Jenan Taylor awarded the Guy Morrison Prize

Jenan Taylor has won the Guy Morrison Prize for Literary Journalism.
Jenan Taylor has won the Guy Morrison Prize for Literary Journalism.

Monash University’s Jenan Taylor has earned national recognition for her unique pauper story, winning the Guy Morrison Prize for Literary Journalism.

Jenan,  a Master of Journalism student, was presented with her prize at the Sydney Writers’ Festival on May 22, which coincided with UTS’s anthology launch.

Her award-winning story, A Quiet Farewell, was published in The Weekend Australian Magazine.

Jenan’s prize follows her recent success as the Melbourne Press Club’s 2014 Student Journalist of the Year, awarded for the same investigative story.

Applications for UTS’s Guy Morrison Prize are invited from Australian undergraduate or postgraduate students who are studying either journalism, communication or writing.

Jenan is thrilled to win the prize for her investigation into what happens when a pauper dies.

“My story on the pauper funeral of a single mother was an attempt to highlight what we take for granted in contemporary Australia isn’t necessarily within everyone’s reach, not even after we die,” Jenan said.

“It’s difficult journalism that keeps throwing up, among other challenges, its own range of moral and ethical questions, the more I practice it.

“However, I’m absolutely elated to have to won this award and feel particularly encouraged to keep pursuing this kind of journalism.”

Judge Chris Feik described Jenan’s article as a “wonderful piece of reporting”.

“It does what the best journalism does: it tells us things we didn’t know,” Mr Feik wrote.

“It explains what happens when a pauper dies. We witness in vivid close-up the embalming of an anonymous woman who ‘could not afford to die’.

“Throughout the piece, the writer addresses the deceased subject. ‘Am I ready to touch your skin,’ Jenan asks, and decides: ‘I am’. Such a device could easily seem forced, but is handled skilfully here.” 

Jenan said it was too easy in this age of 24-hour news to lose sight of the complexities and nuances behind the headlines.

“For me literary journalism is about revealing these insights and even throwing a spotlight on lives which we would normally never think twice about, which is why I’ve always been attracted to it,” she said.

Jenan said Monash journalism staff Associate Professor Philip Chubb and Dr Monica Jackson were encouraging as she researched her story, and thanked them for their support.


Students retrace historic footsteps of the Great War

Monash journalism students have produced historically significant work in News Corp publications to mark the centenary of the Great War and the contribution of Australian soldiers.

Alana Mitchelson.
Alana Mitchelson.

Sir Keith Murdoch Journalism Scholarship recipient Alana Mitchelson worked tirelessly to produce outstanding research for the Herald Sun and other News Corp publications, including and the Geelong Advertiser.

Alana, who spent three months researching stories on the Great War, contributed to a segment on The Today Show on Channel 9 after program producers followed up on her research.

Alana Mitchelson compiled information for the Herald Sun's poster and page of the Gallipoli landing. Source: Herald Sun
Alana Mitchelson compiled information for the Herald Sun’s poster and page of the Gallipoli landing. Source: Herald Sun

Alana said the Herald Sun assignment put her investigative skills to their first true test.

“The work was at times quite challenging but was extremely rewarding,” Alana said.

“I was able to track down the relatives of a WWI veteran and reunite them with a treasure trove of their grandfather’s possessions, including his military medal, which had been lost to the family for over 30 years.

“This was an especially moving story to be a part of and the grandsons were very grateful to me for my persistence.”

Alana was also recognised for her contributions to the Herald Sun’s Gallipoli magazine.

“It was so special to see my byline among all of these highly experienced senior journalists’ names in the Gallipoli centenary supplement, such as Andrew Rule and Patrick Carlyon,” Alana said.

“This experience has definitely reinforced my strong desire to continue pursuing a career in journalism.”

 CEW Bean Prize recipients Elizabeth Johnson, Louise Almeida, Robert Moseley and Jason Walls filmed Monash students at Gallipoli in Turkey last year, who shared their views on one of Australian history’s significant stories.

The students’ work was published in the Herald Sun and the Courier Mail in Queensland in the lead-up to Anzac Day on April 25.

Elizabeth Johnson.
Elizabeth Johnson.

Elizabeth, who spoke at a RSL centenary event on Anzac Day, said it was an honour to share her experiences and research.

“In terms of my experience, today of all days really brings together the experience and draws our major project to an end,” Elizabeth said, who shared her story with the Herald Sun.

“I feel I have learned a perspective that is just not taught in schools, that is, the true horrors of war, or in Bruce Scates’s words ‘a slow, sordid and remorseless war of attrition’.”

Elizabeth said hiking the cliffs on the Gallipoli peninsula was such a challenge, but it was one she felt privileged to have the opportunity to do.

The Great War Centenary will honour Australians who  served their country.
The Great War centenary honoured Australians who served their country.

“It makes me think about how many of those boys and men had that same feeling of anticipation, but i wonder how many of them felt lucky in the end,” she said.

” I walked where they walked, I fell where they fell, but I got back up, dusted the dirt off and kept on going. Lest we forget those who couldn’t and didn’t get back up.”

Masters of Journalism student Luke Mortimer.
Luke Mortimer.

The 2015 CEW Bean Prize recipients are Masters journalism students Luke Mortimer and Uma Muthia, who will film in Gallipoli and the Western Front in July.

Uma Muthia is a recipient of the CEW Bean Prize.
Uma Muthia is a recipient of the CEW Bean Prize.

