Here are the talented journalists accepted on this year’s early career face to face mentoring scheme. We see them as the next generation of leaders in the news industry.
To find out more about their mentors, please visit the Mentors’ page.
Applications for the 2022 scheme will open in the autumn of 2021. Sign up to our newsletter to be the first to hear about it!
After spending five years working and travelling around the world, Laura started a Masters in Broadcast Journalism at the University of the West of Scotland in 2017. In 2018, she got her first graduate job as an assistant news editor with ITN in London. Shortly after, Laura was offered a job as a broadcast journalist at STV News. She first worked in their Aberdeen office, before moving down to her hometown of Edinburgh to cover the central belt. Nothing has been more challenging but rewarding for her as reporting during the pandemic, and she is looking forward to grasping every opportunity available with the John Schofield Trust.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Jonathan Rugman
Laura is a bit of a news hobbyist and an output producer for ITV News, predominantly working on News at Ten and Evening News. She previously worked for ITV Wales and local news before that. During that time, she did everything from reporting and presenting to programme editing and gallery directing. Originally from the depths of the West Country, Laura now lives in London.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Stuart Hughes
Tyler is a digital producer. He started out in journalism through the BBC Digital Journalism Apprenticeship in 2017. During his two years on the apprenticeship, Tyler was based at BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat, where he learnt vital skills while working across radio and online. He also had the opportunity to film, direct and edit a Newsbeat documentary, ‘My Tumour Made Me Trendy’. He counts this as one of his biggest achievements. Since then he has progressed on to many different departments, freelancing at BBC Victoria Derbyshire, BBC Sport, BBC Click, BBC Young Reporter and Channel 5 News. He currently freelances at Channel 4 as a multimedia producer.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Fergus Bell
Gianluca is an experienced multimedia producer equipped with a solid journalism background and vast technical experience of the digital video world. As part of his current role as news producer at ITN, he played a key part in creating and implementing a new digital strategy, and was tasked with delivering a new remote workflow during the pandemic. A keen innovator and a techie, he also co-founded a digital start-up, MetaData, which is helping businesses in Italy recover from lockdown.
Before joining ITN, Gianluca worked as a freelance video journalist for The Independent, and as a video producer for The Telegraph.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Sean Stephens
Shayma is a freelance investigative journalist and assistant radio producer. She has written pieces for Al Jazeera, the Guardian, Independent, VICE, Metro and many more. She specialises in reporting on race, religion and persecuted communities such as the Uighurs, Rohingya and Yazidi groups. Shayma juggles multiple jobs on top of her freelance work: assistant-producing at LBC radio; reporting for the Sun as part of a diversity scheme; and commissioning and editing pieces for AZEEMA.
She is now moving towards visual media, working on creating documentaries and television news packages out of her original investigations.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Jane Bradley
Matthew is a 25-year-old freelance journalist from St Albans. He has worked closely with The Times on a number of stories, including an investigation into prison extremism, which prompted a national inquiry into the way extremists are managed in prisons; and a look into ‘county lines’ drug gangs. The latter of the two saw Matthew locate and interview the head of an international drug-trafficking organisation with links throughout Europe and Africa. He also speaks Arabic and is a student of Middle Eastern theology.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Mark Daly
For the last three years, Kris has worked for the user-generated content team, which is part of the national news-gathering operation within BBC News. He specialises in finding very specific case studies for output using advanced social media search techniques. Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, he has been a member of the ‘Covid victims unit’, sensitively carrying out ‘digital death knocks’ by phone and social media to identify strong stories for output. For the 2020 US election, Kris joined the anti-disinformation unit, where he mainly helped to debunk claims made by the Trump campaign about Joe Biden and voter fraud.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Cait Fitzsimons
