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Award handed out in memory of budding journalist

A former journalism student has been awarded a prize set up in memory of a budding journalist who died suddenly at the age of 21.

Sahil Jaidka was presented with the Darren Joliny Award from Glasgow Caledonian University after graduating with first-class honours in Multimedia Journalism this year.

He was awarded the prize in memory of Darren, a journalism graduate from the university who collapsed and died suddenly while playing football in January last year from Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome.

Sahil, who was the highest performing student in his year, is now working on the sports desk at Clyde and Forth Media and will also carry out an internship with Sky News next month.

Sahil Jaidka, centre, is pictured with Darren's classmate Amy Houston, left, and his mum Kathleen Joliny.

He said: “Darren was a truly inspirational figure, so to receive such a prestigious award, named after someone who is so fondly remembered, is a great honour and means so much to me.

“After four years of studying, I feel fully prepared for the world of work.

“Following placements at publications such as the Daily Record, Herald and Evening Times, Glaswegian and being the sports editor of our own student magazine at GCU, The Edit, I subsequently gained employment at Clyde and Forth Media.

“The past four years have been great fun and I would not have succeeded had it not been for the support of my lecturers on the course, my family, friends and colleagues at Clyde and Forth Media.”

Sahil received the annual award from Darren’s mum Kathleen at a prizegiving ceremony, where Darren’s classmate Amy Houston read a poem in his memory.

Ken Garner, programme leader in BA Multimedia Journalism, added: “Sahil has been an excellent student throughout his four years on the course, and stands out as the worthy winner of the Darren Joliny Award this year, even in what’s been a very high quality graduating class.

“His practical and professional achievements and work experience – being our elected representative on the NCTJ Student Council, and serving on the sports desk of local weekly papers throughout his final year – have been matched by consistently first class academic work.

“Sahil’s also been a leader of his class socially, a popular and effective organiser of events, and someone I know the whole class likes and admires, and that’s something he has in common with the role Darren played for his year.”