Christine Liu (2000 Leaver) – Freelance Broadcast Journalist, Sky News, London
It was actually a careers questionnaire that I filled out at MTGS which helped me realise I wanted to get into journalism. After a disappointing work placement at a PR company, I arranged my own work experience at the BBC. They advised against a journalism degree and told me to study something I enjoyed and would do well in.
So I took up physics at Imperial College, London and maintained my interest in journalism at the student newspaper, TV station and hospital radio. After that, I did a year-long postgraduate diploma in Broadcast Journalism at City University. I was lucky enough to win sponsorship from the BBC, which paid tuition fees and included more work placements, which really helped my fledgling CV.
My first job was at Russia Today, an English-language news channel based in Moscow, which started up just as I graduated. I lived & worked in Russia for two years before being persuaded by colleagues who’d left Russia to move to Al Jazeera in Qatar – that led to two years in the Middle East.
When I finally got homesick, finding a staff job in London was tough. But through more ex-Russia Today colleagues, I secured freelance work at Sky News and have been there for almost 5 years. I also do freelance work for Al Jazeera in their London Broadcast Centre, and have worked for ITV London and Bloomberg business news.
My advice for getting in to journalism: get as much experience as you can, be it paid or voluntary.