National Union of Journalists
Third year journalism student, Eve, explains what the NUJ is and why it's useful for students to become a member.
One of the biggest worries for up-and-coming journalists is the changing nature of the job - gone are the days of finding one newspaper and working there as a specialised reporter for the rest of your career. Journalism is changing: many journalists are going freelance and writing for many publications and platforms on a range of different topics. We are now blogging, vlogging, Tweeting, recording, videoing and live-streaming our news in an instant. And as we step away from traditional news outlets, press unions and associations are becoming more and more important to fight for good pay and working conditions for journalists, many of whom now work independently from news organisations.
There are many unions for those working within the Journalism profession. The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) is just one of them. It which was founded in 1907 and is now one of the biggest journalists’ unions in the world, with over 38,000 members. It works to improve pay and conditions for journalists and protect and promote media freedom. It’s the union of choice for many workers in journalism, books and PR and communications.
Student membership at the NUJ is £30 and is available to journalism students and those who work in student media. It includes a NUJ Student press card, membership at a local branch and access to advice and services to help your in your future career.
A Student Press Card that can come in very useful as you start to organise interviews and speak to members of the public. Press cards can help the public to trust and be more open with you, as well as helping you to get access to important newsworthy events.
Speaking from first-hand experience, press cards are a good idea for student journalists, so a deciding which one is for you might be a good first step into the journalism profession. Just make sure you keep your card it with you at all times as you never know when it might come in useful!