An annual competition which aims to discover the next generation of journalists and vloggers has launched at Staffordshire University.

The Future Journalist Awards, which is open to young people aged seven to 18, is usually aimed at budding journalists from Staffordshire and the surrounding counties. However, as this year’s awards will be streamed online, the competition has been opened up to entrants from across the UK.

To enter, applicants need to write an article, review or blog, or create a short video or audio clip.

Organised by third-year journalism and PR students, the Awards aim to inspire young people considering a career in journalism.

Ian Whittell, course leader for Sports Journalism at Staffordshire University, said: “The competition is a great way to discover and inspire talent who have a passion for journalism and hopefully in the future would consider joining our course to further develop their skills. Due to Covid-19 restrictions, we are switching our face-to-face school workshops to an e-learning format. One benefit of this is that schools from anywhere in the UK can now take part. Even if we can have an awards event at the University in March, we will still stream it online so those that can’t attend in person can still participate.

“Students from the journalism department will be engaging with schools and colleges over the next couple of months to provide learning materials that will promote the competition, explain how the students can enter, and provide an insight into why they should consider a career in journalism.  We’ve had some high-quality submission in previous years, and we expect the same standard this year. We would encourage anyone with a passion for writing or blogging or an interest in creating vlogs or podcasts to enter.”

Teachers can book an e-workshop at their school by emailing

Diana Shabani, a student at St John Fisher Catholic College in Newcastle-under-Lyme, is a previous winner of the Awards.

She commented: “I want to pursue a career in writing and film making and I found the competition particularly beneficial in providing me with the opportunity to experience journalism, which itself is a pathway to a number of careers. Another benefit of the awards is that I now have an extremely effective way to enhance my application when it comes to applying for university.”

Deadline for the competition is February 26, 2021 and full details on how to enter can be found on the competition website:

All finalists from each of the five categories will be invited to a special award ceremony to take place in March.

There will be three winners per category: best written content, best video, and best audio. Each will win a £50 Amazon voucher and have their work published on the StaffsLive website.

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