Luke and Uma will study 12-point unit, ATS3387 Beyond Gallipoli: Australians in the Great War.

Professor Scates has led several tours of the battlefields and commemorative sites of the Great War, including the Premier of Victoria’s Spirit of Anzac.

Visit Monash’s Great War Centenary website for more information on these tours.


How Hackett made it back to championship swimming

By Julie Tullberg

Grant Hackett’s foundation training for the 1,500m freestyle event, which started more than 20 years ago, has been a key reason for his shock return to the Australian swimming team.

Experts and swimming fans alike have been amazed at Hackett’s ability to bounce back after just six months of training and a six-year break from competitive swimming.

Hackett qualified for the Australian men’s 4x200m freestyle relay after finishing fourth in the 200m final at the 2015 FINA World Championships selection trials in Sydney earlier this month.

Hackett, at 34, is the oldest athlete in history to qualify for the Australian swimming team and will contest the 2015 FINA World Championships in Kazan, Russia in July.

How could this possibly happen?

Fitness in the pool

There are two physiological reasons which may explain why Hackett returned to form so quickly. As one of the fittest swimmers in the world during his ten-year reign as 1,500m freestyle king, Hackett developed a high-level endurance capacity.

Hackett says his lung capacity has been developed to an exceptional level and interestingly, it has not declined during the past six years.

His blood health hasn’t changed, which indicates his enormous ability to cope with fatigue under physical stress during competition.

Hackett told the Sydney Morning Herald:

“All of a sudden, you see yourself improve and your body holding up more and more and you actually think, ‘I’m physically okay’.

I did all the testing. My bloods, my lung capacity … it was the same as when I competed before.”

There is a reasonable explanation of why Hackett’s physiological capacities have avoided decline. Hackett maintained a good level of fitness during his six-year retirement, which helped him return to near-peak condition.

Athletes may reach their physical peak between 25 and 35 years of age. But swimmers normally peak before they reach 25 because of the intensive nature of swimming, the risk of shoulder injuries and the expense to continue long-term in the sport.

There is no reason why Hackett cannot continue to improve in the lead-up to the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

Research shows it is physically possible for Hackett to be competitive in the 200m and 400m freestyle events -– if he is willing to give himself that chance.

But it may be too late for Hackett to return to the 1,500m freestyle, as it takes years to build for this specialised event. The shorter freestyle distance events are more achievable for Hackett.

Hackett’s return has generated excitement within the Australian team, as the swimmers are looking forward to his leadership and wisdom. He will prepare in a professional manner, and inspire those around him with his meticulous approach and positive demeanour.

Hackett returned from the United States a year ago after having treatment for addiction of Stilnox sleeping pills. His specialised medical treatment occurred after the culmination of ugly public incidents, including his marriage breakdown to singer Candice Alley.

Hackett’s reputation was damaged and he was determined to look forward and rebuild his life positively.

Back on the Gold Coast

Hackett returned to familiar surroundings on the Gold Coast after receiving valuable advice from his support group.

He rejoined his boyhood swimming squad at Miami, under the tutelage of Australian coach Denis Cotterell.

After speaking with US Olympic great Michael Phelps last year, Hackett began swimming training for the pure joy of it. He was a retired athlete and the past pressures were behind him.

Hackett quickly found his rhythm and those foundation years of training served him well as he surprised himself with incredible times at the trials in Sydney. He even scored a bronze medal in the 400m freestyle final.

A happy athlete is a successful athlete, and this has proven to be the case with Hackett. Back in his home town, with family, friends and a supportive partner, Debbie Savage, Hackett appears settled and content.

A highly intelligent athlete, Hackett’s recent choices and wise outlook have proven to work in his favour. He says the joy to swim without pressure has been a factor in his impressive results in the pool.

Not all comebacks are successful

While Hackett has made a stunning comeback, former champion Ian Thorpe struck a rocky path during his comeback attempt for the 2012 London Olympics. Thorpe trained overseas, hoping to rebuild his form and fitness in relative isolation in Switzerland.

But it proved a big mistake. Thorpe failed to make another Olympic team. He cited his lack of racing practice and physical preparation in the lead-up to the London trials.

There are huge differences in the nature of Hackett and Thorpe’s comebacks. Hackett returned to familiar surroundings, where he had achieved so much success previously, whereas Thorpe chose the opposite approach – and isolated himself.

Thorpe also had sponsorship commitments and placed pressure on himself as he returned, while Hackett is now swimming for pleasure.

A caring and functional home environment is often the most comforting place for athletes, as they aim for success on the world stage. That’s why Hackett is thriving once more.

This story first appeared in The Conversation.


Monash graduates make their mark at News Corp

Monash journalism graduates are scoring key roles and winning awards at News Corp publications, particularly the largest newspaper in the country, the Herald Sun.

Several graduates have secured positions this year, while other journalists have won major awards in the Quills and Walkleys, and in the News Corp annual awards.

Caroline Schelle.
Caroline Schelle.

Masters student Caroline Schelle has recently commenced a News Corp traineeship based at the Herald Sun’s Southbank offices.  The program runs for a year before the journalists vie for positions in News Corp newsrooms.

Caroline will rotate among various Herald and Weekly Times publications, including The Weekly Times, mX,  Leader Newspapers, the Geelong Advertiser and also join the Herald Sun’s digital team.

Jade Gailberger.
Jade Gailberger.

Jade Gailberger, who also secured a News Corp traineeship,  is currently based at The Advertiser in Adelaide.

Jade, who is gaining experience in news and sport, writes stories that also appear in other News Corp publications, including the Herald Sun.

