Walkley win for UQ graduate

27 Jul 2017
Carl (2nd left) with his ABC colleagues
Carl (2nd left) with his ABC colleague

University of Queensland graduate Carl Smith has been recognised at the 2017 Walkley Awards in the category of Young Journalist of the Year (longform), for his radio series Bionic Bodies.

The ABC Radio National The Science Show series focused on people whose lives had been changed as a result of advances in bionics.

Mr Smith said the award was a huge endorsement for The Science Show and Radio National's Science Unit, which supported young journalists and backed ambitious projects.

“The award highlights how important it is for journalists to shine the light on science, particularly the incredible work going on here in Australia,” Mr Smith said.

“I met so many outstanding researchers working to restore or replace body parts in those who have lost them, and it was remarkable talking to people like Di Ashworth who trialled Australia’s first bionic eye.

“The award is an acknowledgement of their work and perseverance – without them, there wouldn’t be a story.

“For me, the series was a monster – two one-hour documentaries exploring new research in this incredible field.

“I had a few short stints to focus exclusively on the series, but much of the work happened on weekends or outside work hours.

“The award is proof to any young journalist that hard work can pay off.”

Mr Smith studied a Bachelor of Science / Journalism dual degree at UQ while working as an intern at ABC.

“UQ gave me the opportunity to mix my two interests – science and journalism,” he said.

“The university also has a great suite of facilities that let me translate those interests into my first journalism projects.

“JAC Radio was the perfect place to build basic skills, and the internship program within Journalism let me work with some of Australia’s best reporters and documentary makers.

“UQ’s Science program is outstanding, and I’m still using much of the knowledge from that degree in my job today,” he said.

Mr Smith is based in Sydney and works for Radio National’s Science Unit. He also presents the podcast series Short and Curly and is writing a new Science TV show.

“I’m really excited to keep finding creative ways to tell Australian science stories,” he said.

“I want to keep exploring the podcast and digital video spaces, but I’ll keep coming back to longform audio projects.”

Media: Gillian Ievers, g.ievers@uq.edu.au, 07 3346 1634 or Jo Hickman, jo.hickman@uq.edu.au, 07 3346 0384