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Nicola Sitch is the 2020 AFTRS and Commercial Radio Australia Podcast Scholarship Recipient

AFTRS, the national screen and broadcast school, and Commercial Radio Australia (CRA), the industry body representing Australian commercial radio broadcasters, have announced that Melbourne student Nicola Sitch is the recipient of the CRA Podcast Scholarship for 2020.

The scholarship provides $7,500 to an interstate or regional student to relocate to Sydney to study AFTRS’ Graduate Diploma in Radio, which covers all aspects of audio, including podcasting.

Nicola will also complete a four-week internship at Southern Cross Austereo’s podcast network, PodcastOne Australia, later in the year.

“Nicola is a worthy recipient of the CRA Podcast Scholarship and we hope the experience acts as a spring-board to a creative and successful career in audio,” said Joan Warner, chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia. “Podcasting is a growing part of the industry and we’re pleased to support this initiative to help develop young talent and new Australian voices.”

AFTRS Head of Radio Fyona Smith said: “Nicola demonstrates a command of language well beyond her years. Her entry was sophisticated, articulate, highly emotive and deeply personal. She has an advanced understanding of the role of narrative and design in audio storytelling, her work is certainly one to keep an eye out for.”

Nicola completed a Bachelor of Arts at Melbourne University in 2019.

SCA Head of Podcasting, Grant Tothill, said: “We’re looking forward to Nicola joining the PodcastOne Australia team in Melbourne for four weeks to put what she has learned into practice.”

Nicola Sitch said: “Receiving the CRA Scholarship has helped facilitate my move to Sydney to attend AFTRS full-time. I am also thrilled by the opportunity to intern at PodcastOne Australia, a network I have always admired, and learn via osmosis from the team there. I cannot wait to implement my AFTRS learnings in a professional capacity.”

Nicola’s ambition is to produce live radio, radio features and podcasts.

“With a background in creative writing, I am enamoured with how audio formats can contribute a new dimension to the telling of Australian stories. It would be a privilege to contribute to this country’s great storytelling tradition,” she says.

AFTRS Graduate Diploma in Radio is a high level, intensive, hands-on course for upcoming on air and behind the scenes broadcasters. Offered as a one-year full time or two years part time course, the graduates achieve a high employment rate of 95% plus and work in broadcasting around the country.