The Regional Reporting Project, organised by UTS (University of Technology Sydney) Central News, has given student journalists an opportunity to learn about the function of a regional newsroom, explore their assigned regions and learn about the stories and lives of its residents.
Late last month a team of five students, Melanie Wong, Alex Turner-Cohen, Mark Kriedeman, Emily Kowal and Soofia Tariq, travelled from Sydney to Forster-Tuncurry via Taree for a handful of days of on-the-job learning experience.
They were armed with four cameras, sunscreen and loads of enthusiasm and adrenaline.
"I've encountered an entirely different atmosphere from what I'm used to and it's been very stimulating," second year journalism student and resident photographer, Mark said.
"The colour palette of Tuncurry is sublime," he said.
The students wrote stories about the changing climate in relation to the Mid North Coast and they interviewed oyster farmers, boat tour operators and local families.
"It's made me fall in love with regional reporting," third year journalism student, Emily, who also has with a knack for asking the right question, said.
They spent four days filming, interviewing and driving from Taree to Forster to Old Bar and back.
Fellow third year student, Alex also enjoyed the trip.
"This whole trip has been an adrenaline rush."
As a group of city kids, it was almost embarrassingly stereotypical that they would interrupt an interview to take photos of dolphins.
"Everyone has been really nice and it's a lovely area," Soofia said.
"I had an awesome time discovering stories here."
The entire trip has been one interview after another but none of the students would have it any other way.
So much has been learnt about the people who live here and work here and the team at the Great Lakes Advocate, who live and breathe the stories in this region, have given incredible tips to these student journalists.
Written by Melanie Wong, a third year journalism student, on behalf of the Mid North Coast team.
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