Nine News Western Victoria Reporter, Oliver Haig’s love of writing, story telling and an innately curious mind has driven him to strive for a career as a journalist.
Originally from Melbourne, moving to a regional area “has been one of the best things I have done, so far”, said Oliver. “If you want to be a journalist, working in regional areas is a valuable step to take. You cover a wide variety of stories, from human interest, local events to the more devastating incidents of serious road crashes and bushfires.” Oliver experienced the fires first-hand when he covered several serious fires that destroyed homes and livestock and crossing live from the scene of the blaze to inform the community on any changes, meant that Oliver was fuelled on adrenaline for weeks. “Being close to the action was confronting,” he said. “You see people at their best and their worst and it’s important to find the fine line when reporting these events.”
Oliver has settled comfortably into the Ballarat region and has experienced how tight-knit regional communities come together. He has shared their stories and connected with locals by reporting their stories. “People rely on local news to keep up to date on daily events and provide social connectedness, whether its through television reporting or newspapers, especially now, when so much is changing due to Corona virus” he said.
“The relationships you build in a regional area are different to those you develop in the bigger cities,” said Oliver. Recently he was seconded to a position in Perth at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic where he said, “It taught me a lot about working in metropolitan media.” Prior to moving into regional reporting, Oliver worked as a producer at Channel 9 in Melbourne.
Whilst he always wanted to go into journalism, a work experience stint as a ‘runner’ at Channel 7 when he was in Year 10, heightened his interest in media. Meeting journalists and listening to their stories added colour to his days and taking advice from those journalists fired his passion further. Although only twenty-two, Oliver is articulate and mature beyond his years and feels very fortunate that he is ‘where he is’.
Asked where he sees his career in the next five years, Oliver said, “I wouldn’t have thought I would be where I am now, so I am very grateful. I want to go overseas, telling stories to a much bigger audience, which means keeping my options open and never getting too comfortable. You never know what you’ll be reporting on next. Above all, I will always strive to be the best at what I do.” Oliver is open about his love for his industry. He says, “The best advice I have ever received was – hard stories never get easier.”
You can catch Ollie on Nine News at 6.00pm