Friday, March 28, 2014


Mary Perez:

I really enjoyed David Culver's conversation with the class tonight. It was nice to get a different perspective of how to create and deliver a broadcast story. Several of my biggest takeaways were:

1) Characters are everything in the story
2) A story can be successful by the way you deliver it. Your tone must be engaging and relatable. 
3) A broadcast news reporter’s job is to both inform and entertain. You have to cater to the audience.

He really gave me hope for the future of reporting stories. 

Grace Ries:

My takeaway from David Culver’s discussion was that as a journalist you have to be flexible. You also have to have a strong intuition and ability to gauge where people stand on issues. If you can learn to hone in your skills in both those areas you will be able to take full advantage of opportunities when they pop up. Timing is everything. 

Isabelle Caplan:

I was surprised at how much work David had to put in for his stories. Usually when I see anchors and reporters on-air, I assume they're just reading a story that was already written, but David has to pitch story ideas, conduct interviews, and pick out what to include in his reports, often without a lot of direction. He seems very hardworking, which is a characteristic that is probably very important in a job that forces you to produce new material on a daily basis.  

Katerina Papas:

Each speaker we’ve had has been inspiring in different ways.  I found David Culver inspiring in the sense that he has a clear drive and is currently accomplishing his goals while staying motivated towards his future.  As a jaded college student, the future has always seemed like an imaginary far-away land—and the question of what are you going to be when you “grow-up” has slowly become “what are you going to do in a couple years.”  The fact he has taken something he loves—telling stories—and made it his profession is extremely inspiring.  His outlook on broadcast journalism as “telling stories” gave me a whole new prospective on a career that I used to (as in, my whole life up to two hours ago) think of as news accompanied with pretty faces so people pay attention.  His stories were moving and I was really interested by how personal he lets his job become.  I really enjoyed him visiting our class!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

2.27 Notes

Notes for Thursday, March 27, 14
  • ·      Next week

o   Guest professor
§  Will be doing grammar exercises
§  Will be doing exercises with broadcast journalism
  • ·      PR assignment due Saturday, March 29 at noon
  • ·      David Culver

o   Elements of a good story
§  Characters
·      Being able to connect with them with the audience and make them likeable
§  The way that one engages with people
·      Tone in the voice
o   Be theatrical
§  Reliability
§  Less of your voice the better
§  Short sentences
·      Keeps the audience pulled in
§  Cater to the audience
·      Inform and entertain
o   Give good facts in an entertaining way
§  When you don’t have the answer to the questions, put the questions out there for other people to ask
o   What did you learn from starting in a smaller market
§  Perspective
·      When you get someone to tell the story, it is a great story
§  It is about the process
·      Adds to the news which is received and the entertainment

§  It’s all about relationships that are developed
     One of the biggest things I took away from hearing David speak was to set end goals, but to let things go unplanned sometimes. He really shared how he set up how his whole life would be and then how it didn't work like that. Often times, it seems as if we are all forced into planning every second of every day of the rest or our lives and it was interesting to get advice that stressed us not doing that. I also liked the fact that he was so honest about how he got a job out of college. It was another unique perspective that he offered. Most times, we hear the conventional way of just sending out resumes, but he really put himself out there.

Culver Takeaway - Aliya Levinstein

     One of the greatest things that I took away from David Culver's talk was the importance of telling a story well and making sure that the story is worth telling.  I have never been someone who has been able to tell stories very well, but the elements that he mentioned are really important things to remember.  Thinking about what makes a story great and how to convey that message are skills that can transfer over to all sorts of communications, from writing to formal and informal verbal communications.  Engaging an audience and making a story personable is very important to telling an effective story and these are things I will keep in mind going forward.

Culver Takeaway - Elisha Brown

When discussing story content, David Culver stressed that character is key. It's important to highlight a subject; keep in mind that you're essentially storytelling. I also found it interesting that Culver said broadcasting is about both informing and entertaining. I think this is why is why broadcast is so popular. Culver discussed the short length of broadcast stories - this point stresses me out because sometimes I can lack concision.

Take-Away David Culver Taytum Sanderbeck

I thought that our guest speaker today was extremely charismatic and I've noticed that has been a trend in all of our guest speakers. It seems to be an important quality when working in communications. If you want to work with other people, get what you want out of them and make a good impression, you want people to like you. It is a generally good quality to be friendly and inviting. I also enjoyed his fascination with the people he reported on and his willingness to look beyond the main subjects of the story. He was good at finding the heart warming parts of his stories.

