Broadcast journalist made a Doctor of Arts.

Published (Updated )

ITV broadcast journalist Penny Marshall has been awarded an honorary degree by City University London.

She was made a Doctor of Arts in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the profession of journalism, at a ceremony on Wednesday 28th January.

Dr Marshall, who is Social Affairs Editor for ITV News, was presented with her degree by Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Curran, at the Barbican Centre in the City of London.

The award was conferred during a graduation ceremony for students from the University's Department of Journalism, where she is a Visiting Professor.

After receiving her degree, she said: "I must thank City University London for conferring on me such a high honour.

"I feel very privileged - firstly, to be recognised at all in a field where I am frequently astounded by the abilities of my contemporaries and the courage of my colleagues and secondly, to be associated with this University in particular."

Penny Marshall is one of the most experienced journalists on British television and is highly respected throughout the world's media, with more than 30 years in the industry.

" Be a team player, report what you see honestly and don't be afraid to defend the truth of what you find."

She was one of the key faces of ITV's news coverage during some of the most important events in recent history - from the collapse of the Soviet Union, to the Gulf War and Nelson Mandela's release from prison.

Her reports on Serb-run detention camps and ethnic cleansing in Bosnia, in 1992, remain among the most important television exclusives of the era. The work won her an EMMY, a BAFTA and a Royal Television Society award.

She is also known for being the first female television correspondent in Britain to have been permanently based overseas, which she achieved in 1989 when she moved to Moscow.

Since 2006, Dr Marshall has helped to support the next generation of reporters, educating students on City's Television and Broadcast Journalism Masters programmes.

During her speech, she offered advice and encouragement to the graduating students, telling them that at City they were "best placed in the world" to start a career in journalism.

"Be a team player, report what you see honestly and don't be afraid to defend the truth of what you find," she said.

"Remember that most often, the truth doesn't lie in the black and white that others tell you, but in the grey that you see.

"Remember, it looks easy, this job. But don't be deceived because it isn't. And it's a job whose real reward is the life experience and not in the money."

Dr Marshall also encouraged women to persevere in the industry - which a House of Lords committee concluded last week must act to solve its gender inequality - and revealed she was briefly referred to as "news girl Pen" early in her career.

"When the going gets tough, please don't quit," she said. "Change the rules and the stay the course."

Professor Lis Howell, Director of Broadcasting at City, said: "We are delighted to be awarding an honorary doctorate to Penny Marshall who is one of the longest serving and most illustrious women reporters in British television news. Not only that, she has been an inspiration to nearly a decade of students at City.

"Penny is high-profile but accessible, she is hugely popular with our postgrads and she is a credit to the journalism profession."

This year, City also conferred awards upon: Richard Gillingwater CBE; Dr Anthony Papadimitriou; and Brian John Barker CBE QC.

A video of the ceremony will be available to watch on the City website.