Peter Coulter – Mentee

Peter Coulter

Peter CoulterI’m a Broadcast Journalist for the BBC in Northern Ireland working across BBC Newsline, BBC Radio Ulster and BBC NI News Online.

I joined the BBC in 2011 as part of the Journalism Trainee Scheme and had placements at Radio Merseyside and North West Tonight. Since beginning the job I’ve been able to report on major stories including the England riots and the Duchess of Cambridge topless pictures as well lighter stories including a Manchester drag queen who was mistaken for Margaret Thatcher which was a huge hit online.

I applied to be part of the John Schofield Trust mentoring scheme when my training came to end and I was about the enter the real journalism world. I felt I needed some guidance and someone to ask questions of as I was moving location and about to set up in a new newsroom.

It was great to be paired with BBC World News journalist David Eades. He is experienced as a journalist and newsreader and has worked in Northern Ireland so he had a good idea of the environment I was now working in. He was supportive when I got my new job and in practical terms he has been very helpful.

David listens to my radio packages and gives me feedback on scripting and different ways of looking at things. He has also looked at my TV packages and has given feedback on my pieces to camera, choice of pictures and script links.

I have also struggled with how I use my voice in reports and David has given me lots of useful tips. It’s reassuring to know that I can contact him at anytime and that he can advise me on anything I need help with.

It’s also great having a network of the other young journalists on the mentoring programme, they provide invaluable links and contacts within the media industry. I would recommend any young journalist to consider applying.