Portsmouth plays host to major journalism conference

The BBC's deputy political editor John Pienaar, who studied at Highbury College
The BBC's deputy political editor John Pienaar, who studied at Highbury College
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A MAJOR journalism conference is to be held in the city this week.

The 2016 National Council for The Training of Journalists’ Journalism Skills Conference will be hosted in Portsmouth tomorrow and Friday.

BBC political reporter Alex Forsyth

BBC political reporter Alex Forsyth

The two-day event will be co-hosted by Highbury College and the University of Portsmouth, two of the NCTJ’s leading accredited course providers.

It will cover the latest developments in training and working practices, bringing together movers and shakers from across all sectors of the industry.

Among the highlights will be a discussion about ethics in the media, digital reporting from inside court, and digital data and mobile journalism masterclasses.

Part of the conference is The NCTJ Awards for Excellence ceremony and a gala dinner at the Royal Navy Submarine Museum in Gosport, to celebrate the achievements of those involved in journalism education and training.

Joanne Butcher, NCTJ chief executive, said: ‘The conference is a fantastic opportunity to explore new technologies and discuss the ever-evolving skillsets journalists need to succeed in the industry.’

Highbury College in Cosham has been training journalists for more than 50 years, with ITN newsreader Mark Austin, BBC’s deputy political editor John Pienaar and BBC political reporter Alex Forsyth, who also worked for The News, among its former students.

Paul Foster, head of journalism at Highbury College, said: ‘There’s hardly a newsroom around the country that doesn’t have a Highbury-trained journalist in its ranks. So we’re delighted to jointly host the NCTJ conference here in the city, which has been synonymous with journalism training for half a century.’

As well as a 20-week NCTJ fast-track course, Highbury College also runs a one-year NCTJ diploma in journalism in partnership with The News, Portsmouth. Students are based at The News for three days a week and two days at Highbury.

Highbury is accepting applications for next year’s course from September 2017.

To apply, go to highbury.ac.uk/journalism