Georgio Platias named Walkley’s Student Journalist of the Year

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Experienced journalists and journalists-to-be were congratulated for their investigative talents on Wednesday at the Walkley’s 2021 Mid-Year Celebration of Journalism.

They ceremony rewards the efforts of journalists aged 28 and under who demonstrate excellence in the fundamental tenets of the profession, as well as the ability to present distinctive and original journalism that pushes the boundaries of the craft. The Mid-Year Celebration entries were peer-judged and winners were selected on the basis of journalistic excellence.

Among the award recipients was Greek Australian journalism student Georgio Platias, who is currently studying at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS). He received the award for two works titled, Inside Out: Mohsen’s Story and Politics, Leadership, and Public Policy with Peter van Onselen.

Speaking to The Greek Herald, Platias said he was “incredibly honoured” to tell a “very important story with Mohsen’s story”.

“His journey is inspiring, thought-provoking, and humbling. It all feels a bit surreal, but I am very proud to be bestowed with such an honour,” Platias said.

Describing the lead-up to the ceremony as a “nerve-wracking couple of weeks”, Platias applauded his fellow nominees, Emily and Stephanie, for also putting together notable pieces of journalism.

Winners of the Walkley’s 2021 Mid-Year Celebration of Journalism. Photo: Supplied

“…I wasn’t expecting to receive the award – being nominated was a huge achievement in itself – anything more was a bonus,” Platias added.

All three of the nominees for the prestigious award were UTS journalism students, which Platias says shows the caliber of the University’s journalism program. The Greek Australian student also gave special mention to UTS journalism lecturer Helen Vatsikopoulos.

“Without the UTS teaching staff, winning the award would not be possible. What I think sets us apart is that we have actual journalists teaching journalism.”

“Over my studies, I have learnt something from all my teachers, all accomplished journalists, willing to share their skills and knowledge.”

Georgio Platias with Helen Vatsikopoulos. Photo: Supplied

“Helen supervised my capstone project – Inside Out: Mohsen’s Story – acting as an inspiration, mentor, and more importantly, a friend. Her guidance was/is invaluable, and she is as much a part of me winning this award.”

With an award already under his belt, Platias looks to go far as a journalist. The Greek Australian concluded by saying journalism will stay with him for the rest of his life as he hopes to continue telling important stories.

“For me, journalism is a way to critically think about the world we live in. I think stories that are empathetic, authentic, and contribute to public discourse are vital,” Platias said.

“I am currently finishing off my Law degree, completing my honours thesis next semester, so after that is all done, we shall see what lies ahead. But no matter what I decide to do, journalism will definitely be involved. I enjoy telling stories, being creative, and talking to a variety of interesting people with good stories to tell. All in all, it’s about fighting the good fight.”

Natassia Chrysanthos, education reporter for The Sydney Morning Herald, was also a finalist in the ‘Shortform journalism’ category with her piece, Hundreds of Sydney students claim they were sexually assaulted.

“It has been a great privilege to report so extensively on this story, which I believe is extremely important,” Ms Chrysanthos told The Greek Herald previously.

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