Kesewaa is a multimedia digital and TV journalist who joined BBC News in 2018. She has a keen interest in health, providing a platform for under-represented stories, and reaching younger audiences. Kesewaa has covered stories that focus on royal weddings, social issues, and genetic diseases. She started her career on the BBC journalism trainee scheme and has since gone on to report on TV for BBC Look East and for regional radio outlets. Currently, Kesewaa is producing stories and co-presenting explainers for the BBC’s family and education team.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Oruj Defoite
Alyshea is a freelance digital journalist. She graduated from the BBC’s digital journalism apprenticeship in 2019, after working for BBC Radio Leicester for two years. Whilst studying for a Level 3 NCTJ diploma, her work included reporting for the station and co-presenting the flagship weekly Asian programme Bollywood Tamasha. Alyshea is now based in Manchester after working for BBC Children’s social media output. She was hired by 5 News as a digital producer following her TikTok about looking for a job in the creative industry. Her career path was later featured in a VICE News article.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Nina Dos Santos
Sabah is a news reporter and multimedia journalist at Sky News. While working across Sky’s TV output, Sabah was a producer for breakfast television and helped launch Kay Burley @ Breakfast. Working for Sky News Radio and IRN, Sabah produced reports for over 300 commercial stations and delivered radio and showbiz bulletins. Sabah also produced the Daily Podcast with Dermot Murnaghan, and was the lead producer, editor and director on Sky News’ In This Together podcast, featuring guests including Lord Sugar, Brian May, and Fatboy Slim, among others. She previously worked as a TV presenter and radio DJ.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Tessa Chapman
Naomi is the community reporter for Coventry Live and The Coventry Telegraph, working a patch spanning Coventry and Warwickshire. She was part of the first cohort of Facebook community reporters, a groundbreaking partnership scheme between Facebook and local publishers that aims to strengthen coverage of underserved communities. Due to complete her NCTJ diploma by 2021, Naomi works across the brand’s print, digital and social platforms, and has had stories go national in the Daily Mirror.
She graduated in 2016 with a History degree from the University of Leeds, and trained in documentary making in 2018 with the Grierson Trust’s DocLab.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Kathryn Stanczyszyn
Kayleen is a journalist and film-maker who has made films for Digital Current Affairs, BBC Newsnight, BBC 100 Women and BBC Earth. Her films have had over 27 million views on social media. Kayleen has also produced and presented radio packages and documentaries for Radio 4 and the World Service. She is interested in long-form storytelling, data journalism, and stories relating to gender and science.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Andrew Dagnell
Charlie is a digital journalist who began reporting at The Santiago Times in Chile. She has interned at BBC Radio 4, the Guardian and Sky News, and completed her NCTJ diploma after working in third sector communications.
She was a finalist for both the BBC production and BBC journalism trainee schemes, and went on to work for Yahoo News UK, LBC Radio, The i paper, London Evening Standard, Metro.co.uk, and Radio Jackie. She loves covering human interest stories, and hopes to develop her expertise in audio production and broadcasting.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Neil Dunwoodie
Osob is a broadcast journalist in News and Current Affairs at the BBC, working in regional and international news. She is the first hijab-wearing black woman to report on BBC Points West. She is also an alumna of the BBC’s journalism trainee scheme.
Osob has produced a diverse range of work for TV, radio and online with stories ranging from knife crime to child poverty, mental health in the Somali community and the Black Lives Matter movement and modest fashion, as well as significant coverage of the coronavirus pandemic.
Before joining the BBC, Osob completed a degree in journalism at the University of Gloucestershire.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Mike Deri Smith
Rachel is a journalist and multimedia producer for Channel 4 News. She produces and manages the award-winning Ways to Change the World podcast with Krishnan Guru-Murthy, interviewing some of the biggest names in politics and the arts. Previously she produced the Politics: Where Next? podcast with Channel 4 News’ political editor, Gary Gibbon. She has worked on Channel 4 News’ online team for nearly two years -producing, filming and editing daily, original news content in a fast-pace environment. Currently, she is working on a new Channel 4 News podcast, The Fourcast, working alongside reporters to give a deeper perspective on the latest news events.
