• Making News

4/18/2012

In the real world, there are no do-overs.

Nowhere is this more true than in broadcast journalism, an unforgiving medium that requires precision in both content and delivery.

Suffolk provides students with excellent preparation for this pressure-cooker environment through hands on programs like Suffolk U News, a weekly student-run news show. And the professionals agree. Suffolk recently earned accolades for Top Student Newscast and Best Feature News Reporting from the Associated Press and the Radio Television Digital News Association.

Real world prep, real world success

Performing on cue and making a good first impression are also critical job hunting skills. So when Suffolk grad Brittany Weiner landed a job in broadcast news just days after graduation, her professor Dana Rosengard asked what helped her seal the deal.

“Brittany was a wonderful student, but competition is fierce in our industry,” says Rosengard. “She told me it was an episode of Suffolk U News she produced that helped her audition tape stand above the rest.”

Suffolk U News is the weekly online student-run news show Rosengard’s class produces each spring. Immersed in the often-chaotic production schedule, sometimes it’s difficult for him to appraise the broadcast objectively. Yet, when Rosengard looked back at the edition that won Brittany her job, he was struck by the show’s crisp pacing and flow.

“The hallmark of a beginner is a slower reading, a longer segment” explains Rosengard. A producer at ABC News for over a decade, Rosengard insists on professional-quality broadcasts from his students. This means shorter, harder-hitting stories that run to an exact schedule. There are no delayed starts, and each episode tapes live in Suffolk’s professional-grade Studio 73 without interruption – no matter what happens.

Students encouraged by industry nod

Convinced his students’ work was worthy of recognition, Rosengard entered a handful of pieces into the Associated Press and the Radio Television Digital News Association Awards. For the first time, Suffolk walked away with two top prizes.

The feature award went to senior broadcast journalism major, Katie Sampson, whose piece on Suffolk art alumnus-designed bracelets raising funds for Japanese Tsunami relief also earned her a recent Rammy Award.

“It's great to graduate with an award like this from such a reputable news gathering organization,” says Katie. “It really solidifies that this is what I want to pursue as a career. I will be much more confident now as I apply for reporting jobs knowing I have the basic skill set a beginning reporter needs.”

The top student newscast award went to Suffolk U News, which was represented by the same edition Brittany Weiner included on her tape. Each of the students who contributed to that broadcast – nearly a dozen in all working on a rotating series of jobs as reporters, writers, directors, editors, producers and camera crew – can now add another impressive honor to their resumes.

How’s that for a first impression?

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