Sophie Smith, who graduated from Monash in 2007, has worked for Time Inc UK as a sports reporter.

Sophie recently secured a news reporting position on the Herald Sun after returning from London.

Sophie Smith.
Sophie Smith.

Sophie has returned to Melbourne after covering major sporting events in Europe and Asia, including the Spring Classics (2013, 2014), Giro d’Italia (2013, 2014), Tour de France (2012, 2013, 2014), UCI Road World Championships (2012, 2013, 2014), Saitama Criterium and the 2012 London Olympics.

Sophie has recently covered the Essendon Football Club saga, in the aftermath of the AFL anti-doping tribunal’s result.

Masters student Caroline Zielinksi is a Herald Sun-based digital journalist and producer, creating stories for five News Corp mastheads, including the Herald Sun,, The Daily Telegraph, the Courier Mail and The Advertiser.

Caroline formerly worked as a breaking news journalist at The Age and is skilled at delivering high-quality content at high speed.

Kate Salemme has been appointed as and AFL content producer at News Corp,  generating digital packages for all News Corp mastheads, including the Herald Sun.

Kate, who has worked in digital communications at Hawthorn Football Club, completed a successful sports internship at the Herald Sun in 2010. She will be based at the Herald Sun.

Tiffany Korssen.
Tiffany Korssen.

Masters student Tiffany Korssen, a recent finalist in the Melbourne Press Club Student of the Year, has been appointed as an editorial assistant at the Herald Sun.

Tiffany has produced many interesting stories in the Herald Sun in recent weeks.

Brendan Casey.
Brendan Casey.

Brendan Casey, who graduated at Monash in 2010, is working as a social media producer at the Herald Sun.

Brendan has been innovative in his work for the Herald Sun’s department of the internet.

Other prominent Monash graduates include Herald Sun national politics reporter Annika Smethurst, award-winning AFL reporter Sam Landsberger,  Quill winner and news reporter Monique Hore,  Walkley and News Corp young journalist of the year Ashley Argoon,  and Herald Sun city reporter Christopher Gillett.

Herald Sun editorial assistants Chad van Estrop and Phillippa Butt have also produced many stories for Melbourne’s largest metropolitan newspaper.

The Sir Keith Murdoch scholarship winner Alana Mitchelson has recently finished her three-month internship at the Herald Sun.

Alana has won Pulliam Journalism Fellowship, and she will soon work at the Indy Star in Indianapolis, the United States.

Monash journalism alumni Jonno Nash has recently accepted a TV reporting role at Channel 10 after working at the Herald Sun for several years.

Other Monash University alumni and Herald Sun journalists include Gold Walkley winner and Underbelly author Andrew Rule, general news reporter Shannon Deery and AFL digital editor Alistair Paton.


Endurance: Australian Stories of Drought

Dr Deb Anderson Journalism lecturer Dr Deb Anderson has published a fascinating collection of oral histories in her book, Endurance: Australian Stories of Drought.

CSIRO Publishing and Museum Victoria invested in the project, which has attracted much interest from all sectors, including an intrigued public audience.

Here is an overview … As the Big Dry swept across large tracts of Australian land last decade, a dramatic rise in public awareness of climate change intensified debate over rural futures.

It was an era the Federal Government recorded as having “severely tested rural endurance”.

What might it mean, though, to endure drought in a climate-change world?

This book sheds light on what drought and climate change mean to rural Australians – in their words.

Endurance begins by tracing the power of battler histories in Australian culture and politics, exploring the relationship between climate and identity in a dry place.

Here, the past informs the present: this book underscores the significance of lived experience for people whose communities are in long-term decline.

This holistic approach offers a much-needed context for the life stories at the heart of the book – of rural Australians faced with the frightening prospect of more severe and frequent droughts under climate change.

For four years during the millennium drought, Age journalist and historian Deb Anderson recorded oral histories in drought-affected communities dotted across the semi-arid Mallee wheat-belt in Victoria.

In these stories, people shared how they live with, represent and struggle with drought as a core component of regional life and identity.

Fortuitously, the history collection captured a marked shift in public ideas on Australian climate – a moment of big history – prompting reflection on the meaning of drought and exposing the core interpretive problems of climate change.

Amid the apprehension of climate change, a greater narrative resurfaced: a battler history of endurance, revealing livelihoods and identities were at stake.

Endurance presents twelve of these multi-generational stories of climate, which form a new collection for Museum Victoria, accompanied by a striking series of documentary-style photographs.

By sensitively and compassionately seeking answers to historical questions of cultural adaptation, this book shows how conceptions of climate are shaped by narratives of identity – in this case, forming both a cultural legacy and a shield from anxieties about the future.
As the nation looks ahead, Endurance uncovers a rural Australia clinging to its past, and now gearing up to endure more.


Monash Journalism research

Head of journalism Associate Professor Philip Chubb.
Head of journalism Associate Professor Philip Chubb.

Research is a vital part of Monash Journalism. It contributes knowledge to a field and industry in transformation, situates journalism in our democratic system and informs our teaching.

This is a very exciting and challenging time conducting research in our field of inquiry – journalism studies.

Our staff cover a wide variety of research topics – for details and publications please click on the staff name on the staff page.

Our topics fall into at least one of the following research clusters that describe the focus of our research.

Journalism and Environment

  • As climate change and other environmental issues inevitably gain prominence on the public agenda, this cluster covers the entire environment – not only climate change. How journalists and media report climate change is one example of research topics covered.

