Source: Ara Institute of Canterbury
Headline: Radio student’s Plan B propels her towards goal
Andrea Marshall had her hopes pinned on studying radio at the New Zealand Broadcasting School (NZBS). When she was unsuccessful at the end of 2016, Ara offered her a plan B.
Andrea Marshall is on her way to a great career in radio.
Plan B was the Certificate of Media Communications, which Andrea studied in 2017. The qualification gave her the foundational skills she needed to pathway into the NZBS.
“I really want to get a job in the radio industry and thought the course would be a good start to getting me into the degree,” she said.
Plan B has certainly paid off for her, helping her achieve her goals. “The certificate definitely prepared me for Broadcasting School because I gained the confidence to talk to people and I learned so much about radio including the Broadcasting Standards, writing scripts, presenting and producing!”
Andrea loved the teaching style of Ara and the opportunities she got to put theory into practice, including three weeks of work experience at The Hits radio station and interviews with the coach of the Crusaders, Scott Robertson, the captain, Sam Whitelock and some of her favourite players.
“Media Communications has been so good for me. I’ve gained so much confidence in talking to people and I’ve also learned so much about the media industry that I didn’t know before.
My tutors were absolutely amazing and pushed me to become the confident person I am today,” she said.
Ara NZBS tutors Dale McCord and Jeff Hampton received particular praise. “Dale has been the most dedicated tutor I have ever met and made sure that everyone who wanted to pass made it over the finish line. She has given the people in my class so many opportunities for jobs and interviews. We had so much one-on-one time, which was so good.”
“Jeff Hampton was also great in terms of teaching us about the industry, as he used to work for Newshub.”
Students on the programme did not miss a chance to cover a story, working closely with the student event team and Student Event Coordinator Rosaria Ferguson. “I loved how no matter which event we went to at Ara, she was always there to talk to us and help us out.”
“The main strengths of the Media Communications course is news journalism. No matter what platform of media we studied, whether it was TV, radio, print or online, it always came back to news journalism.”
Although Andrea was not focused on news journalism initially, she learnt a lot during the year, particularly “in terms of general knowledge and the media industry as a whole”.
Andrea’s next step on the path to a career in radio is the Bachelor of Broadcasting (Radio) at NZBS, which includes a work-based component to prepare graduates for the realities of the industry. “I plan to study the Radio Broadcasting degree for the next two years, get an internship in the third year and hopefully get a job as a presenter or producer at a popular radio station for example The Edge, ZM or The Hits.”
For any students who are not accepted for their first choice in the coming months, it is worth asking whether a Plan B is available – then going for it.