Rachel is originally from South Wales and worked briefly at BBC Radio Wales before making the transition to a national newsroom.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Cristina Nicolotti-Squires
Azana is a 29-year-old Afro-Caribbean broadcast journalist working at the BBC. She joined the BBC as a political journalist in 2018 and has spent most of her career thus far focusing on political stories that impact women, young people and diverse communities within the UK. In her two years at the BBC, she has worked as a reporter and producer on regional radio and flagship programmes such as BBC’s Newsnight, Victoria Derbyshire, Politics Live and outlets like BBC Newsbeat and BBC London.
Azana has become known for her digital explainers and stories focusing on diverse audiences.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Mike Kumar
Laura is a shooting/editing producer freelancing with BBC and RTÉ. She has pitched, shot, produced and AP’d films with BBC’s The Travel Show, and BBC Earth Digital, among others. Prior to this, she worked as a desk producer and on digital content for BBC Newsnight. Laura is an alumna of the BBC production trainee scheme, an RTS Student Award national winner.
Originally from Sligo, Ireland, she now lives in London.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Tom Trewinnard
Ed is a journalist and multimedia producer for Channel 4 News. He works on the Digital Shorts team, producing short form videos for Dispatches, Unreported World and Channel 4 documentaries, as well as online explainers for Channel 4 News. Prior to this, he was the deputy digital editor at the Royal Television Society. He also works with the RTS Futures and The Media Society committees, producing events for them on conspiracy theories, media regulation, investigative journalism and other topics.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Gabriel Gatehouse
Hannah is based in Leeds and currently works as a journalist and TV reporter on BBC Look North. Her role involves working on a variety of news stories right across Yorkshire. She has previously worked in news broadcasting for the BBC, ITN and ITV. At the BBC, she moved around multiple departments, from BBC Breakfast to BBC World and BBC London. Before that, Hannah worked for the Walt Disney Company in performing arts. She has previously worked in Tokyo, the US, the Caribbean, South East Asia and all over Europe.
She holds an MA in Broadcast Journalism from City University London and a BA in International Development from the University of Sussex.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Jess Omari
Tommy is a journalist with experience both as a staff reporter in the regional press and as a freelance writer elsewhere. He has lived and worked in Spain, the UK and Ireland. His areas of focus include politics, healthcare, environmental issues and culture. Some of his reporting has looked at ‘movement parties’ across Europe, transparency in governance and health inequalities.He has also formed part of groundbreaking campaigns, including a legal effort to force the government to publish Exercise Cygnus.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Joe Miller
Laura is a freelance broadcast journalist and producer for BBC Radio4 news programmes. She has been developing her TV production skills while working on international coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic. She also has a keen interest in multimedia storytelling. Laura started her career at BBC Radio 4 and is a former producer with NBC News. She graduated with an MA in Broadcast Journalism from City University, producing a short documentary that won a BJTC award and was shortlisted for an Amnesty Media Award.
Originally from northern Scotland, Laura now lives in London. She also speaks French.
John Schofield Trust mentor: James Scurry
Emily is a reporter and bulletin reader for Global radio stations, previously in the North West and now in the East. She reported live from the Manchester Black Lives Matter protests and the third anniversary of the Manchester Arena attack, commemorated virtually during lockdown. Emily was nominated for ‘Best Newcomer’ at the Independent Radio News Awards 2020 for her work, which included an exclusive investigation into knives sold on Instagram disguised as lipsticks and hairbrushes. Previously a producer and production assistant for BBC Breakfast, where she was the youngest in the newsroom. She did this while studying for her degree in History and Politics at the University of Manchester.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Lara Lewington
Martha has been the sport correspondent for Sky News since 2018, specialising in sports news and investigations. She won the RTS Young Talent award in 2020 and prior to that was Chief Sport Reporter at the Guardian, named Sport Journalist of the Year at the Society of Editors awards in 2018.
Martha was the first journalist outside Russia to reveal the country’s widespread doping programme in 2013 and has investigated duty of care scandals across Olympic and Paralympic sport including cycling, canoeing and gymnastics. Since arriving at Sky, Martha has reported from Argentina on the tragic death of Emiliano Sala, from Greece on the arrest and trial of Harry Maguire and covered the growing concerns about neurodegenerative conditions in athletes.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Martin Geissler
Ashni is a digital journalist and producer for BBC News.
