Today, most people feel that a degree is an absolute necessity when seeking a job in sports broadcasting. It has not always been this way, however, and the rise of BBC Sport’s head of production, Debbie Dubois, is a perfect example of making your way to the top on talent and initiative, determination and resilience.

She says: “The industry felt quite different in the late eighties when I first started out, and so my route in and background didn’t necessarily mirror that of my colleagues. Having not come via the university degree route I struggled with that initially in terms of my career progression and the confidence to believe that I could make that next step.

“Think more broadly than sport to gain as wide an experience across a wealth of genres at the start of your career; that wider knowledge and experience will stand you in good stead and the skills you gain will be transferrable to sport but will give you a different perspective”

“Now it’s not even a consideration; I see it as a positive that I came in without a degree, from a northern working-class background, and worked my way up,” Dubois claims. “You need determination and resilience to push through those challenges and know that you bring something different to each role in terms of your background and experiences. Finding a mentor who can give you that support, endorsement, and push is also crucial, and at various points along the way I had that guidance when I needed it.”

With diversity and inclusion at the forefront of most broadcasters’ agendas now, and with International Women’s Day 2021 on 8 March upon us, it is important to see how those in the industry can make positive steps towards wider diversity and inclusion.

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