GCU journalism students scoop top prizes

27 May 2016

Robbie Armstrong

Robbie Armstrong

Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) students have scooped six titles in this year’s Scottish Student Journalism Awards.

Robbie Armstrong, an MA Multimedia Journalism student, was named student journalist of the year, and also won the Arts & Entertainment section.

Robbie’s articles have included a feature for The National newspaper about the history of tartan from Scotland to the Caribbean, and the preservation of languages including Scots and Creole.

He has further work experience to complete at The National before moving on to BBC Radio Scotland to celebrate all things foodie on The Kitchen Café programme.

He said: “I was totally taken aback to win. I couldn’t have written articles like this at the start of the course and it really covers all bases, working on the basics as well as strengthening your fortes.”  

Ronnie Charters won the Calum MacDonald Award for overall excellence, with the judges paying tribute to the way he has acted as a mentor to other students via the Caledonian Club.

Third-year Multimedia Journalism student Ronnie first came to GCU as a 17-year-old pupil at St. Andrew’s Secondary School as part of the award-winning Caledonian Club, which aims to widen access to higher education. Through his work as a student mentor, he has since become an ambassador for journalism and is currently a live sports reporter for Rocksport Radio.

Ronnie won the Sports Story of the Year, with fellow third-year Connor Boyd being commended.

Ronnie said: “Calum was an excellent journalist and to be awarded in his honour is a huge privilege. To also win the award for Sport Story was just another fantastic moment of a superb night. The fact GCU received so many nominations and awards is a testament not only to the fantastic journalism talent we have here at GCU, but also a testament to the amazing group of lecturers and staff in the journalism department.”

GCU collected more awards than all other universities and colleges combined at Thursday night’s event in the National Piping Centre, sponsored by STV, the Daily Record, Press Association, Sunday Mail, Scottish Sun and NUJ.

MA student Charlotte Ryan won Feature of the Year, with her classmate Andrew Headspeath commended. Another MA student, Craig Cairns, took the News Story of the Year prize, while fourth-year undergraduate Derek Healey’s politics website was commended in the Student Website of the Year category and MA student Craig Williams was commended in the Scoop of the Year section.