having a “thick skin”. Don’t be afraid of rejection, and “do not let anyone tell you you are not good enough!” Benji added, “Make sure you do your research – well!”. Good stories are at the heart of it and telling them well and succinctly was good advice from Michael Buchanan who has a litmus test he uses for good journalism .”If you can’t tell a story in 20 seconds then either you’re not telling it right, or it’s not worth telling” ..

Much more ground was covered, including being prepared to keep irregular hours and miss out on some social activities for the sake of the job, and Caroline T highlighted the importance of remembering to keep the balance right and how as a woman in journalism it can be tough sometimes, especially when having children as well as working become a priority..

Both Bianca and Claudia from the SMJ’s were in the house so watch the SMJ page for more posts about this . .BBC Radio 1’s Academy runs right through up until 22/6/12 in the run up to the BBC Hackney Radio 1 Weekend.

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