News Associates partners with News UK and NCTJ to help young people break into the media

News Associates will deliver the NCTJ Certificate in Foundation Journalism qualification to News UK interns using the government’s Kickstart Scheme.

We’ve teamed up with the NCTJ and News UK to run this highly-practical course designed to teach the foundation skills required to become a journalist.

The ten-week course, which covers using audio and video to tell a story, legal and ethical considerations for journalists, writing review and comment pieces and much more, will run from March 9 to May 13.

Trainees will be taught the level three qualification by News Associates – the UK’s number one NCTJ journalism school – and will receive expert industry advice from News UK journalists.

The tuition from News Associates is part of News UK’s rollout of placements for out-of-work young people using the government’s Kickstart Scheme.

News UK will offer up to 100 placements in 2021 in their bid to help young people break into the media.

A graphic showing thumbnails of the 14 News UK interns. The headshots are on a white background and there is a row of News UK logos along the bottom.

In their six months at News UK, the newcomers will experience a blend of working and studying. Each will be given a mentor from the business, career support from the Media Trust and a programme of study from the NCTJ and News Associates. 

The placements are designed to help young people break into the media, with experience and training across News UK’s editorial and broadcast brands. 

“You shouldn’t have to fight so hard to get a foot in the door in the media industry. Through this scheme, we’re blowing that door right off, and giving young people the tools, experience and confidence they need to land a job in journalism,” said News UK head of early talent Mark Hudson.

“Our six-month internships are going to be the difference between some amazing undiscovered talent breaking into the industry, or us missing out on their ideas and voices. 

“To have News Associates on board to deliver the Certificate of Foundation Journalism qualification is the perfect way to give these young people the equity they need to have the confidence and experience to land a job in journalism. There is no better place to start than with the UK’s number one NCTJ journalism school. 

“This partnership is going to go some way to tackling the lack of diversity we currently face in the media.”

Minister for Employment Mims Davies MP said: “It’s fantastic to see young people begin their Kickstart journey with News UK, working for some of the biggest names in the media industry and in a range of exciting roles with an NCTJ qualification at the end setting them on the road for their future careers.

“Our Plan for Jobs is focused on creating and spreading opportunity as we build back better and with News UK focusing their recruitment outside of London, it is supporting this government’s commitment to level up opportunity across the country.”

The first 14 interns will be working on a number of titles and stations. Job titles include digital content assistant at Virgin Radio, broadcast assistant at Times Radio, podcast assistant at talkSPORT, Sun digital journalist and fashion assistant at Fabulous Magazine.

Head of talkSPORT Lee Clayton said: “At talkSPORT we want to find and develop raw talent – rather than default to experience – to truly represent the diversity of our audiences.

“This scheme is a fantastic way for talkSPORT to build an even more inclusive future, and we are excited to see the valuable contributions these new recruits will make to our output.”

At the end of the course, interns will qualify with the Certificate in Foundation Journalism, a qualification provided by the NCTJ that is equivalent to an A-Level. News UK will support the interns to access permanent roles in the company and the wider industry. 

NCTJ chief executive Joanne Butcher said:“We are delighted to partner with News UK on this innovative scheme, which is helping to tackle inequality and break down the barriers of entering the industry.

“News Associates, which has run outstanding NCTJ-accredited courses for many years, is a brilliant choice of training provider.

“It is fantastic to see the first recruits start their paid placements today, and we wish them the best of luck as they work towards their Certificate in Foundation Journalism qualification.”

Career coaching will be provided by the Media Trust, while Barnardos will be on hand to provide interns with pastoral support. 

News Associates editorial development manager Lucy Dyer said: “We are so excited to be delivering the CFJ course to this first cohort of News UK trainees.

“We firmly believe practical NCTJ courses are the best grounding for a successful career in journalism.

“It’s great to be working alongside News UK and the NCTJ on this scheme.”

Each intern will be paid the National Minimum Wage. The scheme is subsidised with the Government paying 100% of the National Minimum Wage for a minimum 25-hour week for six months, plus National Insurance and pension contributions.

News UK will pay an additional two days per week, plus providing funding for travel and accommodation where needed. 

The Sun has been shortlisted for a Society of Editors driving diversity award.

Read about our work with the Daily Mail, the Sports Journalists’ Association, Yahoo, The Times and Journo Resources.