    Dr Deb Anderson.
    Monash journalism researcher Dr Deb Anderson.
  • The cluster is inherently interdisciplinary and global, which allows for wide research collaborations.

Journalism and Democracy

  • This cluster covers a number of research areas – investigative journalism, access to information, media policy, media accountability and regulation, the public perception of journalism, the role of journalism, the transformation of the journalism industry, etc.

    Research coordinator journalism Dr Johan Lidberg.
    Research coordinator journalism Dr Johan Lidberg.
  • As journalism deals with the transformation brought on by technology, its role in and relation to democracy and the public will change. This means that this research cluster will become increasingly relevant. One current example is the balance between anti-terror laws and freedom of expression and the press.


Jenan Taylor wins Student Journalist of the Year

Jenan Taylor has won the Melbourne Press Club's Student Journalist of the Year
Jenan Taylor has won the Melbourne Press Club’s Student Journalist of the Year

Monash University’s Jenan Taylor has won the Melbourne Press Club’s 2014 Student Journalist of the Year for her investigative story,  A Quiet Farewell.

Jenan, a Master of Journalism student, has earned praised from judges for her “original and compassionate” investigation into what happens when a pauper dies.

Her article was published in The Weekend Australian Magazine.

Jenan said the possibility of winning an award was the last thing on her mind when she started working on her story.

“The article turned out to take an unusual approach, which, although it picked at the fabric of contemporary issues,  didn’t hang on any current hot topic,” Jenan said, who was awarded at the Quills at Crown Palladium on Friday night.

“I’m overwhelmed that all the hard work paid off further in the form of this Student Journalist of the Year award. So much of this achievement has had to do with the skills I’ve been taught and the guidance I’ve received from all my journalism lecturers here at Monash over the years.”

Jenan said she was particularly grateful to Associate Professor Philip Chubb and Monica Jackson for their encouragement.

Tiffany Korssen was a finalist in the 2014 Student Journalist of the Year.
Tiffany Korssen was a finalist in the 2014 Student Journalist of the Year.

Monash’s Master of Journalism student Tiffany Korssen was a finalist in the 2014 Student Journalist of the Year award for her investigation, Suicide Survivors Left in the Lurch.

Her story revealed the lack of treatment and care available for suicide survivors that captured the personal experiences of those concerned.

Head of journalism Associate Prof Chubb said having masters’ students shortlisted for this major award was a testament to the strength of Monash’s program.

“Having Jenan win feels like a terrific vindication of our efforts and direction,” he said.

“More importantly, this prize is a life-changer for Jenan, who had a great idea for a piece of feature journalism and then worked hard to bring it off brilliantly.”

Bill Birnbauer, a senior lecturer in investigative journalism, said Monash journalism’s students repeatedly won the industry’s top journalism awards because “we teach them the fundamental basic skills of news breaking, feature writing and digital production”.

“We imbue in them a questioning and determined attitude to get to the unvarnished truth,” Mr Birnbauer said.

“They do the rest themselves. Jenan’s story was one of the most original, crafted and touching stories I have read in a long time.”

Monash journalist graduate and Herald Sun journalist Monique Hore.
Monash journalist graduate and Herald Sun journalist Monique Hore.

Monash alumnae, Monique Hore, teamed with Herald Sun senior journalist Ruth Lamperd to win the 2014 Quill for Best Coverage of an Issue or Event for White Death.

Ruth and Monique’s five-month investigation revealed a cover-up over a deadly asbestos factory.

“Receiving a Quill award alongside Ruth is a huge honour,” Monique said.

“I enjoyed working with the residents of Sunshine North to raise important health questions. As a young journalist, it was also brilliant to work with someone so experience as Ruth.”


Jonno’s journey to the TV newsroom

Jonno Nash is a TV reporter for Channel 10.
Jonno Nash is a TV reporter for Channel 10.

Monash journalism graduate Jonno Nash has made the transition from one of the best print and digital newsrooms in the country to the world of television.

Jonno,  who reported at the Herald Sun until recently, was recruited by Channel 10 in a highly competitive climate.

“I’ve always wanted to step in front of the camera but held off those ambitions after pursuing print,” Jonno said.

“There is a creative element to packaging TV news reports which is appealing to me.

“Unlike print, there isn’t a rigid structure to TV reporting. The journalists guide the audience through the narrative and let the images tell the story.”

Monash’s video journalism unit introduced Jonno to TV journalism.

“While I didn’t excel academically in this subject, I still value the skills I learnt in this course,” Jonno said.

“I still occasionally look at the video assignment pieces I produced. Despite not being polished pieces, I recognise this subject for pricking my interest in TV.”

Jonno said spending more than three years in the Herald Sun newsroom had been invaluable in improving his news sense and ability to craft hard and soft news stories.

“Fortunately these skills are transferable between mediums and has put me in good stead to chase and develop stories at Channel 10,” Jonno said.

Jonno said he built contacts while developing his career.

“I went out of my way to talk to as many industry professionals as possible,” he said.

“From sending an email to a Monash lecturer or arranging a meeting with a journalist on Twitter, I made sure I got my name out there and tapped into the knowledge of others.

“There are a number of jobs out there that aren’t advertised and getting the inside whisper on potential positions or an endorsement from an industry person can go a big way in securing a job in a metropolitan newsroom.”

Jonno said it was important to take on board any feedback to improve yourself.

“Don’t disregard the role feedback can play in improving yourself. Seek it and learn,” he said.