David Culver Takeaway - Emily Ambach

One point that Culver brought up that both surprised me and stuck with me was that you should always stay detached from your work, no matter how much you may love it. At first, I was confused by why he would say that as it makes sense to invest yourself into your job. He then gave he reasoning, which was that you must stay detached so that if you wake up and don't love what you do you can walk away from it at any second. I agree with that because I think is important that we work for something we love to do and not something we see as an obligation.

David Culver Takeaway- Gabriela Berríos

David Culver brought us sort of the inside scoop of the broadcast journalism industry today and his take on it. I really liked when he shared his stories and his experiences with them. He also gave us a really personal take on the industry and how does it affect one personally but at the same time how one grows from it.

David Takeaway

In listening to David speak, I was struck by how personally invested he was in his stories. I was impressed with his emphasis on journalism ethics, and his genuine goal to meet new people and tell their stories. I related to this desire to tell stories and interact with others, and made me excited to keep pursuing broadcast journalism.

David Culver takeaway - Morgan Tripi

David explained very well through his personal experience that it is okay to for your future plans to vary from what you had in mind.  This seems to be a reoccurring theme that Taylor and Bernadine also talked about.  It's important to remember to keep your path flexible and timing is a big part of one's success.  I admired how he took a full time job his senior year and worked it in to his schedule even though he had to work on the weekends.  His had work there eventually led him up to where he is now.

David Culver takeaway - Michelle Chong

I liked that he shared his journey to becoming an anchor on TV and how he emphasized his love for storytelling - it's inspiring to see someone passionate about his job as he is. One thing that was interesting was learning about the process of putting a package together. However, I did kind of get stressed out from just listening to how crammed you are in terms of time in order to pull a story together. Also, another thing that stood out was how the many opportunities in his life came by just being there at the right time and place.

Culver Takeaway- Madison Moore

What struck me the most about David Culver was his connections to his stories. He truly lives and breathes Northern Virginia and it shows. As a broadcast journalist this has worked to his advantage, allowing him to get the first scoop about stories because he is so immersed in the area. Although he was born and raised her I think a big thing about his connections is how genuine he is. Even if he had not been born in Fairfax he would have gotten the private interview with Robin Young because he put in the effort to let her know he was genuinely sorry for his loss. This kind of genuineness comes across in his stories, and brings his characters to life.

David Culver Takeaway - Morgan Lyons

What I took away from David's talk was his knowledge of how to be a good reporter. He's new in the industry but I can assume that he got to where he is because he truly knows what he is doing, and is good at it.  He did have a little luck like a lot of people do landing jobs, but if he did not know his stuff then he wouldn't have had the luck and chances that he has received.

Take away

I got that we have to stay true to who we are in this business no matter what but know that the choices we make will always represent us as a brand.  Don't do things because of money but do things because they are fulfilling.  We should always be professional but have fun and enjoy ourselves along the way.

Bernadine Karunaratne Takeaway- Gabriela Berríos

I really liked Bernadine's visit last Thursday. I really appreciated her advice on how to market ourselves on such a competitive workplace. I also liked that she continually mentioned that one needs to be happy at your work and be able to express who you are while working. This is something that is barely mentioned when looking for a job but is essential for one's happiness. Overall I really liked her energy and she was really nice. 

Karunaratne takeaway - Michelle Chong

One thing that really stuck to me after hearing her speak was advice on creating a good, marketable "personal brand" that will set you apart from the competition. She was honest with her experiences and advocated for honesty and to make finding happiness in your career a goal. I thought she was a good and inspiring speaker and I think she mostly tried to motivate us rather than tell the absolute truth on how hard it is to stand out and make a mark in the real world.

Bernadine Takeaway

I was pleased with Bernadine's emphasis on finding personal happiness in work. I was expecting her message to oriented on how to find the most "successful" job in terms of prestige and earnings, but I'm glad she redefined "successful" to mean a job that was a good fit for you. I really liked her emphasis on being a positive leader in the workplace, and the importance of taking advantage of your talents and the talents of your coworkers to ensure the best fit.

Karunaratne Takeaway - Morgan Lyons

What stuck with me was her idea that you should know yourself, and should be able to answer when asked who you are.  That is something I need to think about.  I also thought it was interesting when she said that you should do something you love, when T Rees Shapiro said to take any job you can get. Maybe Bernadine meant once you are well into your career, but it was interesting to compare their different perspectives.

