Tutor returns to reporting with trepidation

JAMES MACLEOD
Last updated 05:00 09/06/2014

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Head of the Witt journalism school Robin Martin is off to "walk the talk".

After seven and a half years of commitment to the course and the students as a tutor, Martin is returning to full-time reporting.

Taranaki Daily News reporter and award winning 2013 journalism graduate Deena Coster said it was Martin's professional experience that made him an effective tutor.

"That he was a reporter and sub-editor meant that he was able to make the theory of journalism come to life," she said.

Martin is also known for the changes he has made to the course, including the shift from Witt's Bell St campus to the Daily News building in the CBD.

"The Daily News has more spaces for the students than campus has and it is right next to a live news room so there is a fantastic connection there," Martin said.

Former Daily News editor Lance Girling-Butcher said the Witt journalism course was one of the only courses in New Zealand to have a strong relationship with its local newspaper. "The Daily News has accepted the students into its building and it's just a wonderful relationship to have."

Martin will now be working for Radio NZ as the regional reporter for Taranaki, starting with a two-week induction in Wellington today.

"It's a little terrifying going back into reporting," he said. "When you've worked as a tutor, you sometimes wonder if you can perform the same thing you're expecting your students to."

Martin will be leaving the course in the hands of tutors Jayne Hulbert and Virginia Winder. Winder attended high school with Martin 35 years ago and has taught on the Witt journalism course off and on since 1999. "We have big shoes to fill," she said.

James MacLeod is a Witt journalism student.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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