Last week my internship journey led me to meeting Mayor Sessoms of Virginia Beach, learning how to help victims of identity theft have a voice, interviewing neighbors of an abandoned house, and much more. I followed Ava Hurdle, Andy Fox, and Anne McNamara sharing the adrenaline rush hunting down stories with them. In a week, I feel like I have learned a second college education that is not text book driven, but hands on. The amount of knowledge that I have gained from these talented reporters and also the camera men is incredible! I truly enjoy hard news stories and learning how a story unfolds with asking the right questions. I also have had the chance to do another stand up ! I am thankful that all of my questions do not annoy the reporters and camera men and it is awesome to have conversations about common interests about news with reporters. I have learned the ettiquette of being a reporter that will help me in my future. This ettiquette includes how to ask the right questions to political authorities learned from Ava, how to get victims to talk on camera to hear their story and also be aware of your surroundings by Andy, and how to be compassionate towards stories but don’t let your emotions become too involved by Anne. All reporters and camera men have had great advice for me and I continue to love working in the newsroom now working with the night news crew. I’ll keep you posted!
The past two weeks I interned with the Hampton Roads Show. The first week I shadowed Producer Susan and the second week I floor directed with Stephanie. I enjoyed both weeks and loved working with the hosts. Floor directing was very intense and once again stressed the importance of paying attention and being alert. I looked over run downs, helped guests with their microphones, and called out the times of breaks. I enjoyed working with the set and the guests. The show primarily supports advertising local businesses, work that matches my experience in the sales department internship. The same day, after the production of the Hampton Roads Show, I had time to follow reporters in the field. My trips included going to a firework barge, the planetarium, the Boys and Girls Club of Newport News, and most rewarding, watching the Face of Fox, Tracie hand out the Hampton Roads Hero Award. The award was given to a helpful brother from an appreciative sister battling cancer. It was emotional but inspiring. Also, I had a great time working on tapes with intern, Caroline. The Hampton Roads Show is a great way to connect with the local community and showcase local businesses. I am glad I had the chance to help with this production. I even had the chance to begin editing my own package! Now I am in my Morning News internship and will be posting tomorrow about my first two days!
These past two weeks after my web internship have been even more of an eye opener. Last week I interned in production and this week in sales. Before exploring these two departments, I was oblivious to how they collaborate. In production, the news station is trying to sell the product, also known as WAVY 10 News. I did not understand this concept until working in sales. To make this collaborative effort make sense, let me begin describing my production experience.
Taking place in the control room, my first day I shadowed Reba Bloom who was directing the 11:00PM newscast. I also got to meet Jim Falvey who directed the 10PM. Reba taught me how to mark up a rundown, meaning marking cues for during the show. She also explained all the different televisions in the control room, there are plenty! Reba stressed that her key role in the control room was to be the big picture person and execute the rundown, which is made throughout the day by producers, graphic designers and reporters.
My second day I was in the audio room. Here, I learned how to mark the rundown for audio means, which entails marking different cues similar to what I did with the director. I also learned the audio sound board and executed the weather music! The night included changing out batteries for microphones for the anchors, turning microphones on and off during a show, and changing the volume of the show depending on who was speaking. I previously had no idea that audio was controlled on-air.
Wednesday was my teleprompt day. I learned that subtitles come from the teleprompt. In the control room, I had the chance to both shadow and actually work the teleprompt for Tom Schaad. After the show, I was fortunate enough to have the chance to actually read the teleprompt at the anchor desk!
Next, on Thursday, I learned how to read the rundown in the graphics department. There is much preparation that goes on throughout the day with creating backgrounds and making the newscasts look eye-catching. Using multiple televisions, I learned that different software programs on the computer channel through the different televisions for organization purposes. There is also a creative side to creating the different backgrounds in order to display the stories in its truest form.
Last, on Friday I learned how to work the cameras in the recording room. It was neat to see the anchors at work while learning the different cameras and how the cameras can be robotically moved around. I learned terms such as MCU (middle close up), and OTS (over the shoulder graphic). By the end of the week, production came full circle to me. Everyone depended on everyone while on-air. The producers gave the director the information, the camera man is responsible for getting the right shots for the graphic animations people to place templates and words by the head of the correct anchor speaking, the teleprompter kept track of the right time for the anchors to talk about a story, the audio person made sure these stories were not too loud or quiet for the home audience. It was pure production.
All of this was displayed on the rundown in simple cues! Every key person in the control room had to read the rundown differently, which fascinated me. Also the thought of a control room sounds stressful, but to my surprise everyone was laid back. Furthermore, the control room staff had been working together for years and it was a great team to be around. The most important rule of the control room is to be alert.
As I mentioned in the beginning, WAVY 10 is a product. I worked in sales this last week and greatly enjoyed working with Christina Close, Research Director. At first I felt intimidated with sales because I am not a business major; however Christina, also an English major, reassured me that there is more logic than math in the sales department. Our first day, Christina gave me an orientation of the potential clients the sales department works with and the goals behind the department. I increased my knowledge understanding the WAVY and WVBT dayparts and HUTs (number of households watching television), shares (percent of HUT), ratings (viewers), and PUTS (people using television). After I learned the basics the first day, I gradually felt part of the office working on projects, attending meetings, and understanding how negotiations work with advertising companies.
On Tuesday, I worked on filling out rating percentages on Microsoft Excel sheets. Working with Neilson, a company that measures data and sells it to Lin Media, I realized while working, you draw conclusions from your percentages and outcomes. I also created graphs to show why WAVY is market worthy. The work was greatly rewarding.