Karutaratne Takeaway- Madison Moore

Bernadine Karutarante is an extremely influential women. Hearing her speak about being one of the first woman and international hires in her field really demonstrated her work ethic. She not only spoke of how making her personal brand the best it could be helped her, but of how it has impacted other people in her field. This only proves how much worth our personal brand and imaging can affect our careers. Coming from an age where our everything we do follows us, it was a big reminder to make sure anything I put out there I would not be embarrassed of if it were to come up in a job interview.
The biggest thing I took away from Karutarante was her steps to reaching your goals. Essentially never limiting your opportunities, and not being afraid to set yourself apart have allowed her to become the successful woman she is now. She impressed upon me the idea to be goal driven, but keep in mind that every experience can help you better your resume, and your personal self. Being able to ask a boss or professor what your strengths and weaknesses are will not only allow you to work on your weaknesses, but to capatilize on your strengths. In doing this you cannot only gain something that will set yourself apart from other applicants, but gain a more clear sense of who you are. And, according to Karutarante, this will more than anything give you the tools to reach your goals.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Karutaratne Takeaway Alex Mahon

Ms. Karutaratne spoke with concision and intrigue with each point that she outlined and detailed. What I got from Ms. Karutaratne was less about the actual things that she said and more in what she demonstrated.  She was so proud of who she is, what she does, and how she got there.  She also spoke in a way that genuinely made me think about what she said and what my own personal goals were instead of just speaking at me. Ms. Karutaratne's points about personal branding resonated with me the most strongly because it is something that we are constantly being told but she made it relevant.  From the time I started to build an internet presence in high school my father constantly told me to be careful what I post saying "imagine whatever you are posting is on the front page of a newspaper, does it make you embarrassed or proud?". On Thursday Ms. Karutaratne explained the real weight of this question and why and how our internet presence can affect our lives positively or negatively.

Karunaratne Takeaway - Mary Elder

The biggest takeaway I got from her speaking was how important it is to come up with a personal brand that is uniquely your own. I think a lot of time people, myself included, get lost in the interview process and overthink about what the employer wants to hear. Instead, we should present ourselves the best we can. Also, I think what she said about agility is very important. It makes sense that we all should be more agile since the world around us is changing so rapidly. Hearing her speak made me want to work on my own agility skills.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Karunaratne Takeaway - Aliya Levinstein

    The greatest thing that I took away from our discussion last Thursday was the Bernadine's idea of the "Big 5."  I believe that the ideas she discussed are crucial to succeeding in any sort of work environment.  They encourage me to do more and be more than just good enough; they inspire greatness.  I think that following the five ideas that she outlines can really make someone stand out in a work environment instead of just being the typical employee. In such a competitive atmosphere, it is crucial to be as marketable as possible.  Presenting my "best self" by identifying with her "Big 5" is something that I am definitely going to consider going forward in my experiences.

Karunaratne Takeaway - Emily Ambach

The advice I found most helpful from Bernadine was that creating an honest personal brand is crucial in today's professional world. We should always strive to present our "best self" and work hard to develop a positive brand that employers will see as a value to their company. With so many young people having a great education and resume, we need to find a way that will set ourselves apart through our brand. Another piece of advice she gave was to accept feedback because it's a critical part in allowing ourselves to grow. Sometimes we have to mess up to get better.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Karunaratne Takeaway - Elisha Brown

 The speaker stressed the importance of agility in today's work environment. When taking on jobs in the future, I will work on my adaptability skills. Her comments on having personal statements when interviewing was kind of intimidating. I should work on that. Like others have mentioned, Karunaratne's tip that we should answer interview questions honestly was insightful.

Bernadine takeaway - Morgan Tripi

The advice Bernadine gave about interviewing was very helpful.  She told us to always answer questions honestly because the interviewers can usually tell if you are lying and just saying what you think they want to hear.  Also, she told us not to be afraid to ask to repeat the question if you are unclear of what they are asking.  It is better to ask for clarification than to ramble about something and sound dumb.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Thursday, March 20

Bernadine Karunaratne, guest speaker. President, U.S. Government Consulting Services at Korn Ferry. Largest search firm in the world. 

