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Next generation of TV talent hit the newsrooms across the UK

The Creative Diversity Network held its second Open Newsroom Day on Wednesday 21st October 2015. Across the nation, 30 newsrooms opened their doors to over 500 young people interested in a careers in broadcast journalism. The event was organised by the CDN News Group: BBC, ITN, ITV, CNN, Channel 4, Channel 5 and Sky News. The excited attendees were exposed to the full range of skills in news production; from selecting the stories, writing the scripts, presenting to camera, filming, video editing and on-site reporting.

Shannon Wright, 22, just graduated from Brunel University with Film and Television said: “It’s been an amazing opportunity and a fantastic experience to see what goes on behind closed doors. June Sarpong told us to create our own content using stuff we know how to do already such as edit and film. It’s really encouraged me to follow my dream to be a broadcast journalist.”

Robin Elias, Managing Editor, ITV News at ITN said, “We engage with small groups of diverse jobseekers and aspiring journalists throughout the year but the Open Newsroom is particularly attractive as it allows us to reach a bigger group and creates a buzz not only for the young people but for our own staff as they get to help out and mentor. Our doors are literally open for the day and we find that people are surprised about how diverse our newsrooms are but also that many people have accessed the industry through non conventional routes.”

Charlene White, TV News Anchor for ITV News addressed the 90 young people gathered at ITN HQ in London, “Our industry needs people like you. If you work hard, believe in yourself, ask lots of questions, you can – whatever your background – be a success. I came from a very non traditional background. My father was a postal worker and my mum a social worker but with perseverance and belief in myself, I made it. You all have the added bonus of being multi-skilled with technology. You are all gold dust because you can film and edit.”

Sevi Kemal, 24, a third year journalism degree student at East London University, said “A fast paced, spontaneous, exciting day. I was offered the chance to go and watch Loose Women – not something I even knew I was going to do when I woke up this morning. It’s all about taking and making the opportunity”

Amanda Ariss, Executive Director , Creative Diversity Network said, “The Open Newsroom Day is a fantastic opportunity for young people from communities that are under-represented in newsrooms to experience, first hand, the reality of a working newsroom and to network with those working in the industry. The CDN News Industry Working Group have created a successful template which engages young people across the country, opens doors and encourages their ambitions for a career in the industry.”

Our social media campaign @tweetCDN #CDNOpenDay made a giant splash with over 4000 tweets. One hundred journalists from across the country supported the event by sharing their stories of how they got started in news and by tweeting photos of themselves starting out.

CNN will be holding their Open Newsroom Day on the 20th November and those interested in participating should email csreurope@turner.com