“If you article or piece is altered, find out why. Being adaptable and coachable are crucial components. I have also found investigating the pathways of media identities particularly valuable. LinkedIn is handy for this.”

“I have replicated aspects of work to that of my role models in hope I can one day reach their positions,” Jonno said.

” You’ll find they too endured a hard slog to get their foot in the door.

“Don’t be afraid to still do unpaid work. I still volunteer a couple of hours a week in hope that one day it might prosper into something attractive.”

Jonno said persistence was the key in the competitive field.

“Be ruthless and persistent. There aren’t many jobs out there and you’re competing against thousands of candidates outside your cohort across the country,” he said.

“Graduates are more willing to live interstate, so jobs aren’t handed out to locals.

“Send emails and make phone calls to editors and producers to sell yourself. It’s still very much a ‘who you know’ industry, so boost your profile by meeting as many people as possible.”


Luke and Uma awarded 2015 CEW Bean Prize

Monash University’s Master of Journalism students Luke Mortimer and Uma Muthia are recipients of the prestigious 2015 CEW Bean Prize.

Luke and Uma will join Monash historian Professor Bruce Scates and Arts students in Gallipoli, Prato in Italy and the Western Front to retrace the footsteps of Australian soldiers and gain valuable insight into Australia’s involvement in the Great War.

Masters of Journalism student Luke Mortimer.
Masters of Journalism student Luke Mortimer.

Luke, also the editor of mojo,  is a well-qualified government media adviser and recently completed a successful internship at the Herald Sun.

Uma has excellent qualifications in history, French, International Relations and is combat medical attendant with the Army Reserve.

The journalism students will film on location, as part of the study program to record historical sites and oral histories of the Great War.

The Beyond Gallipoli program runs from June 29 to July 24.

This award is especially significant as 2015 is the centenary year to mark the 1915 Gallipoli landing.

Luke Mortimer interviews backpackers for the Herald Sun. Picture: Valeriu Campan
Luke Mortimer interviews backpackers for the Herald Sun. Picture: Valeriu Campan

Luke said he was extremely grateful to be given the responsibilities of being a CEW Bean Prize recipient in this centenary year of the Anzac.

“For generations, the digger has been heralded as a role model for young Australians, but as our young encounter new challenges trying to find their identity in a multicultural Australia, so too should the narrative of our Diggers campaigns evolve,” Luke said.

“There’s no better opportunity to take on this responsibility than being on the ground in Europe, investigating the Anzacs shared experience and interrogating our shared memory with other nationalities in the horror and humanity of World War I.

Uma Muthia is a recipient of the CEW Bean Prize.
Uma Muthia is a recipient of the CEW Bean Prize.

Uma said she was so surprised when she learned of her prize, she dropped her phone.

“That surprise turned into sheer excitement at the prospect of filming on location to record historical sites of the Great War with Professor Bruce Scates and fellow Monash students,” Uma said.

“As a Masters of Journalism/Masters of International Relations student, I ambitiously applied for the prize as it allowed me to combine my two areas of study in a practical and unique context overseas.

“The prize also offers a distinctive opportunity to retrace the footsteps of Australian soldiers who fought to protect the very freedoms we enjoy here today.”

Luke and Uma will study 12-point unit, ATS3387 Beyond Gallipoli: Australians in the Great War.

Professor Scates has led several tours of the battlefields and commemorative sites of the Great War, including the Premier of Victoria’s Spirit of Anzac.

Visit Monash’s Great War Centenary website for more information on these tours.


Masters journalism students named as Quill finalists

MONASH University Master of Journalism students, Jenan Taylor and Tiffany Korssen, have been named finalists for the Melbourne Press Club’s Student Journalist of the Year Award.

The winner will be announced on Friday, March 20, at the annual Quill Awards dinner at Crown Palladium in Melbourne.

Jenan Taylor has been shortlisted for Melbourne Press Club's Student of the Year award.
Jenan Taylor has been shortlisted for Melbourne Press Club’s Student of the Year award.

Jenan’s investigation, A Quiet Farewell, was published in the Weekend Australian Magazine.

“I was interested in why in this day and age some Australians still have pauper funerals and decided to write this piece when I found there was a paucity of information about this topic,” Jenan said.

“My piece focused on the no-service funeral of a single mother because secondary research revealed that single mothers were among the persons most likely to be on social and economic welfare.

“And hence, she ideally represented the cross section of the community who potentially are most likely to face similar decisions when it comes to the matter of their death.”

Jenan said the tuition she received the course was instrumental in the way she tackled the piece.

“I’d love to see more long-form journalism in the mainstream Australian media, and this is the type of journalism I hope to be able to do in future,” she said.

Tiffany Korssen's entry has been shortlisted in the Quills.
Tiffany Korssen’s entry has been shortlisted in the Quills.

Tiffany’s article, Suicide Survivors Left in the Lurch, revealed the lack of treatment and care available for suicide survivors that captured the personal experiences of those concerned.

Tiffany said she wrote the article for her  investigative reporting subject with Monash senior lecturer Bill Birnbauer last semester.

“It was an amazing experience and taught me so much about coming up with original ideas and researching,” Tiffany said.

“I’ve learned I love interviewing as a method of research. The process also confirmed to me how passionate I am about journalism.”

Tiffany said being shortlisted for the Quill was an unexpected honour.

“Reading the other shortlisted entries has opened my eyes to the possibilities of the craft and has motivated me to continue to look for stories and be creative in how I deliver them to my audience,” she said.