-Completed undergrad and grad school at AU (Kogod)
-Came as a foreign student at age 18. 
-Joined public sector section of Gallop - polling. Worked there for 15 years 
-Left there and started at Korn Ferry 
-One of her biggest issues was bridging gap between being a foreign student and living in America 
-All about being able to adapt - “agility” 
-“Never too young to present your best self” 
-Feedback is a gift. Embrace it 
-Fine line when walking along social media: too much information, ect 
-Establish a digital brand 
-Are you responsible? Can you be trusted? Most common client questions 
-VUCA - volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguous. Seen in today’s business environment 
-Successful leader of the future is a different type of leader than today 
-Historical competencies and skill sets must be revisited 
-Have a purpose statement. Be adaptable to change. 
-Graduating students are at a leadership inflection point 

Advice for moving ahead: 
Examine your career goals and motivations: what gets you up in the morning, what energizes you 
Consider what experiences you need to pursue your goals 
Consider what competencies you need to develop  

BIG 5: 
Put relationships first
Be yourself, believe in yourself 
Take others with you 
Lead with gratitude 
Do the ordinary, extraordinarily well 
Stay true to who you are, you can never go wrong. 

-Tyler Berg

Bernadine Karunaratne takeway - Tyler Berg

In all honesty, I found her very inspiring. Maybe that's just because I personally enjoy things like motivational speaking but I truly enjoyed listening to what she had to say. It could be a little repetitive sometimes, but I particularly found her advice for "moving ahead" helpful. 

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Guest Speaker

Today's guest speaker was very charming and inspiring, but to be honest she stressed me out. Maybe that's what I needed to get the ball rolling with my professional career.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Thursday, March 6

-       Differences between Journalism/PR (see handout)
o   Journalism: report the facts from both sides, not required to report facts directly as presented at press release, typically working with one medium
o   PR: Represent the interests of the client & advocate for client, “at the mercy” of the journalist, work with many different types of media
-       Differences between advertising/PR
o   Advertising: paid for, more stylized, more control over presentation
o   Press releases: more factual, less control over presentation
-       4 terms:
o   Advertising
o   Promotion
o   Publicity
o   PR
-       PR duties
o   Newsletters
o   Press releases
o   Plan events
o   Serve as spokesperson
o   Crisis management
-       Press release formatting (see handout)
o   Headline vs. Title: Headline uses active verb (that’s what we want)
o   Short and punchy headline, do not capitalize prepostitions
o   Don’t be unintentionally funny!
o   No need for attribution, you are the spokesperson/official
o   Avoid “psychic distance”
o   One sentence lead, no more than 2 sentence paragraph
o   End with – 30 -

- Megan Yoder

Shapiro Takeway

I learned that there are many events that could lead to a job or opportunity.  Being at the bottom of the barrel isn't as bad as we think, because being low could lead to something better than we imagine.  We should make everything we can out of lowly internships or barely paying jobs cause we never know would could happen.

Shapiro Takeaway - Katerina Pappas

I had a wonderful time listening to Shapiro’s stories and adventure into becoming a journalist, but I found one thing incredibly terrifying about journalism.  It took a terrible event in his college career for him to have his “big break” and to a point it could have been any hard working and hands on college student who wrote the story, it just happened to be him.  All I kept thinking about as he spoke to us was that journalism is such an interest based atmosphere.  Of course it takes talent and writing skills and interest in the field—but to make it in journalism, it comes down to being at the right time and the right place and knowing what the right time is and where the right place is-- and then on top of that, hoping people care.  As a college student who is already on her third major and is trying to figure out what her path in life is, I found this disconcerning but also very, very valuable to know. Although my view on journalism became pessimistic, I was also inspired by his energy and vigor when it came to his writing process and his stories.  I saw a new side of journalism by talking to someone in the field and it was very intriguing. I really enjoyed having him visit our class!

Shapiro Takeaway - Grace Ries

Last week I realized that journalism is highly confrontational. I'm not sure why that hadn't resonated with me before someone had to tell me in person, but this is how it went. My main takeaway from the talk was that you have to be a fighter, you have to be hungry, to be successful in the industry. The winner in the end is the one that produces the story with the most accurate and relevant information. Getting that information takes confrontation. I need to work on accepting confrontation as a necessary and helpful interaction and not as intimidating conflict. I can't let people walk all over me when I need to confront them. If one is uncomfortable with confrontation, then maybe they won't be happy in this industry.

Shapiro takeaway - Michelle Chong

The biggest thing I took away from hearing Taylor Rees Shapiro speak was that no matter how boring the assignment sounds - there is always at least something interesting in the story, if you dig deep enough. Another advice of his that resonates to me was to work harder than anybody else. No matter which university you graduated from, the harder you work the better the outcome. I really enjoyed hearing him speak, he is very relatable and was brutally honest about what the journalism industry is actually like.