She specialises in pitching, producing, filming and editing hard-hitting investigative digital films for younger and diverse audiences.
Her experiences working at Panorama and File on 4 informed her own investigative documentaries which include stories exposing illegal skin-whitening products; acid attacks and uncovering tax fraud in Leicester’s garment industry.
Ashni entered broadcast journalism through a Creative Access internship and after four years in the industry was selected as a MHPC #30towatch Young Journalist Winner for her investigations.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Nicola Keaney
Craig is a multi-media journalist at BBC News, where he makes digital documentaries, podcasts and radio programmes
Craig’s films have explored various topics; from the story of Europe’s largest Rohingya community in Bradford to the impact of COVID-19 on mental health support for homeless Londoners. His documentary, ‘The Hands that Convicted a Paedophile’, was the one of the ‘most watched’ on BBC iPlayer in 2018 – and received 2.5 million views on YouTube.
He recently presented a BBC World Service podcast exploring solutions to racial bias in artificial intelligence. Craig’s interests include solutions, technology and human rights.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Adam Waters
Jared is a presenter, reporter and producer for BBC Wales Today, the flagship news programme in Wales. He joined the BBC through the prestigious journalism trainee scheme, which he completed in 2019. He was nominated for a Royal Television Society Student Award for his dissertation project which he completed whilst on an MA in Broadcast Journalism at the University of Sheffield.
Jared has a keen interest in both UK and American politics, entertainment news, and stories from the LGBT+ community. Before beginning his career in journalism Jared was an actor graduating from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Carl Dinnen
Hedi is a local news reporter working for the Swindon Advertiser. He began his career as an apprentice at the Adver completing his NCTJ diploma while in the newsroom. Hedi has worked on stories about mental health, refugees, discrimination, and racial hate crimes in Swindon. He holds an MA in International Journalism from Cardiff University and is a multilingual journalist originally from Paris, France.
Hedi has been shortlisted for the NCTJ’s Apprentice of the Year Award 2020 and was named as one of the ‘80 regional journalists who sum up why local journalism matters’ in the Public Interest News List.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Sarah Beale
Gráinne is a reporter and producer currently based at the BBC in Northern Ireland. She’s spent much of the past two years reporting on Brexit and the border.
Previously she worked as a reporter for Hardcash Productions in London. In 2017, she spent three months working undercover at a psychiatric hospital run by the Priory. The investigation led to a unique and distressing insight into mental healthcare for some of the most vulnerable young people in England.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Rhodri Jones
Caroline is a freelance broadcast and digital journalist primarily based in London who works mainly for Sky News, Euronews and the Sunday Times. She previously worked for Good Morning Britain and The Independent and specialises in news, politics and foreign affairs.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Matt Brindley
Tim is a freelance journalist who has spent most of the last year working for ITV Granada Reports, in the North West of England. He has mainly worked on ITV News’ digital coverage and has covered the trial of the Hillsborough match commander, election night in the North West and the sentencing of Reynhard Sinaga. Tim was also solely responsible for ITV’s digital coverage of the Manchester Arena Inquiry’s ‘pen portraits’. He created bespoke content for each of the 22 victims, making sure that the tributes from their loved ones were at the forefront of the coverage.
Tim has also occasionally worked as a reporter for ITV News, conducting interviews and producing TV packages. He is interested in stories surrounding mental health, education, politics and science – having studied for a degree in chemistry before becoming a journalist. He has ambitions of becoming a foreign correspondent.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Anna Foster
Kirstie is an assistant producer at the BBC, writing features and creating video content for BBC Bitesize. She has also gained experience working across radio and TV, including Gaydio and BBC Breakfast. Her career began in student media, as the editor of her student paper and head of the student TV and radio stations, and she remains an ardent advocate of student journalism to this day. She is passionate about journalism designed and created for a young audience and hopes to do more of this in the future.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Simon Vigar
Meghan is a producer and reporter at BBC News. She worked on the Victoria Derbyshire Programme during the election, where she also helped produce the BAFTA-nominated ‘Men who lost loved ones to knife crime’, and several exclusive stories on eating disorders and mental health. At BBC London, she has reported on prison reform, mental health and investigated county lines activity in London. Meghan has also worked at BBC World and the BBC News Channel, working on rolling news coverage during major events such as the US election. Before entering the newsroom, Meghan spent a year in Montreal where she taught in a French school and wrote for a travel company. She is keen to pursue her interest in international news.