“I’m really excited about attending the awards dinner and can’t wait for what the rest of the course is going to bring.”

The other two Quills student finalists are Julie Milland, of Melbourne University, for The Trials and Tribulations and Michael Walsh, of RMIT University, for The Shardy Crew.

The Quill winner will receive a $3000 prize and will enjoy work experience and mentoring opportunities at major media outlets.


Where are the women in radio?

Emma Nobel has produced Where are the Women?
Emma Nobel has produced Where are the Women?

Monash journalism Honours graduate Emma Nobel has produced an intriguing radio documentary, Where are the Women?, which was aired on Sydney-based FBi Radio’s All The Best on Saturday, March 7.

Emma’s practice-based project was submitted with an accompanying exegesis. All The Best is an influential radio documentary program in Australia starting careers of a new generation of audio producers now at ABC Radio National and independent media projects.

Emma’s Honours supervisor, MFJ Head of School Associate Professor Mia Lindgren, said the radio documentary examined why there were so few female radio presenters on Melbourne radio.

“Emma interviewed leading radio broadcasters Jon Faine and Neil Mitchell about the lack of female radio voices,” Associate Professor Lindgren said.

Emma is keen for the dialogue about the lack of female radio voices to continue.

“Why don’t we hear more women on the radio? It’s a debate that’s been raging in Australia since the medium was introduced to our shores, but comparatively little academic research about the topic exists,” Emma said.

“The radio industry has neglected to pay close attention to the lack of women on air. As someone who wants to work in radio, I do wonder why there are so few female broadcasters in Australia and whether being female will be an obstacle in my own career.”

All the Best: Where are the Women?

Emma said many of the interviews suggested those in the industry felt that individual, rather than systematic, factors were seen to negatively impact women’s careers.

“Men dominated in all on-air positions across all stations in all timeslots every day of the week, though the findings may have been different had I been following this project during summer,” Emma said.

“ABC 774 often has women ‘fill in’ for their male colleagues while they are on holiday. Women were seen to be over-represented in ‘supporting’ production roles.”

Emma said her interviews with broadcasters across commercial, public and community radio, gave her a unique view of the industry.

“It was an eye-opening experience that allowed me an insight into the industry I want to work in, as well as unparalleled access to the broadcasters themselves,” she said.

“You bet I asked about getting a foot in the door! I was thrilled that All The Best included the documentary as part of their International Women’s Day special.”


Alana awarded Pulliam Journalism Fellowship

Alana Mitchelson has been awarded the Pulliam Journalism Fellowship.
Alana Mitchelson has been awarded the Pulliam Journalism Fellowship.

Monash journalism student Alana Mitchelson has been awarded the Pulliam Journalism Fellowship at the Indy Star in Indianapolis.

Alana is one of 10 fellows to be awarded the prestigious fellowship, which attracts applicants worldwide.

The fellowship involves a 10-week paid placement in the Indy Star newsroom and also attending writing workshops and seminars conducted by journalism experts.

Alana, who recently won the Sir Keith Murdoch Journalism Scholarship and completed a three-month paid internship at the Herald Sun, said she had hoped to work as a reporter overseas.

“I have had my heart set on undertaking an overseas reporting trip for some time as I wanted to develop a broader perspective of the journalism industry before seeking full-time work in Melbourne,” Alana said.

“After many hours of online research and almost 30 applications later, it is hugely encouraging that the Indy Star has faith in my abilities, especially having applied from such a distance, and that all my hard work is paying off.

Alana said she was keen to learn more about American culture, make international professional connections and grasp a better sense of how journalism differs in the US.

“Being somewhat of an ‘outsider’, I hope to bring new ideas to the Indy Star and offer a fresh perspective,” she said.

“I am really excited to have been selected for such a prestigious fellowship and I am looking forward to challenging myself throughout this new venture.”

Click here to learn more about the Pulliam Journalism Fellowship.


Caroline and Jade score News Corp traineeships

MONASH journalism 2014 students, Caroline Schelle and Jade Gailberger, have been rewarded with News Corp traineeships after a competitive selection process.

Both journalists begin their traineeships on February 9 this year.

Caroline Schelle.
Caroline Schelle.

Caroline, a Masters of Journalism student, said she was looking forward to learning from “some of the best journalists in the country”.

“I’m thrilled to begin my cadetship at News Corp and am looking forward to a fantastic opportunity where my skills are put to the test,” Caroline said.

“I will be rotating through four major News Corp publications including the Herald Sun, The Weekly Times, Leader Community Newspapers and the Geelong Advertiser.”

Caroline said it was a demanding selection process, with hundreds of worthy applicants.

“I believe the skills that I gained at Monash University helped me achieve success,” Caroline said.

“Monash journalism staff have always been supportive about my goals and their focus on practical skills allowed me to get ahead in a competitive field.

“This included a focus on writing news for print and digital publications, radio and television skills and ensuring students undertake independent internships.”

Jade Gailberger.
Jade Gailberger.

Jade, who will report for The Advertiser in Adelaide, said she felt “very excited and fortunate to be given this opportunity”.

“Starting my cadetship and career with News Corp just a few months out of uni proves that hard work does pay off,” Jade said, who recently finished her journalism training.

“I completed several internships throughout my final year, including placements at the Herald Sun and The Age which wouldn’t have been possible without the support of Monash,” Jade said.

“I can’t thank them enough for their continual advice and time, and it just goes to show that hard work and effort throughout your journalism studies doesn’t go unnoticed.”

