The final day of the course
And so, as I sit here on my train to PA for one final time, I feel overwhelmingly reflective. What a whirlwind these nine weeks have been. I know it's a cliché, but it's true - time has quite literally sprinted by, and somehow we've all managed to hold on for long enough to survive and come out the other end marginally competent and, let's be honest, exhausted beyond any sort of recovery. PA has gained 12 multimedia magazine journalists and the world is a better place for it.
Fair to say we smashed it guys.
This has in no way been a walk in the park, however.
Through the hysteria of fatigue and dwindling self-confidence it has been tough, it has been almost impossible.
Don't be fooled into thinking this course is the easy route to becoming the next Caitlin Moran. You will doubt yourself so many times that you will lose track of why you applied to the course in the first place. Then you will find that reason (and various others) appearing when you least expect it. This course will constantly surprise you in your abilities and your resilience to the changing face of journalism, and the skills that this requires of you.
So, sat here on the 08:14 to Charing Cross on Friday 10 March, I bid farewell to 11 other swimming ducks; we have swum gracefully to the finish line, whilst underneath, we have all been paddling for our lives, and for good reason.
We made it to the other side.
Isabel Bleach - @BleachIsabel
"I'm six months into my first journalism job and I struggle to think of anything the Newcastle PA course failed to prepare me for.
"Everything we learnt was made to fit effortlessly in to 17 weeks. It was impressively comprehensive - leaving me confident in doing everything from court reporting to play reviews - but not remotely rushed."
Jack Hardy // News Reporter, Press Association