Journalism students were given an insight into the industry – and the corridors of power – when Clive Lewis MP visited the University of Northampton.
The MP for Norwich South started his career doing work experience at the Chronicle & Echo newspaper, in his hometown of Northampton, in the 1990s, before moving into broadcast to BBC Look East. He later joined the army and served in Afghanistan.
He was appointed to Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s shadow cabinet in 2015 as Shadow Secretary of State for Defence, becoming Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in the October 2016 reshuffle.
Mr Lewis’s visit, which took place on Wednesday, was arranged by Senior Lecturer in Journalism, Hilary Scott, who was his mentor during his work experience stint at the Chronicle & Echo.
His advice for students seeking a successful career in journalism was having “a balance between being confident in your abilities and being critical” and being able to “develop a rapport between yourself and the people you talk to”.
Mr Lewis also told the audience all EU citizens living in the United Kingdom should be granted British citizenship, in the wake of Brexit, before giving an impassioned argument in favour of multilateral nuclear disarmament.
Hilary said: “Clive is a passionate politician, and I think his background as a journalist has helped him connect with voters in a way that is far more accessible to young people. The students liked his honesty and his lack of waffle – and this is how we want them to be when they go out into their own careers.”
You can watch a video of Mr Lewis’s talk on YouTube, where he discusses his transition from the media to politics.