Published on 2 June 2014
They spent last semester learning about the news, but now three University of the Sunshine Coast journalism graduates produce it each weekday for WIN Television.
Jordan Koster, Phoebe Spinks and Hayley Wright are among the USC Journalism program’s most recent graduates who have flooded into Queensland newsrooms.
Ms Koster and Ms Spinks can be seen each night on WIN News in their roles as on-camera journalists, while Ms Wright is involved in the nightly bulletins as a news assistant.
Ms Koster said she was enjoying her position at WIN, where she started working during her final semester.
“You get to meet so many people every day and do a variety of roles,” she said. “One week it can be production producing, then news producing, or being on camera doing the reporting.
“If I didn’t go to USC this would never have happened, and I’m thankful to Lecturer Jane Fynes-Clinton for putting in a plug at WIN to get me a start.”
Ms Spinks said she was benefiting from the opportunities and teaching offered at USC, as well as spending her spare time during her degree in various newsrooms gaining work experience.
“I wake up every day looking forward to the mystery of the unknown and unfolding events,” she said. “Every day is a surprise. I love that, because I have the tendency to get bored easily. I know I'm in the right career, because being bored in the wild world of news is impossible.”
Ms Wright said it was exciting being part of the nightly news and learning from behind the scenes.
“My role is a really good foot in the door,” she said. “It can lead towards something great for the rest of my career.”
But it’s not just WIN News where USC’s students are first with the news. Recent graduates and current students are working full-time at The Courier-Mail, Seven News, Sunshine Coast Daily, Central Queensland News, Noosa Today and South Burnett Times.
USC Journalism Senior Lecturer Dr Renee Barnes said the rate of success for USC journalism students was incredible.
“The past couple of years have been difficult for media organisations but our journalists have been highly successful at filling positions,” she said.
“At graduation in April, 90 per cent of our students had full-time roles and most of the others were applying their skills in part-time roles. It highlights the success of the Journalism program, including our industry placements, as well as the desire and application of our students.”