Middlesbrough College is celebrating the recruitment of a leading figure in UK regional journalism to its teaching team.
From September, Peter Barron – the longest-serving editor in the history of The Northern Echo and a board member of the National Council for the Training of Journalists – will deliver specialist units on the college’s new BTEC Level 3 Creative Media Production (Print Based) course.
Peter, who left his editing role this year to work with a range of local organisations and who still writes for the award-winning newspaper, said he was delighted to be playing a role in training the journalists of tomorrow.
“I was just a young lad from Southbank in Middlesbrough, but journalism took me to being editor of one of the biggest regional newspapers in the country and being given an MBE,” he said.
“It’s great to be working with my local college to help other young people access all the brilliant opportunities that the profession offers.”
During his time at the Echo, Peter led successful campaigns to convince Hitachi to open a factory in Newton Aycliffe and to cut hospital waiting times for heart bypass patients.
Peter – who is also a popular children’s author – will be delivering units on Factual Writing For Print, Writing Copy and Understanding Print Based Industries.
He said: “I like the practical edge that the courses at Middlesbrough College have.
“Their links with industry and the world of work are impressive, and really give students an excellent chance of making contacts that can help them into the careers they dream about.”
Middlesbrough College chief executive and principal Zoe Lewis said the college was excited about adding journalism to its wide roster of courses.
“Journalistic skills can be applied to many work roles, and we’re delighted to have such a leading figure from the industry to share his expertise with our students,” she said.
“We feel Peter will bring the kind of real-life experience and insider knowledge to the course that we treasure.”