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7th July 2006 at 01:00
Amar Singh

Job: Editorjournalist

Studied: John Ruskin College in Selsdon, Croydon, 1994-1996

Qualifications: A-levels in sociology, English and general studies

Born: 1978

Amar Singh was the youngest editor of Eastern Eye - Britain's biggest-selling Asian newspaper, at the age of 25.

He has since moved on to writing for newspapers as well as commentating for Sky TV and the BBC.

"My sociology teacher was very good. Her name was Lindsay Nicholson and she made us all see the world in a new way.

"My English teacher, Sally Obertell, was inspiring. She nurtured my interest in journalism and appointed me editor of the college's yearbook in my final year.

"I wasn't really into extra-curricular activities, other than dossing around with my friends, but when I was given the task of putting together the yearbook, it was a project I really enjoyed working on.

"Although it was only two years, my time at college provided an essential bridge between school and university.

"All of a sudden, you are given responsibility and treated like an adult.

"I always advise people intending to go to university to opt for a college as opposed to staying on at a school sixth-form.

"After leaving college,I went to University of Westminster where I did a BA in broadcast journalism.

"But, many of my closest friends to this day are people I met in college. I think college was just right for my needs. I was focused on getting into Westminster, which had the most modern media campus ,and the A-levels I took prepared me well. "When I got to university and studied a module on social theory and the media, I found that it was a breeze as I had studied it all during my sociology A-level.

"My best memories invariably involve just hanging out with my friends and making each other laugh. My worst would probably be the 40-minute walk I had to take every day to get to the bus stop where I would catch the 130 to college.

"In the winter time, it was not a very pleasant way to start your day.

"But I will always have to give credit to Sally Obertell who simply told me to pursue my aspirations to be a journalist and, crucially, was the first teacher to tell me that I was good enough."

"I think you need that - whatever your chosen field."

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