Shapiro Take Away - Alexandra Mahon

I was most impressed by Taylor’s ultimately optimistic approach to all of his career endeavors.  He made a hopeful journalist’s nightmare of writing obituaries in a local paper into a search for finding the lost story behind everyone’s name.  Being able to write one of a kind stories (that just happened to be obituaries) about snack inventors or cold war veterans not only made him love his job but they got him noticed.  His passion for turning the mundane into something interesting or radical really stuck with me, especially when he spoke from the perspective of a confused and unsure college student.  Taylor’s message to me was this: what’s not important is knowing what you want to do but rather doing whatever it is well, with passion and brazen self-assurance.
I realized that often people fall into careers they didn't previously expect they would. He never expected to be a journalist. Sometimes its by chance or a good connection, and sometimes something important happens that you feel you must be a part of, like in the case of Shapiro.

Shapiro Takeaway - Gabriela Berrios

My takeaway from T. Rees Shapiro's talk was that one must always be on the lookout for opportunities. Even though what happened in Virginia Tech was a tragedy, he somehow used it to his advantage. I also liked his approach towards interviewing people, especially those that are mourning a loss. I really liked his technique of first talking about his or her life and then talking about the loss. I also liked how relatable he is. He talked to us like if we were little children but as college students. 

Shapiro Takeaway - Mary Elder

I learned a lot from hearing Taylor speak. However, one of the biggest takeaways I got from it was how aggressive the journalism field is. It is common to hear about how competitive the job market is, but it is hard to conceptualize it unless you have heard it from someone who has been through it. I never realized how much of a "shark" a person has to be. His talk changed my outlook on how I should see the jobs in the journalism field and what I have to do to get there. 

Shapiro Takeaway- Madison Moore

The biggest thing I took away from Shapiro's talk was that you always have to be prepared to take the most out of whatever situation you are in. Whether it was facing a tragedy in his own community, to being a copy aid and working his way into reporting, Shapiro took any opportunity he was presented and ran with it. He really left me with a sense that every story your covering has the potential to be a huge step in your career, if you can put in the work to make it that way. As a college student still figuring my life plan out Shapiro is incredibly inspiring, demonstrating that you do not have to have your whole life planned out to be successful, but simply be ready to take the chance when you need to.

Shapiro Takeaway - Tyler Berg

The biggest thing I took away from Taylor's thoughts last class was his relaxed disposition and his enjoyment of his job. The fact that he started off as a typical college student like the rest of us - not knowing what he wanted to do professionally - made me feel a little better about not having a very direct career plan at the moment. His passion for turning the traditionally boring and dry obituaries into more interesting stories emphasized the importance of taking advantage of every opportunity you have. Clearly, doing exactly that helped him climb to where he is now.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Shapiro Takeaway - Isabelle Caplan

I was surprised at how Taylor made the best out of his job writing obituaries. If I had dreams of being a journalist but was stuck writing obituaries, I'd probably be very frustrated and unhappy at first; but Taylor got to write one-of-a-kind stories, about snack inventors, for example, that were interesting and gave him writing experience. It sounded like Taylor really made the most of his time as an obit writer and has begun to climb the ladder, despite starting out as a copier.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Shapiro Takeaway - Aliya Levinstein

The most important thing that I took away from our discussion with Taylor was that you cannot be discouraged by being refused job positions, not just in journalism, but in any field. Taylor started off very low at the Washington Post and worked incredibly hard to get to where he is today.  I learned that motivation and setting yourself apart are crucial to being successful in your own field.  The idea that hard work will set you apart from the crowd is something that I always knew, but seeing a real example of that in Taylor reinforced that idea for me.  Taylor's discussion was very insightful and led me to think about a lot of things that I never had before.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Shapiro Takeaway - Emily Ambach

My greatest takeaway was how Shapiro emphasized the need to be cutthroat and willing to work as hard as you can in order to be successful. He mentioned multiple times that the Harvard student, though accomplished, won't always be better than you, especially if you show how much more you want the position. This is relevant to our generation because there are tons of people out there that are qualified for the position, so we have to be able to show how much more determined we are than the rest.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Shapiro Takeaway

One of the biggest things I took away from Taylor's talk is the freedom of reporters to go out and find stories. I was surprised to hear that he rarely gets story assignments. While that makes his job more difficult in that he has to actively seek out new, it also offers him a certain level of autonomy that I find exciting in the workplace.