Free Summer SchoolBecome a Journalist Summer School

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PA Training and Google News Initiative Lock Up

Do you want to be a journalist? In just four weeks you could gain a recognised journalism qualification while being trained at one of Europe’s leading media companies. 

What’s more, you can study for free – with no fees to pay. 

On the Become a Journalist Summer School from PA Training and the Google News Initiative, you will learn the essential skills of being a journalist — from the basics of news reporting, to video journalism, podcasting, digital journalism skills, media law and either feature writing or sport. You’ll finish the course with an NCTJ Certificate in Foundation Journalism.

What is it?

You’ll join us in our central London training centre to build your journalism skills through hands-on training – you won’t be sitting at a desk all day. You’ll be writing stories, making your own videos, recording your own podcasts, and putting digital skills into practice as you work towards a Certificate in Foundation Journalism.

The course is the gateway to becoming a fully-qualified journalist, and could help you bag a place on an NCTJ Diploma course to become a professional journalist, or win a journalism apprenticeship where you are paid as you train. It’s also worth 16 UCAS points.

Who runs it?

The course is run by PA Training and the Google News Initiative. PA Training is the sister company of PA Media -- the UK and Ireland’s national news agency who you may know better as the Press Association. We report on everything from the royals to football transfers; political dramas to the Bafta awards.

That means you’ll hear from experienced journalists and experts from Google, and you’ll learn how news organisations really work and the kind of jobs you might expect to do in them. You’ll also get to have lunch with working journalists and find out how they launched their careers – and their top tips for standing out and landing a job.

This qualification is awarded by the National Council for the Training of Journalists. The NCTJ is the gold-standard when it comes to journalism training, so employers and course-tutors will recognise that you’ve made significant first steps towards becoming a journalist. 

Who is it for?

If you’re curious about journalism and keen to find out more, the Become A Journalist Summer School could be for you. We’re really keen to hear from people interested in journalism who are from under-represented backgrounds. Many newsrooms do not represent the society they report on, and we want to help change that. If you are Black, Asian or ethnically diverse, are from a lower socio-economic group, or are disabled, then we’d particularly like to hear from you. 

You need to be over 18 as of 25th July 2022 to take part in this course.

When and where is it?

  • Monday to Friday, for four weeks beginning on 25th July 2022 until Friday 19th August 2022.
  • 61 Queen Street, London, EC4R 1AE - close to London Bridge and Cannon Street stations, and there is a Santander bike rack very close by. 
  • You need to be able to join us in person

How do I apply?

You just need to answer the following question and give us some essential info:

Whose story would you like to tell — and why? 

  • Journalism is all about sharing the stories and lives of other people. Whose story would you like to tell? In no more than 200 words, explain why you’d choose this person and their story. It could be someone famous who you admire or find inspirational, somebody you’re curious to hear more about, or someone you know and think other people should also get to know. From Lizzo to your gran, all choices are welcome so long as they are real, not fictional.
  • We are keen to hear from you in your own words, so try and convince us why this person and their story matters to you – and why you think other people will be interested too. 

Submit your answer, along with a few details about yourself here (DO NOT use the Apply button at the bottom of this page). 

We’ll be back in touch and may wish to have a video chat with you if you are in the running for a place.

Start your application here 

Apply for a course

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PA Training
NCTJ accredited course