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MECO students secure coveted Fairfax internships



13 June 2013

Fairfax interns
The successful Fairfax interns (from left): Thomas O'Brien, Lidia Nikonova, Lydia Feng and Lucy Hughes Jones. Absent: Fabian Di Lizia.

In a testament to the strength of the faculty's Media and Communications program, an unprecedented number of MECO students have been selected in the latest round of competitive Fairfax internships.

Five talented final year Media and Communications students have been chosen out of a total of nine interns from universities across NSW for the placements, which begin this week at Fairfax publications including The Sydney Morning Herald and The Sun Herald.

Over their five-week placement, the interns will hone their journalistic abilities, writing for various sections of the company. Thomas O'Brien takes up a spot in The Sydney Morning Herald's newsroom, with Fabian Di Lizia joining The Sun Herald.

Both Lucy Hughes Jones and Lydia Feng will intern in the features section of The Sydney Morning Herald, while Lidia Nikonova is set to undertake a photojournalism placement at the newspaper.

The highly coveted internships were won after a rigorous selection process, which included a 90-minute current affairs test, a newswriting exam and a panel interview.

"We are delighted at our students' success in gaining these internships in a prized program," said Departmental chair, Professor Gerard Goggin. "Fairfax remains a leader in Australian media, especially how we all respond to the digital environment - and our students are especially well-equipped to tackle this challenge."

For Lucy Hughes Jones, the internship represents the chance to gain unique insight into the workings of the newsroom, learning from established reporters ahead of finishing her studies at the end of the year.

"This is an opportunity to work with some of the best in the industry, so I'm looking forward to building up my portfolio of published pieces, meeting some inspiring people and writing stories I can be proud of," she said.

Hughes Jones adds the Fairfax internship to her already impressive resume, having already completed a placement at Chile's Santiago Times in January this year as one of the Department's inaugural Council of Australia Latin America Relations (COALAR) Fellows.

Fabian Di Lizia, who is studying a combined Media and Law degree, said he is thrilled by the prospect of writing for "the flagship masthead in the Sydney Basin."

"I am looking forward to working with the best journalists at one of the best newspapers in the country," he said. "I am most excited about seeing how the news is made, especially following all the theory we hear about it."

The University of Sydney has a long-standing record of placing interns at Fairfax, with a number of MECO alumni going on to work for the company upon graduation.

A compulsory internship unit is built into the Bachelor of Arts (Media and Communications) degree, with students completing a 20-day placement at media outlets such as the ABC, Fairfax, SBS, and public relations agencies.

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