My Melbourne with Jennifer Martin

November 14 / 149

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Welcome to my Melbourne.

I’m Daryl Holland and joining me today is Jennifer Martin.

Hi Jennifer.

Hi Daryl, how are you?

Good thank you. What is your official title, or should I say titles, here at the University?

I have a couple of roles. I’m a tutor in the Centre for Advancing Journalism, the Master of Journalism course, where I teach with Margaret Simons in “Researching and Writing Stories”. That’s where everyone comes in and they learn how to write news. And I play a very strong sub-editor role with that.

And then I’m editorial assistant with The Citizen, which is the online publication for the Master of Journalism students, and the editor there is Simon Mann. So I work with him and hopefully help him get the copy up and onto the site. And of course you’ve just done one of the stories, the Family First profile. We’re very proud of The Citizen and I love working there.

And my other role is over in the Department of Media and Communications. I work as a tutor and also a lecturer and subject coordinator of one of their writing subjects. I think that covers it.

How long have you been at the University?

I was an undergrad. I came straight from Donvale High in 1987, and did undergrad and honours in history. I had a big break and came back in 2008, I think, and did a Masters in Creative Writing, and then from there I started teaching and then took up the PhD. I’ve just done confirmation for the PhD.

Great. Can you tell us a little bit more about your PhD?

I’m smiling because it’s on the Walkley Award winning feature stories and I remember being told by Dr Carolyne Lee, who is now my PhD supervisor, “Make sure you do it on something you love”. So I’m doing it on these wonderful feature articles, and what is it that makes them award winning? And I’m saying they are saying something very important about Australia’s identity and the conversation we’re having with ourselves. Does that make sense?

Yes it does.

It’s only taken about two years to get that question, and it’ll change soon, I’m sure.

But you’ve had confirmation now so you’re on your way.

What’s your favourite thing about being at the University?

It was funny, I was in the office with Simon the other day and we were both working away hard and the bells just rang, and we just stopped, and thought it’s just a wonderful place to work. You’re just reminded that, OK, you are working really hard but you are in this place of learning where people are doing great things, and there is a constant interaction and stimulation with students and other academics. It’s really invigorating. It’s a privilege I think, to be here.

On campus, where do you like to go for a coffee or a bite to eat?

Well, Simon sends me out to Dax. I love Dax. And there’s that little one that’s just near the bookshop and in between the Babel Building. You know that one. What’s that one called? It’s great.

I don’t know what it’s called but it’s at the Arts West essentially …

That’s right. I like the coffee there but Dax would be the one for food and for coffee.

Finally, what is something your colleagues might not know about you?

I knew this question was coming, and wish I had a dark, dark secret. I think a lot of my colleagues know that I’m a bit of a suburban weekend rock star, with a band, but they mightn’t know that I’m very, very squeamish and can faint at the sight of blood, which is something my children are constantly trying to get me to do as a bit of a party trick. I did not tell you that so that my colleagues can then start telling me gory stories to me.

Or showing you their wounds.

No, no, no.

Thank you very much for joining us Jennifer.

My pleasure.

And that’s My Melbourne.

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