Once again, a Massey student wins national investigative journalism prize

Baz Macdonald at the gala awards evening in Auckland. A Massey postgraduate journalism diploma student has won the $1000 Bruce Jesson Emerging Journalism Award for investigative journalism for 2017, the fifth straight year a Massey student has taken out the prestigious prize. 

Baz Macdonald won for his story on how, with more New Zealanders entering into de facto relationships, the benefit system’s rules are struggling to keep up. This means some people may end being investigated for fraud.

The judges told Baz his article “was exactly the kind of critical, informed, analytical and creative writing - which will contribute to public debate in New Zealand on an important issue - we want to foster.

“We hope this award may help in a small way to encourage you to keep on pursuing important public issues in your career in journalism.” 

Baz was delighted at his win, announced at a gala event in Auckland on October 31.

“It is such an honour to be the recipient of this award and I am so appreciative to the Bruce Jesson judges for finding my work worthy of it,” he said.

“There is a lot of uncertainty to grapple with as a young journalist, but an award like this is very reassuring that I am on the right track. 

“I am excited for my future as a journalist and am sure this award will help me find opportunities to continue down this path."

Baz thanked his lecturers at Massey.

“It is only through their teaching and inspiration that I had the courage and knowledge to write the stories I have this year. I have learnt so much from all my teachers.”

The Massey winners over the past five years have been students on either the Postgraduate Diploma in Journalism or Master of Journalism

The Massey team places a great emphasis on investigative journalism in its postgraduate programme.

The Bruce Jesson award is named in honour of the late investigative journalist and is judged by a panel of industry and academic representatives.