Journalist student wins Solent award for his commitment and passion despite the odds

Craig Tilley

A student from the University of Portsmouth has been recognised in a south coast awards scheme, created in memory of a former journalist and champion of journalists’ rights.

  • 08 July 2022
  • 3 min read

Craig Tilley (27) from Portsmouth received the Bob Norris Award for Achievement in journalism from the Solent Branch of the National Union of Journalists (NUJ).

The awards scheme is run in memory of their late colleague and former chairman, Bob Norris.

Craig, and two other students, one from each of the three main institutions providing journalism training in the Solent region – the University of Portsmouth, Solent University and City of Portsmouth College – were nominated by their respective lecturers for their exceptional efforts in sometimes difficult circumstances.

Each student received a trophy, a certificate and a cash award in recognition of their achievement.

Craig, who is about to graduate from the BA (Hons) Journalism course, said: “To have my hard work and my commitment to the journalism course recognised by my University with the Bob Norris Achievement Award feels amazing! The past couple of years have been a big test for my family and I, as serious health scares with my immediate family meant that I've had to juggle a lot in order to continue my studies and complete my degree and the NCTJ course.

“Dealing with this all the way through the pandemic and more recently has made my time at university quite challenging, but I would not have gotten to the end without the help and support of my lecturers and the University of Portsmouth.” 

I'm at the very beginning of my career, and I feel I've got so much more to accomplish but to achieve this award upon my graduation gives me a big boost of confidence that I can go on and hopefully do my job as a journalist well

Craig Tilley, Graduating Journalism Student

Claire Perry, Senior Lecturer in Journalism at the University of Portsmouth, said: “Craig has had a number of caring responsibilities during his time at the University of Portsmouth. He has also held down a regular job while meeting university deadlines. His attendance has been excellent and he's engaged in extra-curricular trips and visiting speaker sessions, as well as meeting the NCTJ as a student representative. As a mature student with a bit more experience and general knowledge, he has also been a positive influence on general classroom dynamics. Craig is a force for good and we were delighted to nominate him for this award.”

Craig added: “I'm at the very beginning of my career, and I feel I've got so much more to accomplish but to achieve this award upon my graduation gives me a big boost of confidence that I can go on and hopefully do my job as a journalist well.”