By Jason McKeown
WOAP co-editor Katie Whyatt spent Monday evening rubbing shoulders with the best sport journalists in the country, after being shortlisted for the David Welch Student Sports Writer of the Year.
Although Katie missed out on scooping the prize at the glitzy Sports Journalism Awards ceremony, held in London, she was highly commended and deserves to feel proud of beating thousands of entrants to get so far. The awards were judged by the likes of Paul Hayward, and Katie’s efforts have put her on the radar of the Daily Telegraph chief sportswriter and other leading national football journalists.
At WOAP we have long sought to showcase the writing of City supporters, and I am especially proud of the small part we have played in Katie’s rise and rise.
Katie was doing her own blog when she first approached me about writing for us, four years ago. Her quality of writing stood out a mile, and she instantly proved a hit with readers. Hopefully, the WOAP platform has helped to raise her profile in the City community, and steered her on the path to far bigger and greater things.
We have been exceptionally fortunate to have Katie with us, and her involvement in the site and influence has grown over the years. As co-editor she has had periods running the site single-handedly and always looks to push new ideas. Watching on from behind the scenes, it’s always exciting when we are about to publish an article from Katie, as inevitably it gets a brilliant response.
Katie spent last summer working for BBC Radio Leeds and evidently making a strong impression on their sports team. We’ve benefited from that by the way she has shaped the launch of our WOAP podcasts. But we know to we are on borrowed time with her. Next year she will complete her final year at University, before a career in print or broadcast journalism surely beckons.
Whatever the future holds, we’ll always be proud of our Katie and celebrating her every achievement. She has a heart of gold, an incredible work ethic that – considering she’s a student and should really be spending her life in the pub – astounds me, and she has bags of talent. The Sky’s the limit.
No win on Monday for Katie, but the future looks oh so very bright.