Being a graduate from Nottingham Trent is an important contribution in itself, as the university is so well respected by the journalism industry
More about Ella
When Ella Pengelly graduated in 2018, it was the start of a very exciting career journey. Now working at one of the best-known beauty and celebrity magazines in the country, Ella tells us how that journey began at NTU. She also shares a key piece of advice to anyone pursuing a media career.
“I already knew NTU was the best place to study broadcast journalism,” she says. ”What I didn’t know, was whether I’d feel at home in Nottingham. I'd looked around the city when I came to a uni open day. From then on, choosing NTU was an extremely easy decision to make.”
It wasn’t too long before Ella was networking with some key players in the media industry.
“During my three years at university, we had a two-week work placement and I managed to secure this at Viacom International Media Networks, working with the teams at MTV, Nickelodeon, and Comedy Central.
“This definitely gave me an insight into the type of career I wanted within journalism, and the alternative paths you could take. Seeing how those types of industries and channels operated, gave me even more of a drive to use my creative side in pitching and creating content," she says.
Ella works as social media editor at OK! Magazine – something she describes as her dream job. It’s an exciting role, where there’s no such thing as a typical working day.
“I help source the best stories and drive social traffic in creative ways. I'm responsible for identifying news stories and exclusives that will perform well on our pages by engaging and increasing our social audience.
“I also manage the social media channels for OK! and the content that is posted across each platform, such as Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and Twitter," she says.
As with anyone en route to their dream role, Ella’s career has seen quite a lot of variety along the way. “I started in regional news as a senior reporter and eventually as content editor; social media was a natural continuation for me as I grew a better understanding of its importance in journalism and progression for businesses.
Talking to Ella, it’s clear the work ethic on her course helped give her the skills and resilience she relies on today. She’s also convinced its reputation helped to open doors.
“Being a graduate from Nottingham Trent is an important contribution in itself, as the university is so well respected by the journalism industry” she says.
Ella’s hiring coincided with a period of unprecedented world events. It inevitably created some challenges.
“Working as a content editor during the pandemic – and having to run and manage a newsroom remotely, whilst adapting to the new working from home environment, as well as keeping on top of breaking news in a completely unprecedented situation – it was certainly character-building!"
And what of that one piece of advice Ella would share with others looking for a media career? “Although I think I already knew this when I graduated from university, I didn’t do it enough: trust your instincts."
“You also need to trust the process. It can take a long time to find something you love doing. Remember that your degree from Trent is valued in all industries, so make sure you strive for what you deserve.”