John Schofield Trust mentor: David Bowden
Nabihah is a digital journalist, presenting and producing content for the BBC Minute Instagram page. She has an interest in global issues that affect young and underrepresented communities. Nabihah has covered stories specifically for social platforms on the Yemen crisis, factory workers in Bangladesh, and the Black Lives Matter movement.
She previously worked as a regional TV reporter for BBC Look East, winning an RTS award for her dedication to diverse storytelling.
Nabihah is also a major foodie due to my international upbringing and background.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Roohi Hasan
Kate is a gold-standard NCTJ trained journalist working for SWNS Media Group. She has two and a half years of journalism behind her with the Southwest Londoner, where she trained, and Leys News Oxford where she began her reporting career.
Kate also has broadcast experience with BBC Radio Oxford, multimedia journalism training, and has published video and digital content.
Before journalism Kate worked in advocacy roles and for charities supporting homeless people, and she has a degree in human sciences. She is ambitious to explore all aspects of journalism and continue to produce robust informative work.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Sean Dilley
Journalism puts Craig in a privileged position to tell people’s stories and it has taken him on some great adventures – from meeting the man with the world’s fastest shed to covering the Blind Football Championships.
Craig is a production journalist at ITV News Central, creating informative bulletins, viral online content and reporting original stories to viewers across the Midlands.
He has an interest in sport and his previous role was at West Bromwich Albion’s official charity, The Albion Foundation, as its Media Officer. Craig is passionate about radio and previously worked for various community stations for eight years.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Tom Pollard
Emma is the news editor and feature writer for the online magazine Disability Horizons. She writes regular news stories on disability-related topics such as travel, technology and entertainment. She has also done interviews with many famous people including Ade Adepitan, Alex Brooker and Sophie Morgan.
Emma also creates blogs and video content for the organisation AccessAble, promoting their access guides and campaigning for accessibility.
Additionally, Emma runs her own blog, Rock For Disability, which consists of personal stories and advice pieces to do with disability and music content that includes interviews with bands and artists and live music reviews.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Bernadette Kitterick
Frances is a journalist and video producer. She started her career with reporting shifts at the i newspaper. After graduating Frances produced videos for Newsweek where she developed her filming and editing, and worked on a range of stories about US politics, climate change, social justice and gender. Frances has recently produced investigative work for DeSmog on issues surrounding climate change and disinformation. She has a special interest in reporting on climate, young people and women and wants to produce documentaries in the future.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Tom Clarke
Inzamam is the North of England correspondent for Sky News, covering a range of national, international affairs stories and breaking news.
His reporting has included how the COVID-19 pandemic has had a disproportionate impact on BAME people, the importance of the British Asian vote in the 2019 General Election and a documentary looking at how young people will be affected in the future because of the pandemic.
In 2019, Inzamam won the Outstanding Young Journalist award at the Asian Media Awards.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Romilly Weeks
Immie currently work as a journalist on the dying homeless project which collects data and most importantly stories of those that have died rough sleeping this year.
She has previously freelanced as an assistant producer in the Radio 4 newsroom and also as a researcher for BBC Radio Current Affairs, working on podcasts.
Earlier this year Immie broadcast her first FOI-led investigation into buildings converted under permitted development rights being used by local authorities and temporary accommodation for the Radio documentary ‘My name is..’
