The first trainee on Trinity Mirror’s bursary scheme for ethnic minority journalists has been given a full-time job on the Birmingham Evening Mail.
Patrice John, from East London, successfully applied for the scheme’s first intake last summer.
The 25-year-old trained on the 16week Foundation Course in Newcastle before completing work experience at the South London Press and the Evening Mail. She is now on her final placement at the Daily Mirror.
After her month-long stint in Birmingham, Evening Mail editor Roger Borrell was so impressed, he offered her a job.
Introduced in 2003, the bursary offers a pathway into journalism for young people from black and Asian communities.
The launch of the scheme last year followed a study by the Journalism Forum that showed that only 2 per cent of journalists are from black and Asian backgrounds.
Regionals editorial director Neil Benson said: “Clearly we have a long way to go, but the bursary is representative of a general aim to ensure our newsrooms more closely reflect the ethnic mix of their local areas.
“For example, Trinity Mirror Southern is committed to recruiting at least two of its six trainees for the Foundation Course from ethnic minority backgrounds this year.”
John said: “Getting your first job as a reporter is possibly the most difficult part of your career and the more experience you can get, the better.
Any programme that offers you the chance to work at a weekly, regional daily and national daily newspaper is exceptional.”
Anyone interested in applying for the 2004 bursary scheme should contact Tony Johnston, Trinity Regionals head of editorial staff development, on 0191 201 6043.