On Monday, 25 October 2010 at 05:57
About meI'm Victoria, a 21-year-old journalist who aims to write engaging, vibrant and creative copy. I have just finished a three year course studying journalism at Staffordshire University.
I’ve always enjoyed writing, whether it was stories about foxes in Farthing Wood, or even writing about a crazy spur of the moment decision to be a dog groomer for a day.
Animals are a huge passion of mine and they are one part of life I don’t think I could live without. This passion was so apparent when I was a teenager that I had always wanted to be a vet nurse, however, after being taken out of school at 15 and home schooled throughout my GCSE’s I was unable to pursue the career I would’ve loved, so I put my heart and soul into the next best thing.
In my spare time I can be found horse riding, showing dogs and designing and developing ideas for potential articles and pages.
My first freelancing job was with a specialist dog showing newspaper called Our Dogs. My reports consisted of show reviews until I started writing my own column called 'Just Juniors'. The column focused on news, results and information on junior handling, stakes classes and all aspects revolving around the Young Kennel Club (YKC). From this, I was given a weeks work experience at The Kennel Club press office in Mayfair, London.
Alongside my self confessed animal addiction, I also love spending time playing video games and writing about them, specifically Xbox 360 games.
In 2009, I was lucky enough to win a competition to travel to Germany with Microsoft and was one of the first community members to test out Kinect (known then as Natal). This gave me the opportunity to work with industry journalists and shadow them in press conferences and press briefings. It was one of the most memorable hands-on experiences I’ve ever had.
Throughout my university degree, I developed a passion for magazine design and feature writing and for my dissertation produced a 30-page magazine entitled ‘Staffordshire Dog Life’ as well as designing a double page spread for county magazine, Staffordshire Life.
Whilst at Staffordshire Wildlife Trust, I assisted the Communications Officer with various press releases relating from Wildplay and coffee mornings to wassailing and the Churnet Valley Living Landscape Project. The role required me to help sub/design the Trust magazine, send press releases to local media, attend events for the Trust and contact various Trust staff for quotes.
I currently freelance for Dog World, writing show reports and assisting with their broadcasting subsidiary, Dogworld.TV. Each month, Dog World airs their television show 'Around the Dog World' on Sky channel Horse & Country, a show which I have helped provide opinion pieces on as well as expert knowledge on the dogs competing in the show ring, to camera.
For every article I write, I put my heart and soul into and really get stuck in with every aspect of it – even if it does include spending a day smelling of a dog parlour and learning about chrysanthemum haircuts.
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She has a strong portfolio of work, excellent technical/online skills, and works well in a team environment.
- Pete Leydon, Award Leader MA Journalism and
BA (hons) Journalism, Staffordshire University (Staffs Live).
“Victoria is a student who is versatile in producing content for a variety of different outputs.
She has shown dogged determination to unearth and piece together breaking content in a live news
enviornment and showcases a real flair for the design side of journalism. As well as being a strong worker under her own steam,
Victoria is also able to play a productive role in a team. She is able to take instruction and offer constructive and informed
opinion to help shape ideas and move stories forward. I have no doubt that Victoria would be a strong member of any newsroom,
be it in design or content creation. Her skills would allow her to adapt to niche or mainstream publishing.”
- Ross Hawkes, Senior Lecturer in Journalism,
Staffordshire University (Staffs Live and Lichfield Blog).
Victoria has been working with me as a volunteer communications assistant for the last few months, and has proved herself
to be a valuable and popular member of the team. She has worked on a variety of different projects, from writing press releases
to producing a double page feature for Staffordshire Life, and has taken on each challenge with enthusiasm and conscientiousness. She has excellent communication skills and quickly builds up a rapport with people, has good writing
skills and a diligent approach to her work.
- Liz Peck, Communications Officer,
Staffordshire Wildlife Trust
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Industry Related Experience
Dog World Newspaper
Dog World Newspaper
Staffordshire Wildlife Trust Communications Office