St Bride's: News - Double distinction for St Bride's scholars

St Bride's: News

Double distinction for St Bride's scholars

Double distinction for St Bride's scholars

Left: Anna Menin – Right: Abbie Cheeseman

Members of the historic Guild of St Bride were seeing double this academic year as two highly promising journalism students were given bursary funding. The guild, based at the journalists' church in Fleet Street, has been supporting one postgraduate student a year for the past seven years but this year chose to support two. 

Last summer, after interviewing five candidates, the Rector and Course leader Jonathan Hewett  recommended two students to the Guild Court for a joint award. The Guild then took the exceptional decision to grant two bursaries.

Awards are made after an interview panel where consideration is given to journalistic potential, academic merit, financial need and overall quality of each applications. Our St Bride's Scholars Abbie Cheeseman and Anna Menin, are now halfway through their studies.

The guild's scheme, which supports students at City, University of London, with funding, mentoring and networking, was set up by the guild to "give something back" to the profession, which has in turn supported the 'Cathedral of Fleet Street' for generations.

In 2011 master of the guild, Sir David Bell, asked court member Pat Barnes-Harman, who pioneered Stationers' Company's bursaries, and FT journalist Simon Greaves to set up and run the scheme, including a candidates' selection and interview panel. 

As well as the cash award, students have benefited through the church's connections with job references, work experience at news organisations and opportunities through the Guild to attend high profile public events. Award winners have also been invited to write for the church's website, covering public lectures by leading politicians and key services in the church calendar.   

Among those receiving annual awards of £3,000 towards fees, several students have gone on to secure merits and distinctions on their course and all have then moved into first jobs which include top employers in the industry.  

Last year's award winner Joe Bray started work in August 2018 near his home town Oldham as a trainee digital football writer with the Manchester Evening News. The Sheffield university graduate said: "The role particularly focuses on trends, analytics, and social media - and it's writing about football in Manchester so it's almost an ideal role for me!"

At the end of his course, he said: "Once again I'd like to thank the guild for their help and guidance over the past year. Having nearly come to the end of my time in London I am certain I would not have had the opportunities I have had without the bursary."

"We are most grateful to the Guild for supporting journalism students," said Jonathan Hewett, director of Interactive and Newspaper Journalism at City, University of London. "It's a generous way to mark St Bride's long and continuing association with journalism  - and fantastic that the Guild is able to help two promising students in the year ahead."    

The Rector of St Bride's, the Rev Canon Dr Alison Joyce, said: "The guild bursary was established in 2012 as a way in which St Bride's can offer practical help to a talented aspiring journalist each year. Alongside the financial award itself, the link with St Bride's has provided opportunities for the bursary winner to attend events which, so far, have ranged from a Buckingham Palace Garden Party to the annual Press Club Ball. At a time when so many in the industry are feeling under pressure, St Bride's does all that it can to provide support of every kind to those working in the journalism profession."

Where are they now? list of guild scholars

Tom Knowles 2012 economics and property correspondent for The Times 

Rozina Sabur 2013 Washington correspondent for the Telegraph
Bryony Clarke, 2014 subeditor on staff at the Guardian 
May Bulman 2015 social affairs editor at the Independent
James Sutton, 2016 subeditor and journalist at Citywire
Joe Bray 2017 digital football writer at Manchester Evening News

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