Jade advises journalism students to achieve “good grades, gain as much experience as possible to build your portfolio, and always reminding yourself that you will eventually be rewarded for all your effort”.


Our Staff

Associate Professor Phil Chubb Head of Program
Joint coordinator of coursework masters program
Coordinator of PhD program
Associate Professor Mia Lindgren Head of School of Media, Film and Journalism
Associate Professor Fay Anderson
Dr Deb Anderson Joint coordinator of coursework masters program
Dr Nasya Bahfen
Dr Andréa Baker
Mr Bill Birnbauer Executive Editor student publications
mojo, Dangerous Ground
Dr Stephanie Brookes
Mr Robert Carey
Ms Monica Jackson
Dr Johan Lidberg Research coordinator journalism
Professor Chris Nash
Ms Julie Tullberg



Aaron’s hard yards pay off with Cricket Australia gig

Aaron Pereira is now Cricket Australia's media coordinator.
Aaron Pereira is now Cricket Australia’s media coordinator.

Monash University journalism graduate Aaron Pereira has secured a  full-time job at Cricket Australia, working as its media coordinator.

Aaron shares his views on his journey from Monash journalism to his impressive role at Cricket Australia.

Q: How do you feel about your new appointment at Cricket Australia?

A: I am extremely humbled that an organisation I idolised as a child now have me working. It’s great to be able to live and breathe sport for a living, especially Australia’s favourite sport! One day I’ll be rubbing shoulders with Michael Slater in the media box and the next I’ll be interviewing Greg Chappell, it’s surreal.

Q: How has Monash helped prepare you for the role?

A: It was always a goal for me to get into Monash’s journalism program and it didn’t disappoint. I received the best advice from people who had previously thrived in the business and the avenues that opened up because I was a Monash student were plentiful. I don’t think I’d be in the role I am now without my experience at Monash. Best decision I ever made.

Q: What is the importance of practical experience?

A: This is something that needs to be stressed … go out and get experience! It’s cliché but true – it’s never too late and you can never get enough. I did placements at the Box Hill Hawks, the Herald Sun and Metro Media to name a few, and I maintained a part-time job at Network Ten. These not only allow you the chance to refine your skills but also to make connections you will no doubt need.

Q: Any advice for journalism students?

A: Entering Journalism is daunting, but if you really want it, and you work hard enough, doors will open up.


Applications open for the 2015 CEW Bean Prize

The Great War Centenary will honour Australians who  served their country.
The Great War Centenary will honour Australians who served their country.

2015 third-year and Masters journalism students are encouraged to apply to be part of a unique European experience as a recipient of the prestigious CEW Bean Prize.

Two award-winning students will join Monash historian Professor Bruce Scates and students in Gallipoli, Prato and the Western Front to retrace the footsteps of Australian soldiers and gain valuable insight into Australia’s involvement in the Great War.

This award is especially significant as 2015 is the centenary year to mark the 1915 Gallipoli landing. The recipients will enrol in 12-point unit, ATS3387 Beyond Gallipoli: Australians in the Great War, and receive $500 towards travel costs. More funding is available through Monash Abroad.

The journalism students will film on location, as part of the study program to record historical sites and oral histories of the Great War. The Beyond Gallipoli program runs from June 29 to July 24.

Professor Bruce Scates.
Professor Bruce Scates.

Professor Scates has led several tours of the battlefields and commemorative sites of the Great War, including the Premier of Victoria’s Spirit of Anzac. Visit Monash’s Great War Centenary website for more information

Applicants should prepare their CV and a 150-word statement on why they would like to win the CEW Bean Prize. Applications close on Friday, February 6 at 5pm.

To apply or inquire, email Julie Tullberg or phone 9903 4128.


Alana wins Sir Keith Murdoch Scholarship

Alana Mitchelson has won the Sir Keith Murdoch Journalism Scholarship.
Alana Mitchelson has won the Sir Keith Murdoch Journalism Scholarship.

Monash University journalism student Alana Mitchelson has won the Sir Keith Murdoch Journalism Scholarship, a three-month paid internship at the Herald Sun.

The scholarship commemorates the contribution of Sir Keith’s journalism to changing the course of the Gallipoli campaign in World War I.

Alana will commence her scholarship from December 2014 to February 2015 and will work on the Herald Sun’s Gallipoli centenary coverage.

Alana wrote an 800-word news story on the 1915 Gallipoli landing, which successfully fulfilled the scholarship’s requirements.

“I found the application process itself a hugely rewarding experience and enjoyed reading through old newspapers as well as personal diary accounts to better authenticise my contemporary take of the Gallipoli landing,” Alana said.

“I often felt it was difficult to do the piece justice as I felt so far removed from the horrific realities faced by those young Australian men in 1915.”

Alana said she had not previously been aware of Sir Keith Murdoch’s key influence in changing the course of the Gallipoli campaign.

“I hope this scholarship will draw more awareness to the contents of Murdoch’s letter and just how crucial it was for his honest account to bypass the censor,” she said.

Alana said her three-month scholarship was an amazing opportunity and that it was “nice to have my work recognised on such a level”.




Scanlan wins shooting gold at Glasgow Games

Laetisha Scanlan has won gold at the Commonwealth Games. Picture: Herald Sun
Laetisha Scanlan has won gold at the Commonwealth Games.

Monash journalism graduate Laetisha Scanlan has successfully defended her Commonwealth Games trap shooting title, winning gold at Glasgow.

Laetisha, 24, made a spectacular recovery in the Games final to claim gold from Georgia Konstantinidou of Cyprus.

