Staffordshire University is kicking off the World Cup on form – with a hat-trick of sports journalism students poised to play their part.
A graduate, two final year students and their award leader Mitch Pryce will be putting their skills to the test in South Africa for one of the worlds greatest sporting events.
MA Sports Broadcast Journalism graduate Seb Hutchinson, 25, is a producer for ITV Sport and is already in Johannesburg working on the World Cup.
He said: “The World Cup is absolutely something I have been looking forward to taking part in. It’s the holy grail of sporting events; only the Olympics is bigger.”
Seb, who graduated from Staffordshire University last year, has been with ITV since August 2007 and has worked on sporting events including Champions League Football.
He added: “During the tournament I will be producing the videos that you see when you watch the games on ITV.
“We are based in Johannesburg, in the International Broadcasting Centre, which is right next to the main stadium, where the finals and opening games will be played. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to see many games in person because I’ll be busy making the TV programmes!”
Third year BA(Hons) Sports Journalism student Daniel Houlker, 21, is on a work placement at Africa’s most popular football publication, Kick Off magazine. As well as writing for the magazine, he has been working on the official FIFA tournament programme during his time in Cape Town.
He said: “Through one or two friends I managed to secure a work placement at KickOff magazine. I’ve since put together 28 team profiles for the programme. When I started I was asked to write eight 100-word player profiles on the dangermen in groups G and H for the Kick Off website and then I was handed work on the official FIFA match programme.”
Set to graduate in July this year, Daniel has gained work experience at Sheffield Wednesday FC, News of the World, Rochdale FC, Yorkshire Evening Post and Bradford Telegraph and Argus.
He added: “All being well when I return from South Africa I’ll be graduating and hopefully getting a job in the industry.”
The trio of achievement is completed by Hanisa North - another third year BA(Hons) Sports Journalism student - who will be covering the World Cup for Amercian cable company ESPN (Entertainment Sports Programming Network) in Singapore. Hanisa starts work in August for the leading sport, entertainment and media company IMG as a TV production assistant.
Mitch Pryce, Sports Journalism award leader for Staffordshire University, is also flying out to Cape Town for what will be his fourth World Cup. He takes on the role of field producer for ITV, working with commentating team Jon Champion and Craig Burley, and he will be travelling around the country covering 11 of the first 16 matches.
He said: “Apart from the Olympics, it’s the biggest sporting event on the planet and I’m really excited that we’ve given our students and graduates the opportunity to work at that level.
"This is a tremendous tribute to all three students - and the hard work they have put in to gain recognition at the highest levels of professional sports journalism. I am delighted for the three of them - it's a hat-trick Geoff Hurst would have been proud of!”
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