If there are only 40 journalist vacancies, where are all the journalism students going to work?

I had one of my occasional scrolls through our jobs board earlier today.

On the one hand, it was a delight, as for the first time we had more than 350 roles (free certainly does seem to be a popular price point).

But then an orphan leaped out. Our journalism category had just two jobs.  

And it got worse when I realised that was a duplicate posting. So just one journalism job.

Now my first thought was that perhaps there are more journalism jobs elsewhere, and employers haven’t noticed Mumbrella for editorial roles just yet.

But it’s not so good for journalists elsewhere either. I took a quick look at Australia’s five biggest job sites:

And of those jobs above, several are posted across a couple of sites. I’d say there are at best 30-40 journalism jobs that I can find advertised at the moment.

Which must be enormously daunting if you’re studying journalism as a university course, or are a journalist currently worrying for your job.

Certainly, it shows just how bad things are for journalists at a point when other parts of the media and marketing landscape are starting to boom again.

Of course, one caveat is that journalism is a profession that doesn’t advertise all of its vacancies. Word of mouth and luck plays a big part. My break came when I wrote to all of the local papers in my area on spec and my letter landed on the right desk on the right day.

And as another example, we created a role to hire a new member of the Mumbrella team after she approached us to work as an intern and impressed us over several months.

But nonetheless, across Australia, hundreds of journalism students are months away from graduating. I suspect that very few of them will ever work as journalists.

Tim Burrowes


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