Every day was different... a real treat
MY time at the Herald Express has been an eye-opening experience — and one I'm glad I didn't miss, writes Tia Collinson of Westlands School.
I have always been interested in journalism, photography and the media.
But before this week I didn't really know the ins and outs of the profession.
The office hours can be irregular and the pressure to chase up stories, no matter how big or small, can be extremely difficult and stressful.
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Despite this, the atmosphere in the newsroom is really good, and I instantly felt welcome and involved from day one.
At first, I thought I would be stuck in the office but the journalists all get out and talk to local people in the community to collect quotes and investigate stories.
I really enjoyed this part of my experience.
Writing and socialising I found fairly easy, but smaller things like answering the phone in the office really tested my confidence.
I am now really proud that I did 'pick up' — and I can't see what all the fuss was about.
During the week I went to places all over the Bay and met people from all different parts of the community, and of different ages.
I met a man who had criminal damage done to his £2million property, spoke to young children stopping cars speeding outside their primary school in Brixham and encountered police looking to make our streets safer by dealing with anti-social behaviour.
I don't like routine, but every day at the Herald was different. It was spontaneous and unplanned.
Work wasn't scheduled, and all the more enjoyable for that. I found myself looking forward to the day.
I particularly enjoyed my time out with the photographers, learning how the camera works, how to take the perfect shot and how a happy and friendly attitude can make a day so much more enjoyable.
One of the photographers, Torquil Macleod, really opened my eyes to the different paths I could follow and advised me on which directions I needed to take in order to do something I really enjoyed.
He gave me a huge confidence boost and has made my experience here very enjoyable along with Steve Pope, another Herald photographer, who made me laugh so much throughout the week. I am really thankful to them both.
This experience has taught me I couldn't work in a quiet office on my own as I once thought. Work isn't something to dread or worry about because most people are nice and welcoming.
A slight lack of confidence on my part should not get in the way of doing new things.
I have been given some good advice in my week at work here — and now understand that if I stay positive and want something enough I can achieve it.
My week at the Herald Express has given me a positive attitude and I am now even more determined to get good GCSE results and move on to A-level work.
And who knows what afterwards... maybe journalism and possibly photography.
I would definitely recommend this experience to anyone interested in reporting or photography. It's been a real treat.
It's shown me what it takes to be a journalist, and has given me other skills which I can take with me in the future.