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Student journalist scoops award with rare Shaun Ryder interview

chrismcquadeA construction worker who turned to journalism after the housing market crashed has won an award after landing a rare interview with pop star Shaun Ryder.

Chris McQuade, left, a student journalist at Glasgow Clyde College, won the Scoop of the Year prize in the annual Scottish Student Journalism Awards (SSJA) held in Glasgow’s National Piping Centre.

The 34-year-old, who has done work experience with the Rutherglen Reformer, impressed judges with his piece on the Happy Mondays and Black Grape frontman.

Ryder is regarded as being notoriously difficult to pin down for interview.

Said Chris: “I am delighted to have won Scoop of the Year as it’s amazing to be recognised by industry professionals. It shows that hard work pays off.

“I had lots of stories to submit this year so it was quite hard to select the right story for the right field. I was just glad to be at the ceremony and winning the award was a very welcome bonus.”

Chris, who is due to graduate this summer, has a background in construction and didn’t start writing until he was 30.

He added: “I thought I would try journalism when the housing market crashed and the construction industry suffered. The industry is changing but I believe that journalists can change with it.”

The award was judged by a panel of industry experts. As part of his prize, Chris has been invited to attend this year’s Society of Editors conference in Carlisle.

Karen Bale, Journalism and Media lecturer at Glasgow Clyde College, said: “Winning Scoop of the Year is something we are especially proud of, and Chris McQuade’s interview with Shaun Ryder is something that even the most established journalist would struggle to secure.”