RMIT alumnus Bridget Davies has been named Student Journalist of the Year at the 2016 Melbourne Press Club Quill Awards.
Having graduated last year from the Graduate Diploma in Journalism, Davies won the award for her feature article Angels of the force, a piece highlighting the many traumas policewomen face day-to-day.
The article was written for an assignment in her final semester but Davies’ Journalism lecturer recognised its potential and encouraged her to pitch it to newspapers for publication.
“I was preparing for my end of year exams and received a phone call from an editor saying they wanted to publish my story. Two days later it appeared in The Age,” Davies said.
It was while undertaking a coveted News Corp cadetship in early 2016 that she received her nomination for Student Journalist of the Year in the Quill Awards.
“It was a massive surprise and I really wasn’t expecting to win – the other nominees' work was at such a high standard,” she said.
Initially Davies had intended to pursue a career in classical music but decided to give her vocal chords a rest in order to follow her passion for writing.
She enrolled in the Graduate Diploma in Journalism because she felt the course offered the best training in all aspects of journalism in a short period of time.
“It was an intense 12 months but I’m incredibly grateful for the guidance and support I received from my teachers," she said.
"I still use the networks I made during my time at RMIT in my work life today.”
Intent on gaining as much experience as she could during her studies, Davies also undertook one of the most popular and highly competitive internships at Channel 7.
“I got to experience a real newsroom atmosphere, work across town, cover news and sports, and work alongside some great mentors who taught me a lot about the profession,” Davies said.
“It was an invaluable experience that gave me the confidence to apply for my cadetship at the Herald Sun.”
Fellow Graduate Diploma in Journalism alumnus Nicholas Payne won the award for Best Suburban Report in Writing for his article published in the Bayside Leader.
The Quill Awards were established by Melbourne Press Club in 1995 and recognise excellence in Victorian journalism.
Story: Jordan Di Stefano