It's a very hands-on course, so you're never bored!

Portrait of Michelle Almeida
Michelle Almeida
Undergraduate student
Journalism Studies BA
Michelle is in her final year of her BA Journalism course. Her advice is to just enjoy it, and to make the most of unexpected opportunities.

Why did you choose to study your course and what inspired you to go into journalism?

Since Primary School, I've always enjoyed public speaking. In addition, I had a knack for reading and creative writing, and as I moved to high school, I realised I love research work and being in the know about anything that happens around the world.

After realising my interests, I knew I wanted to work in the field of media- where there's constantly something new to learn about and experience- so with some research and following my favourite TV journalist Clancy Burke (after Megyn Kelly), I was inspired to pursue Journalism and wanted to learn more about the different branches to figure out which pathway I enjoy the most- print or TV and radio.

Journalism at Sheffield University teaches you more than just print, radio and TV. It enriches you with transferrable skills that can be used in alternative routes into journalism. Reading about their exemplary teaching methods by lecturers who have been in the industry, dynamic course content, being an NCTJ/PPA accredited degree, and a Russell Group University convinced me that this was the right university, and I don't regret applying for it.

What is the best thing about your course and why?

The best thing about my course is that there is never a dull moment in this field. Whether reporting on a court case, writing an article for university publications, or interviewing someone on a trending news story, there is always something new to experience.

It's a very hands-on course, so you're never bored with just watching a lecture and taking down notes but instead, you're on the go, meeting new people, discovering new stories and working with some fun equipment. As a bonus, you're gaining work experience and building your portfolio during your degree, which greatly benefits job applications.

Your learning is not confined to the material in lecture halls. The Students Union has a range of societies and student-led publications that you can get involved in, such as the Journalism Society- where you can connect and network with other students, the university paper and magazine- Forge and Liberty Belle. These have been great ways to get work exposure and meet wonderful people.

Adding onto that, this degree is NCTJ and PPA accredited, so you know you'll be graduating with industry-standard qualifications coupled with a wide range of transferrable skills and exposure into what the field is like.

What is the best opportunity you've had on the course? (Or what's the best project you've had the opportunity to work on as part of your course?)

There are so many opportunities that I've been involved in that it can be really tricky to choose from. However, what stands out the most is getting my first national by-line on the Sheffield Telegraph, which could not have been possible if not for the Newsdays that is a part of the degree.

Since undertaking this course, I've had marketing and social media internships, worked as a blogger for several businesses, and have been a contributor for a range of publications in and outside the university, such as the Tab and Yorkshire By-Lines.

Presently I am the President of the Journalism Society, lifestyle editor at the university magazine (Liberty Belle) and the Student Employability Ambassador where I work with the Employability Officer on all things career-related for the students.

Portrait of Michelle Almeida

The Students Union has a range of societies and student-led publications to get involved in, such as the Journalism society, university paper and magazine - Forge and Liberty Belle. These have been great ways to network, get work exposure and meet wonderful people.

Michelle Almeida

BA Journalism Studies

What do you plan to do once you graduate? If you don't have any immediate plans, what are your long term goals for your future career?

I hope to get some work experience after graduating and a Masters degree sometime later, but I'm still deciding on the fields I want to pursue. This degree has equipped me with skills and experiences that have opened doors to various branches within and outside Journalism, so there is a lot to discover and learn about. No matter what field I choose (print/ broadcast or even social media), I plan to continue meeting new people and share their stories.

How do you think your degree at Sheffield has/will prepare you for your future?

The degree has really given me a lot of exposure into what Journalism consists of. It's not an ordinary course where you sit in a big lecture hall, scribbling down notes. From the first year onwards, you're working on your portfolio through patchwork. By your third year, you'll realise the amount of radio/print/social media content you have produced.

And that's not all; there are a plethora of transferrable skills that I've acquired during the three years that makes it easier to plan alternative routes with a journalism degree. Being an international student has helped as you learn different perspectives share your opinions, and it also teaches you how to adapt to new environments. Moreover, as much as the degree is fun and engaging, it's not without its challenges and persevering through those prepares you for the 'real world' work life. Of course, none of it would be possible without the lecturers and department staff. They are always an email away from helping and guiding you on the right path.

What would you say to someone thinking about studying journalism at Sheffield?

It's a very engaging degree through which you work and learn simultaneously! And by the end of your three years, you're guaranteed a dynamic and exciting career, so don't shy away from the intensity of the course.

 It can be demanding, but it's not without its rewards. Moreover, if you choose to study Journalism at Sheffield, you will be studying for a degree that is recognised for being at the top of university league tables.

Go in with an open mind and enjoy this degree because the course is all about grabbing and making the most out of unexpected opportunities that will help you develop professionally and as an individual.

Sheffield journalism students receiving a prize at the Magazine Academy awards

Our outstanding reputation for journalism

The Department of Journalism Studies ranks in the top 5 of all three of the UK's independent university league tables.

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