Laetisha, from Berwick, hit 13 out of 15 targets to defeat Konstantinidou by one target.

She thought her chance to win back-to-back title was gone after an ordinary performance in the third round.

“I finished my third round and I came off and my coach said, ‘You didn’t make the final, it’s time to go home’,” Laetisha told Neil Mitchell on 3AW.

“So I packed all my stuff up and you wouldn’t believe it, he (coach) comes in and said, ‘Well, you’ve got a shoot-off to make the final.”

Laetisha, who also won gold at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, said previous disappointments had made her a stronger competitor.

“I was the underdog, I had no pressure and no one expected anything of me going into the final … so it’s a good learning experience.”

Leatisha has been invited by Mr Mitchell to learn more about radio journalism in the 3AW studios in Melbourne.

She told Mr Mitchell she hoped to practise journalism when her international shooting commitments had eased back.

“I’ll always do shooting because I love it as a sport but it’s very hard to make it a career in Australia,” Leatisha said.


Troops in Terror Zone ‘cutting edge’ in journalism

Members of the Special Operations Task Group prepare to embark on a night time operation in Oruzgan Province, Afghanistan, June 2008. Picture: Supplied
Special Operations Task Group members prepare for a night-time operation in Oruzgan, Afghanistan. Picture: Supplied

Monash University’s journalism and multimedia students have joined forces with The Australian editorial team to produce a digital interactive, Troops in Terror Zone.

The digital interactive, which features cutting-edge technology, tells the story of Australia’s military involvement in the Afghanistan War.

Troops in Terror Zone has been published on The Australian website in the national affairs section.

Second-year journalism student, Warren Clark, directed the project and also wrote the original music with Gavin Butcher.

Master of Multimedia lecturers Jeff Janet and Neil Minott teamed with digital journalism coordinator Julie Tullberg to guide the post-graduate and undergraduate students during first semester.

View Troops in Terror Zone here

Mr Clark said the most rewarding part of this project was having the chance to lead groups of students in the design and creation of the interactive.

“There were many instances where the rationale of design was at odds with journalistic values and this led the group to finding solutions that satisfied both schools of though,” he said.

“I also really enjoyed the challenge that comes with the pressure of a deadline. Trying to maintain a level of clear-mindedness under pressure is crucial and having the chance to experience this first hand was invaluable.”

Monash University’s Head of Journalism, Associate Professor Phil Chubb, congratulated students and staff on the innovative digital production.

“Taking advantage of the new storytelling opportunities available for journalists is a key part of what we teach at Monash,” Assoc Professor Chubb said.

“This is a great example of what that means. Congratulations to the students involved, staff member Julie Tullberg, and our colleagues over in the Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture.”

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The troops worked in tough conditions, while having the spoils of snow-capped mountain views in Afghanistan. Picture: Defence

Mojo executive editor Bill Birnbauer said Troops in the Terror Zone was a wonderful tribute but also represented the fairly recent trend of collaboration in the production of outstanding journalism.

“The project drew in Monash University journalism and arts and design students and staff, a key mainstream media organisation, historians and other players,” Mr Birnbauer said.

“It shows that an international media organisation was ready to work with and trust the staff and students at Monash journalism to produce accurate, entertaining and informative content.

“Once again, it highlights that student journalists working under supervision are both students in the traditional sense but also a resource that is capable of producing great work and doing so at the cutting edge of online technology, as this project shows.

“I know Monash journalism students will continue to produce amazing content that enhances their job prospects.”

An Australian troop on patrol in Afghanistan.



The Journey from AIDS to HIV

The School of Media, Film and Journalism hosted a fascinating preview of Transmission: The Journey from AIDS to HIV on Wednesday, July 16 at Monash University’s MADA building at Caulfield.

Staffan Hildebrand offers insight into his extraordinary film.
Staffan Hildebrand offers insight into his extraordinary film.

Film director Staffan Hildebrand has collected film material, captured between 1986-2013, on HIV/AIDS. The film captures the difficulties during the 1980s and progresses to 2013, which highlights the improvements in HIV treatment and longevity.

Hildebrand answered questions after the preview, which highlighted the depth of work and its target audience for AIDS 2014.

Hildebrand has been filming the HIV/AIDS epidemic since 1986, and is the founder and producer of the Face of AIDS film archive housed at the prestigious Karolinska Institutet in Sweden.

Staffan Hildebrand  (left) with Associate Professor Mia Lindgren.
Staffan Hildebrand (left) with Associate Professor Mia Lindgren.

Transmission: The Journey from AIDS to HIV was commissioned for AIDS 2014, the meeting of the  International AIDS Society to be held in Melbourne, 21-25 July 2014.

This film is a centerpiece for the conference that will engage delegates, HIV/AIDS professionals and the general population by exploring how the Australian response  was coordinated
across political and ideological boundaries and driven by the community but why today,  young people continue to be at risk of HIV.

Staffan Hildebrand (left) with producer Daniel Brace.
Staffan Hildebrand (left) with producer Daniel Brace.

It introduces us to many of the characters who have been influential over the three decades of the fight against HIV and AIDS.

It contains original never before seen historical footage from the Face of AIDS archive, along with new interviews from contrasting countries in the Asia Pacific region and how there is the real possibility of the virtual elimination of the transmission of HIV, and the hope that a cure or vaccine might yet be found.

Yet there are still a range of challenges that need to be overcome.

The Face of AIDS film project raises important questions about the role of documentary and life stories in medical research.