Murrow Symposium



On April 2, 2015 students in the Edward R. Murrow College of Communication were invited to participate in the 40th Edward R.  Murrow Symposium. Students were able to be involved in resume critique sessions and were offered opportunities to interact with professionals in different fields.

One of the sessions I attended was called “View from the Fifty: How to Blitz the Sports Reporting Field”. This session was a three-member panel that included Eric Johnson of KOMO-TV in Seattle, Art Eckman of HOA, and Janie McCauley from the Associate Press. Each offered different insights from their own experiences throughout their professional careers and offered advice for us aspiring journalists.

One of the things that stuck with me was when Art Eckman talked about always being prepared with your research as well as taking advantage of advice of others that had been there before and getting along with those in the industries. He stressed that while there are people without egos that are willing to help you, there will be just as many people that have sizeable egos that do not want to offer assistance. However, Eckman also wanted to impress the fact that there was still opportunity to learn even from those people as well.

I also had the opportunity that Eric Johnson held in Studio B. His session, titled “Crafting the Tale”, was a session about the beauty of storytelling and how to capture the moments and describe them. Johnson noted that not everyone was a natural storyteller, but that there was opportunity for everyone to advance their abilities and skills. One message that really stuck with me in this workshop was that everything was worth exploring. Everything has a story that can be told, and that people will be interested in hearing different perspectives. His history as a sports journalist helped teach him which sports he loved, and which sports he had to care about. During all this time, he said that he approached each assignment with such fervor and excitement that he tried to pass along to the viewer.

As a sportswriter for The Daily Evergreen, Janie McCauley stopped by the office and I had an opportunity to hear her experiences in a smaller, more focused workshop that was just for the sports department of the Evergreen. McCauley wanted us to know that that her experiences taught her to think outside the box, to be curious about situations. She told a story of how she recruited a pro football player to try his hand at curling. This was during the Winter Olympics in Vancouver. She used this analogy to explain that there is always a different way to tell a story or even make up a new story as well.

I really enjoyed the opportunity to see these professionals and was thankful that they took the time out of their busy schedules to come to WSU and offer advice and help us students out. It was encouraging to see those who had come before us to offer their perspectives and thoughts. It is up to us to take their words to heart and earn our way into the work field.

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