The Alcorn State University Mass Communications Department hosted its annual Media Day in the Gold Room of the Clinton Bristow Jr. Dining Hall on March 29, 2017 from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm. This year’s theme was “Media Matters: Striving for Accuracy.” The event featured panelists from various media outlets around the state who gave students tools for success in the field of broadcast journalism.
Guest panelists included Therese Apel, Breaking News Reporter for the Clarion Ledger in Jackson, Mississippi; Roosevelt “Kip” Smith, Chief Photographer at WJTV Channel 12 in Jackson, Mississippi; Jackie Hampton, Publisher of the Mississippi Link newspaper in Jackson, Mississippi; Derek Rogers, General Manager of WCBI-TV in Columbus, Mississippi; Karla Hooten, Mississippi Association of Broadcasters (MAB); Todrick Johnson, CEO/Founder of Epitome Magazine; and Brittney Noble-Jones, Week Day Co-Anchor at WJTV Channel 12 This Morning in Jackson, Mississippi.
Students, faculty and staff listened to the panelists as they gave advice on how to be successful in the media industry. The event was broken down into two sessions for students to listen to panelists Therese Apel and Roosevelt “Kip” Smith discuss the roles in their day-to-day experiences and how they handle those challenges. Apel led Session A which focused on finding the right place and time for the best story angle while Smith led Session B which focused on how to use video to tell compelling stories. Both sessions emphasized to the students how to find angles that other reporters may not.
“It’s easy to write a story and turn it in but being a good reporter is more than that,” Apel said. “It’s about going the extra length to create something people will want to read.”
Lunch was served before Keynote Speaker Todrick Johnson spoke to the audience. Once at the podium he emphasized for every student to follow their dreams. Johnson stated, “If you want to succeed, the first thing you need is a vision.” He ended his speech by telling the audience to read Proverbs 29:18 which states, “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy he is.”
Awards and special recognition were given to the guests as well as the students for their hard work and dedication in the Mass Communications Department. Dr. Cynthia Scurria, Chairperson of English, Mass Communications and Foreign Languages, and Dr. Babu Patlolla gave the closing remarks and thanked everyone for their participation in the event.