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Team 2016

The Foreign Correspondent study tour was conceived, delivered and is led by Dr Saba Bebawi who believes that journalism students can best understand international journalism in different countries and cultural contexts.

She has worked as a journalist since 1995, where she started working as a broadcaster/producer for Radio Jordan English service for four years, and also worked on a contract basis for CNN, World New Events (USA), and Dubai TV. Currently she is Senior Lecturer at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS), and a media development policy consultant and a media trainer. She has previously held academic positions at Monash University and Swinburne University in Australia, in addition to Zayed University in the UAE.

Saba is a journalism and media researcher who has published on media power and the role of media in democracy-building, in addition to investigative journalism in conflict and post-conflict regions. She is author of ‘Media Power and Global Television News: The role of Al Jazeera English’, and ‘Investigative Journalism in the Arab World: Issues and Challenges’, in addition to co-editor of ‘Social Media and the Politics of Reportage: The ‘Arab Spring’.
— SABA BEBAWI - Project Director and Study Tour Leader
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Andrew Dodd is the Program Director of Journalism at Swinburne. He was a broadcaster at ABC Radio National, where he presented many of the network¹s programs and founded the Media Report. He was a national reporter at ABC TV¹s 7.30 Report and a business and media reporter at The Australian newspaper. He has also worked at Triple R FM and RadioNetherlands and has freelanced for The Age, Crikey and several other publications. He has reported from Asia, Europe, the Caribbean, North America and Africa.
— ANDREW DODD - Study Tour Leader and Editor
I love to tell a good story. I completed my Bachelor of Journalism and Media Communication in 2015, six months after my first Foreign Correspondent study tour. Since then I have been working in the travel industry and writing travel pieces for The Australian Times. In 2017 I will undertake my Masters Degree in Journalism at Melbourne University. Until then I will continue to travel and write and travel some more.
— KRYSTAL MIZZI - Digital Media Editor
CHRISTINE BYLLAARDT
Najat is a lecturer in film and translator. In addition to her chosen specialisation of film studies, Najat has experience in media and communications especially radio and television. She spent seven years as announcer/producer at Radio Jordan’s English service and has worked in television and film production in Canada. In addition to teaching, her jobs have included working in development, production, narrating, writing and translating and other journalistic and administrative work.

Born and raised in Kuwait, Najat has also lived, studied and worked in Switzerland, Jordan, the UK and Canada. When she is not traveling or planning and researching her next trip Najat, is usually catching up with family and friends, as well as on reading and viewing material. Outside the world of film and media her interests include yoga and herbology.
— NAJAT DAJANI - Local Consulting Producer
It is truly incredible to be given the experience of working as a journalist in a foreign country as part of my university studies. Throughout my life I have always had a passion for world news and a keen interest in Middle Eastern affairs. The study tour to Jordan will give me a firsthand understanding of issues that are far different from what I have previously covered. I cannot wait to work on stories that will be outside of my comfort zone which will increase my ability and confidence as a journalist.
— ANTHONY PINDA
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My name is Thomas Cunningham, I study Journalism and Politics at Swinburne University. I wanted to go on this study tour to better my knowledge about what it really means to work as a foreign correspondent, especially one in a region as heavily reported on as the Middle East. From this I want to return home with a new bank of skills, stories, and a deeper insight into how another culture lives and the struggles and triumphs that are part of their everyday life.
— THOMAS CUNNINGHAM
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My name is Vincent Dwyer and I am studying Journalism at Swinburne University. I am also an intern at VICE and ACCLAIM magazine. I’m not doing myself any favours staying put in the concrete urban sprawl of Melbourne. The stories are here, but they merely touch the surface of supposed human interest. In my opinion the real world of human interest is in the favelas of Rio, the slums of Johannesburg or the refugee camps of the Middle East. To deny myself the opportunity to explore the wealth of stories ingrained in these places is to place myself at a great disadvantage not just as a journalist, but as a human being. With this study tour to Jordan I hope to extend my skills as a writer and mediator of news. But most of all I hope to expand my knowledge on a world that is too often shunned and forgotten by mainstream media, as well as the greater western populace.
— VINCENT DWYER
My name is Amy and I’m a 21 year old journalism and law student at Swinburne University. The Middle East provides a fascinating cultural setting and I can’t wait to see, hear and learn so much about the lives of the people in Jordan. My goal for the tour is to highlight the humanity of a nation often dismissed as dangerous and unstable due to its location. I want to show Australian audiences how we can relate to the experiences of people in a country so culturally different to our own. I am so excited to work outside of my comfort zone with a team of student journalists.
— AMY COLLINS
My name is Michaela and I’m currently completing my first year of the Master of Arts in Journalism program at UTS. My background is in radio and I have been a presenter at FBi Radio in Sydney since 2008. I have hosted the drive-­‐time program, Arvos, as well as the station’s storytelling program, All The Best, and contribute to the political show, Backchat. The stories I have researched and developed as a journalist have been mostly Sydney focused, so I welcome the opportunity to apply my skills to a completely different environment. I see this study trip as an opportunity to gain a broader and more informed perspective on a region I have only experienced through the media. I look forward to meeting a wide range of journalists and locals on this study tour, learning from them and sharing their stories.
— MICHAELA NIAMH
I am a final year Masters of Journalism student at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS). As a keen student of history as well, I am raring to explore Jordan’s past, to learn how this has influenced its society at present and to report on some of the challenges Jordan faces today. I am very excited to experience the role of the foreign correspondent and hope to make the most of this brush with a people and country I currently know little about.
— MATTHEW ABOTOMEY
I am in my final year of Masters of Arts in Journalism, at the University of Technology Sydney. Outside of university, I spend most of my days tapping away on the keys of my laptop as part of my day job, a freelance journalist. I write mostly for SBS online – health, wellness, Indigenous issues, lifestyle and food – and a few other outlets or publications, as opportunities and gigs arise. I’ve produced two radio documentaries for ABC’s Radio National, edited health industry magazines and worked in media relations for government and non-profit organisations. As a curious chatterbox, I use the field of journalism to do many of the things in life that I would probably end up doing for free if I wasn’t working in media: talking to interesting people, storytelling, learning about other cultures, asking why and paying witness to life’s most important or fascinating occurrences. I hope this trip marks the start of a freelance career that also spans foreign humanitarian affairs. I want to discover the heart of the Jordanian people and report stories that will connect Australian audiences with those living in the very diverse Middle East.
— YASMIN NOONE
My interest in foreign politics and culture has been the driving force behind both my studies and independent work. I have recently graduated from a Bachelor of International and Global Studies throughout which I travelled internationally to both live, work and volunteer for varying periods of time. I enjoy immersing myself in the unknown and learning as much as possible from the experience. Having only learnt about Middle Eastern affairs from afar, I hope to achieve a greater understanding of both Jordanian culture and its journalistic landscape from participating in the tour.
— CHARLOTTE GRIEVE
Dieter Knierim is a founding member of Knierim Brothers. Based in Sydney, Dieter is an emerging photographic and video artist, he has worked with peak bodies such as First Peoples Disability Network, People with Disability Australia and Women With Disabilities Australia to produce projects which reveal the complexity of the issues facing people with disability both internationally and nationally. Currently he is in his final year of a bachelor’s degree in communication at UTS.
— DIETER KNIEROM - Documentary Film Maker