For our first interview we get to know former editor of the Mancunion and now sub-editor at the Daily Mail, Jennie Agg.
With Freshers’ Week just around the corner what were your best and worst moments?
My best Freshers’ Week moment was the girls in my halls surprising me with balloons and presents on my birthday – especially as I’d only known them two days. Worst was probably forgetting I was having my student card ID picture taken and turning up on campus hungover, with mad hair, wearing a grubby hoodie. I was stuck with that picture for 5 years in the end…
Since being the Mancunion editor you went on to work for the Daily Mail. Have you got any suggestions for those wanting to get into journalism?
Don’t ask, ‘Can I go home now?’ when you’re on work experience, and learn how to make a decent cup of tea. Be prepared to work really, really hard. Write as much as you possibly can. Set up a blog and post on it regularly with the sort of work you would do in your dream job; treat it as your showcase – avoid vague grumblings about how hard it is to get a journalism job. Have interests outside of journalism. Be it sport, theatre, fashion, make the most of university activities – after all you need something to write about. Enter writing competitions. Read Scoop by Evelyn Waugh and Flat Earth News by Nick Davies. Look for internships (sometimes even paid ones) on gorkanajobs.co.uk. Don’t slag off publications you disagree with on your Facebook/Twitter, it’s a small world and you never know who your next potential boss might be.
With the introduction of our travel section we thought we’d ask you about your holidays. What is, so far, your favourite trip?
My last holiday to Turkey was perfect. I stayed in a tiny villa in the mountains. Sitting on the terrace at sundown listening to the call to prayer with a book and a glass of wine was completely idyllic.
And finally any words for those thinking of getting involved in the Mancunion?
Do it! Do it today. It’s not scary, you don’t need to know everything (or even anything) about journalism or newspapers. It will be the best thing you do at university – it certainly was for me.