University of Sunderland's 25-Year Legacy: Nurturing Radio Talents and Honoring Alumni like Jordan North
Jordan North

The University of Sunderland has dedicated 25 years to refining and nurturing the abilities and potential of emerging radio personalities, with notable alumni like BBC Radio 1 host Jordan North.

Dr Caroline Mitchell, Professor of Radio and Participation at the University of Sunderland, said: “As someone whose career has spanned the development of Radio Studies, I am delighted that the University has hosted this conference, giving a warm Sunderland welcome to radio scholars and people now doing research in newer areas of audio and podcasting.”

Jordan North, who graduated from the University in 2011 with a First-Class degree in Media Production, received an Honorary Fellowship during the University’s Summer Graduation Ceremonies at the Stadium of Light in July this year.

Starting his radio career on the University’s community station Spark, Jordan has worked for The Hits, Capital Manchester, Rock FM and appeared as a cover presenter in a number of BBC Radio 1 shows from 2014.

He finished second in the 20th series of ITV’s I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! in 2020 – and was announced as a co-host on the BBC Radio 1 daily drivetime show in 2021, taking over from Nick Grimshaw, alongside fellow presenter, Newcastle-born Vick Hope.

Richard Berry, Senior Lecturer in Radio at the University and manager of Spark, said: “Sunderland has long been known as a place where students not only learn how to make radio, but over the last 40+ years it’s also been central to the development of radio (and now podcast) studies.

“Leading academic work has been written by Sunderland academics and this conference is part of that long tradition. The conference also allows us to welcome back graduates who are now international scholars and producers in their own right.

“We’ve also recently celebrated Spark’s 14th birthday, so this, together with the conference, is a nice alignment of the two things that we do in this department.”

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