Immie is most interested in stories about class, housing & inequality
John Schofield Trust mentor: Chris Howard
Shaheen is a freelance producer at Channel 4 News at ITN. Before this, Shaheen was on a graduate scheme at a finance and business news channel called CNBC. And before that, at ITV News and The Bureau of Investigative Journalism. Having lived in South London all her life, Shaheen’s claim to fame is that she lives up the road from Sadiq Khan, and that Tooting High Street has the best curry in the UK. She obsesses about Middle Eastern monarchies and runs regularly.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Ed Chivers
Tamsin is a senior journalist at the BBC. She was on the BBC’s journalism trainee scheme in 2018 and has worked from journalism researcher to leading a digital team in that time. Tamsin is now BBC Scotland’s The Nine’s (a nightly TV news programme) senior digital lead. She is originally from Plymouth, and studied philosophy at the University of Glasgow – Tamsin herself on the fact you don’t need a journalism degree to be a good storyteller!
John Schofield Trust mentor: Nick Pollard
Gareth’s route into journalism was unconventional, magician turned producer, he swapped top hats for top lines in 2017 after self-shooting an award-winning documentary investigating claims made by psychics.
His debut film ‘A Medium at Large’ won an award at Sheffield Doc/Fest with judges commenting: ‘A wonderful example of brave investigatory documentary making. Eye-opening, bold and confident’.
Specialising in visually engaging storytelling, Gareth has worked for BBC News and Barcroft Studios. His diverse portfolio of original multi-platform content has amassed over 110,000,000 views online.
Gareth is a producer at ITN and is passionate about social affairs, politics and investigative documentaries.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Roopa Suchak
Born in Old Trafford, Ajai has had an immense interest in news and current affairs from a very young age. Instead of taking the traditional route to journalism by going to university, Ajai went to work in inner city schools in Manchester as a teaching assistant as well as writing widely about education, advice articles and opinion articles. He has founded coverage in the North West for The Business Influencer Magazine in which he has written about the history of the North West; how lockdown has affected Greater Manchester; and the impact COVID 19 has had on apprenticeships- an issue which has had a deafening silence in the national media.
Ajai has keen interests in education, investigations and in-depth stories. He is excited about moulding his career in journalism.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Richard Vadon
Amie is an Assistant News Editor at ITV National News. After three successful years of freelancing across ITN and at ITV daytime – it was time to make some roots at the place that feels like home.
She has a passion for seeking out people who are often hard to find, providing a space for them to tell their stories and bring it to the screen. Amie spent time training in the US as a producer and reporter. In the future, she would love to become a full-time producer and spend more time on the road – where the magic happens.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Stewart Maclean
Neelam is social producer at The Guardian with a focus on social policy, race, AI, mental health, documentaries, youth culture, and porn. She is a former columnist at gal-dem and co-host of BBC Three documentary Porn Laid Bare.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Claire Williams
Finbarr is a London-based freelance journalist. He has written for NBC News, BBC, Reuters, The European, VICE, Prospect, The Telegraph and has worked on special reports in The Times and Sunday Times.
He has reported from Berlin’s first LGBTQ refugee centre; spent the night with the ‘Soho Angels’ keeping London’s nightlife scene safe; explored Prague’s Paralelní Polis, the creation of the infamous Ztohoven artist-activist group; profiled former BP CEO, Lord John Browne, and covered the rise of sustainable fashion at Milan Men’s Fashion Week. He recently completed his MPhil at Cambridge University.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Alex Crawford
Lucy is a journalist at BBC Politics, where she writes for the website. She previously worked at Newsnight where she made digital video for social media and booked political guests for the show. Before joining the BBC she was a freelance journalist, writing for publications including the Guardian and BuzzFeed on topics such as student politics, feminism and disability rights. Much of her work aims to make politics relevant and accessible to new audiences, and to tell the stories of underrepresented communities.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Mark Wray
Aisha is a trainee journalist at Sky News and is completing her NCTJ whilst working in the newsroom. Since entering the newsroom in 2020, she has been involved in a project called ‘Lockdown Road’, which saw residents on a road in Leeds create regular video diaries, documenting their time during the first coronavirus lockdown. Aisha has also worked with the mobile team, writing news stories for the website and app as well as breaking news and live blogging for events such as the US presidential debates and election night. She has also worked with the digital news desk to source content from social media.
John Schofield Trust mentor: Alpa Patel