On Wednesday, I cold called local restaurants, asking them if they would like to advertise their restaurant on the Hampton Roads Show by having a cooking segment. After, I was lucky to be interning the week of SWOT. The meeting consisted of looking at ratings and potential new shows for the fall. New shows mean that new potential advertising companies will be interested in negotiating commercial time with WAVY 10. This is where demographics are used. For example, a male schewed advertisement would be beneficial to a football program. Therefore, the sales representatives keep their eyes peeled for male company clients. The meeting showed the success of the sales team, the weaknesses, the opportunities, and the estimates. After the meeting, I began researching ways to promote Toyota.
On Thursday, I attended an Advertising Federation of Hampton Roads luncheon at McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood in Virginia Beach. Having Toyota in mind, I listened to the key speaker, Roger Phelps, Promotional Communications Manager for STIHL Inc. on how to better work with clients during business marketing negotiations. Phelps supported the “Independent We Stand” campaign throughout is spectacular presentation. Supporting local businesses, he explained how to make connections with local businesses and keep a relationship with them as a client. The luncheon gave me a new view on marketing, sell what your company stands for.
Today I attended two meetings, one discussing web performance and another promoting the product of a company. Also, I finished a PowerPoint project with Christina that was meant for sales representatives to show potential clients. This PowerPoint included why the client should partner with WAVY 10 by means of graphs and statistics found in the SWOT. Also, I looked at the ratings from Fourth of July last year with Christina. I had many questions today about supply and demand and Christina answered them perfectly. I feel like I am meshing with sales, but now I change to a new exciting internship with the Hampton Roads Show net week!
OpSail was such a success! Thursday and Friday night were busy nights clipping video for OpSail. I was glad that I had practice with clipping video at a fast pace. Along with focusing on publishing OpSail broadcasts on the Web, I had the chance to sit in the producing room for about 15 minutes. Although I was used to the newsroom being extremely busy, the producing room was even more intense. It was awesome to see how everyone contributes to the newscasts in all different ways, from pulling scripts to audio. It was great meeting the producers and observing them under pressure. They all enforced positive attitudes and remained calm. Along with watching the producers hold composure with a heavy amount of live coverage, I caught on to their lingo. Using quick terms made the fight against the clock easier. Executing a broadcast is a prism of hard work creating a spectrum of magnificent detailed work of everyone in the Wavy building. It is extremely fun working with such talented, creative, and innovative people.
On Saturday, I volunteered to work the Wavy tent at OpSail and had the time of my life. I met MORE Wavy workers, the media crew. The Wavy team is huge and everyone I have met is friendly and easy to talk to. Along with interns, Jessica Dawson and Nicole Mandell, we worked as a team within the Wavy team stuffing Wavy gift bags, handing out chips, foam swords, and paper fans to the people waiting in line to spin the prize wheel. It was great getting to know the other interns! Working the tent, I talked to the Wavy fans and felt complete bliss. Getting to know people and how much they appreciate Wavy made me think, this is why I want to do this, this is where I am supposed to be.
Today, Monday, I have transitioned from evening Web to morning Web. It definitely has a different vibe than evening Web. I worked with Jane and Jess today publishing multiple Associated Press stories. The morning Web is different because most of the stories are brand new. The day is beginning and a sense of urgency is more defined. The stories deal more with breaking news and day stories. After sitting in on a staff meeting, I realized it takes skills in innovation and collaboration to have successful stories. I truly believe every part of my personality has been highlighted in the newsroom. My writing has grown as well. Constantly reading reports and posting stories taught me how to become more precise and use less words in my writing, cutting out unnecessary words. Even though I feel like I ask a lot of questions sometimes, I have observed Wavy employees not being afraid to ask for help or assistance. Questioning is not a bad thing, it makes one learn. Internship Coordinator, Stephanie Cooke was right when saying, “Be something bigger than yourself” in this internship experience. As a violinist, I have heard this concept as “you need different instruments to be in perfect harmony to create a great sound.” The Wavy attitude and determination creates a larger than life news team and that is why Wavy 10 is the number one most watched news in Hampton Roads. Tomorrow Jess is going to advance my Web internship and I am excited! I am grateful.
Today was another wonderful day in the office! Leaving the newsroom, it struck me that I have learned so much in the last few days and am continuing to advance. Today I learned how to connect video to online stories. I continued publishing Associated Press stories and clipping video, finding myself to have become quicker at the tedious procedures. Also, becoming familiar with wired Associated Press stories have made me able to determine which stories are worthy of publishing. While working hard, I am getting to know others around me and I love their enthusiasm.
Yesterday I had a great session absorbing information involving posting news stories online, editing the stories, and adding pictures and video to the stories. My session today was even better. I applied what I learned yesterday to today and actually published stories online! By the end of the day, I understood how to clip video and send the video to YouTube and also post Associated Press stories to the Wavy 10 website. Also, I created URL’s for the videos and connected them to Wavy records. Having the help of Rachel, we worked together to accomplish tasks. Teamwork and communication skills were existent. I also enjoyed talking to the friendly Wavy 10 employees throughout the newsroom. After completing my task while adding creativity to my work, I left the newsroom feeling accomplished. The video below is an example of what I did today.
After orientation last week, I left wide-eyed and inspired. My dream is to become a journalist. As I entered the newsroom, it felt like the perfect fit for me. I realized that my personality and skills matched the environment I saw. Tonight was my first night of the web internship. I truly felt like a sponge absorbing the information Rachel was teaching me. Rachel agreed with me when I mentioned how web involved stating the facts but also adding a personal touch through writing. I was thrilled that Rachel shared the same passion for writing as me. Tomorrow I will be helping her cut videos for the Wavy 10 website and begin writing Associated Press stories. Day one was amazing, filled with meeting new friendly people and learning how much teamwork is involved in the newsroom. I can not wait to see what day two will bring!