Thomas Seymat: The job I have now didn’t exist when I started studying

Euronews' head of immersive journalism talks about developing a career at the forefront of journalism practice.

2018.05.28 | Hannah Spyksma

Thomas Seymat/Supplied

Thomas Seymat was a little unsure about joining Mundus Journalism in 2008. He was keen to study abroad and liked the idea of joining a programme with a global network. But as the first French national to take part in the degree, he was worried about what his job prospects back home would be afterwards. Would French newsrooms recognise the programme? What about all the industry contacts he would have made by studying in a French j-school? How would he find a job afterwards? The one thing Thomas didn’t account for though, was that the job he would end doing hadn’t even been invented at that point. 

 "Whoever is joining Mundus Journalism now will have a job in the future that doesn't exist right now." 

Skip forward to 2018 and Thomas is in charge of VR for Euronews. “The bet eventually paid off,” he says, skyping from his newsroom in Lyon, France, on a busy Thursday morning. After graduating, Thomas returned to France and freelanced for a while in order to make those valuable connections. He knew that he didn’t want to cover local or national politics, and had an interest in foreign correspondence. He eventually landed a job at Euronews in 2012, “and then my education and my job really helped. I flourished, mostly because of that,” he says. The network he had made during his Mundus years, as well as analytical training issues relating to journalism, international relations and global change, proved valuable in ways that he couldn’t have imagined when he started on the Master. 

Thomas’ work at Euronews requires him to think globally and comparatively about journalism and reporting on pressing issues. But more than that, it requires him to network and take risks, something that he consciously decided to do all those years ago when he signed up for “this crazy master’s” that would take him out of his comfort zone and down a less-traditional journalism training path. Working with emerging technology like VR, Thomas has had to create and define his job at every step of the way. He has not only pioneered the use of immersive journalism in his newsroom but has also secured several large-scale grants to experiment with this new storytelling medium. "Whoever is joining Mundus Journalism now will have a job in the future that doesn't exist right now," Thomas says; "my job wasn't even invented when I was studying."

Read more about what Thomas has learned from two years developing immersive journalism practices for Euronews, over at our Medium publication.

News, Alumni
Tags: VR, immersive journalism, future of journalism, storytelling, Euronews, journalism, journalism 360, 360 video