“You just have to be yourself. I feel like a lot of people in radio will try and be like someone they hear but at the end of the day, everyone wants new personalities coming through, people who take risks and do their own thing.”
That is the message former University of Sunderland student Jack Hellier has for anyone trying to break into radio.
Now, the hard work is paying off as Jack has landed his dream role presenting for In Demand Radio in his home city of Liverpool.
“It’s the first full-time presenter role I’ve had,” he said.
“For me it’s the best possible scenario. My goal was to always come back to the North West, but a lot of opportunities were leaving Liverpool and going to places like Manchester or down to London.
“Then In Demand came along and I couldn’t have asked for a better station.”
Jack spent many years honing his talents on University-based radio station Spark, presenting a dance show every Saturday night for a year then a day-time show once a week for two years.
Now the voice of In Demand’s early breakfast show, Jack says he owes his success to Sunderland.
He said: “It comes down to the facilities and the guidance that we’re given in comparison to other universities. We’re very spoilt in what we’ve got.
“The studios at Sunderland are on the next level and I don’t think you’re going to get that at any other university.
“We visited other student radio universities and they’d have one little room dedicated to it and then at Sunderland there’s a whole building.”
Richard Berry, Senior Lecturer in Radio at the University of Sunderland, said: “It’s great to see Jack being picked up by this new station.
“We know from working with him that he loves his home city, so it must be a genuine thrill for him being on the radio in Liverpool and the North West.
“Jack made some great radio in Sunderland and it’s going to be great to see him progress from here.”
What does the future hold for Jack?
“In all honesty, I think I’ve struck gold with In Demand,” he said.
“You don’t get many stations like it that play music people actually want to hear and that’s really important.
“They’ve put a lot of trust in me and let me do my own thing, so as long as it’s there I can see my future with In Demand.
“I’m just very grateful to have a supportive family, girlfriend and university behind me.”