QUAYS News turned five on Friday and to celebrate we have been looking back at some of the people who have worked here, our Quays Graduates.
Since it’s creation, Quays has allowed students to flourish and improve their skills by providing an opportunity to gain experience in both television and online.
Our first Quays Graduate is Ross Lees-McCowan, who is now Technical Operator at STV.
He said: “Quays News provided me with a platform to help build and develop my TV Production skills. I was at Salford University for five years, during which time Quays News was set up.
“I was the first director for Quays (so if you watch the early shows, you’ll see I was still learning about shot sizes!) and was also given the chance to be the first Technical Intern.
“It became a passion project to continue building Quays up year after year.”
“It was probably the best experience of my time at the university. It helped me learn and develop TV production skills which went a long way when it came to finding a job in TV News.
“It’s fair to say I wouldn’t have got to where I am without Quays. The single best thing about Quays through the years though has been the people.
“Many of the people I worked alongside have worked hard and grafted to make Quays better, but they also made work very enjoyable. It’s also great to see how much the Quays News brand has grown since it started, especially because it’s voluntary and spearheaded by the students.
“I was lucky to be a part of the larger projects like 12 Hour Quays, the two Global News Relays and 15 Hour Quays – all of which were massively rewarding experiences.
“And now you see the students pushing themselves to work on new and complex programming like the Science Special and Quays Sessions.”
Ellie-Caitlin Doward, the second of our Quays Graduates, is now working as a researcher at BBC Radio 5 Live.
She said: “Quays was great preparation for working in the real media world – it taught me a lot about the importance of team work, and keeping a cool head when things went wrong.
“Quays definitely made me more resilient, which has helped me when I need to get guests for breaking news on air as soon as I can while working at 5 live.”
Jamie Glover, now a production specialist at ITV Granada, also started out with Quays.
He said: “Quays TV gave me my first taste of live television news and I was hooked immediately. The buzz in the gallery was contagious and every live show left us with a massive high.
“Coming from Student Radio I started off doing sound before progressing to camera, autocue, lighting and finally on to directing and vision-mixing.
“It gave me the opportunity to practise and hone my technical skills at least once a week – a luxury that just wouldn’t have been possible without having Quays as a platform in the University.
“One of the most enjoyable things about getting involved with Quays TV was that the overwhelming feeling among the editorial and technical crew was that everyone was there for the love of live television.
“It wasn’t something we had to do to fulfil a requirement of a module or for work experience, it was just full of like-minded people who were more than happy to give up their free time to make some telly and have a great time doing it.
“The biggest highlight of my time at Quays was being involved in the 15 hour Marathon broadcast. It was an unbelievable experience and quite a remarkable achievement of putting together a broadcast of that scale.
“Without my experience at Quays I can’t imagine getting my first couple of jobs in the industry and I definitely use the skills I learnt there every single day in my current role as a Production Specialist at ITV Granada.
“There’s already been many successful Quays graduates and I’m certain there are many more still to come.”
— Salford Now (@SalfordNow) November 24, 2016
The fourth of our Quays Graduates is Tom Percival, who is now Film Editor at UniLAD.
Tom remembers his time at Quays fondly. He said: “When I first volunteered for Quays TV many moons ago I was initially nervous, little did I know back then it was going to change my life forever.
“It helped me discover my real passion, film journalism, and it’s thanks to the the encouragement of everyone I met while working on the show that I managed to make that dream a reality. It was great fun and I made a number of wonderful friends whilst taking part that otherwise I would not have had the opportunity to do.”
“Even on the most stressful of days,16 Hour Broadcast springs to mind, everyone on the team managed to keep on smiling and showed a level of professionalism that you just wouldn’t expect from students. Quays will always be the favourite thing I did while at University.”
Siobhan Maguire, the fifth of our Quays Graduates, said: “I worked at Quays TV News throughout the three years of my degree.
“It was and is the best experience you can get if you want to work in video or TV production. I liked that we had guidance and feedback from lecturers after each show and you got to meet students from other courses in the process!”
— Bradley Harris (@MrBradleyHarris) November 24, 2016
Our final Quays Graduate is Adam Higgins, former online editor at Quays.
Adam now works as a freelance journalist at the Glossop Chronicle and Tameside Reporter, BBC Sport and Manchester United Football Club.
Adam said: “I learned how to manage a team of people and control the output of a relatively fast-paced website and its social media accounts, as well as subbing student’s work and perfecting my writing technique.”
“I enjoyed the ability to freely write about a variety of subjects and different types of journalism, including news stories, match reports, opinion pieces and features, as well as running the non-league Football LIVE blog every Saturday afternoon.
“The responsibility and decision-making involved as an editor in terms of how to schedule content, when to publish on social media and what should be the top stories on the website.
“The opportunities it presented to go out on stories and attend media events, such as at Lancashire County Cricket Club, as well as collaborate with fellow students, share ideas with them and help nurture their skills.”
Here’s to many more years of Quays News!