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UL student scoops Live 95 radio journalism award

Federica Montella
Wed, 31 Jul 2019

A fourth year student of Journalism and New Media at University of Limerick has won the Live 95 University of Limerick Radio Journalism award. 

Federica Montella, a native of Naples in Italy, won the competition for her news report on Limerick’s eco-friendly business. The report focused on business that are making an effort to be more sustainable and green friendly.

Limerick has recently been awarded the title of European Green Leaf 2020, alongside the Belgian city of Mechelen.

Speaking of her award success, Federica said: “I am delighted I won the Live 95 radio package competition with my package on ecofriendly businesses in Limerick city. My package is a feature rather than a hard news piece, but I still think it’s very relevant and newsworthy. Sustainability and zero-waste living are hot topics these days and there’ll never be enough information out there.

“I’m glad Limerick city won the 2020 European Green Leaf title, and I’m happy to see that so much is being done to help the environment. I chose to make a radio package to better convey the passion of the people involved and to let them tell their stories in the most natural and unfiltered way possible,” she added.

Henry Silke, head of Journalism at UL, congratulated Federica on her achievement. 

“Federica's excellent report underlines the role of journalism to inform the public of environmental issues,” he said, adding that Live 95's engagement is a great initiative that “gives encouragement to young journalists”.

Head of News and Sport at Live 95, Gillian Devlin, said the award was an opportunity for Live 95 to identify new talent in radio broadcast journalism.

“Live 95 continues to support the journalism students at University of Limerick with the sponsorship of the annual Radio Prize and as we see it as a valuable way to encourage and develop young talent,” she explained. “It is just one way in which we work closely with the UL School of Journalism in a spirit of co-operation and we look forward to continuing that support.

“Federica Montella's package on highlighting Limerick's eco-friendly businesses displayed skilled radio techniques in terms of interview style, atmospheric locations and editing. It flowed well and kept the listener engaged on a topic that is becoming  increasingly more relevant to Limerick audiences." 

There was a wide range of entries this year from first- and final-year journalism students at UL. The news reports dealt with a number of issues including the stigma of suicide with an insightful report from Pieta House in Kerry, to a wide ranging report on sex education in schools in Limerick, to the topic of insurance premiums for young drivers.

According to judges, entries were of a high news value and were creatively produced.

Lecturer in journalism at University of Limerick, Audrey Galvin, said: “Federica's report is an excellent example of the core broadcast and digital values and skills which underpin journalism here at University of Limerick. Competitions such as this serve to engage the students with the demands of working in radio and are a product of our convergent approach to journalism. We are excited to continue to build upon our relationship with the station.”

As the first prize recipient, Federica received €500 from Live 95 and will have her package broadcast on the station.