Behind the Scenes of News Broadcasting

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Behind the Scenes of News Broadcasting

By Athenia Ibragimov and Milana Shindelman

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The Journalism and TV classes went to MSNBC and FOX News studios on May 21, 2019  to get a closer look at what really happens behind the scenes of these major news networks.

Between the two classes, there were a total of forty students who went on the trip to NYC.

First, the students went to MSNBC and got to meet Michael Del Moro, a producer who showed them around the studio of the hit talk show Morning Joe. Then, they watched a brief segment of the show while it was live on air. The TV class got to see how the show was filmed and how the producers worked while on air. After the show, the students had a brief interview with Mike Barnicle, senior contributor and Willie Geist, who co-anchors the show along with Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough.

The students were able to ask them questions, ranging from their personal successes to advice they would give students for their future careers.

Both said that the journalism industry is an ever-changing environment with more platforms opening up for job opportunities. They also agree that to be authentic is a key to success.

“There are so many opportunities in this building alone,” said Geist, referring to 30 Rockefeller Plaza which hosts many MSNBC shows as well as The Today Show, “the field is wide open.”  Geist, who also appears weekly on Sunday Today with Willie Geist.  Geist grew up in Ridgewood before working for CNN as a producer for Sports Illustrated.

“Everyone has a story to tell,” said Barnicle.  “The key to being a good journalist is to listen to what people have to say,” he added.  Barnicle is a senior contributor to Morning Joe and has had a lengthy career in both print and broadcast journalism.

Both journalists, who often discuss sports briefly on the show which is largely political by nature, said that sports give viewers, and them, a much-needed respite from the daily news cycle.

Executive producer Alex Korson also gave advice to the students, explaining that they should keep an open mind in life after high school.

“You don’t want to study eight years on something you don’t want to do. Figuring what you don’t want to do is just as much important as figuring out what you do what to do,” he says. “You have to be hungry and present and ready for that shift,” he adds.

Following the visit to MSNBC, the students walked over to Fox News where Sean McGinnis toured them through the various different sets including those of popular morning show Fox and Friends and Shephard Smith. In addition, the students got to explore the control room, observing the mechanics and technological work done behind the scenes.

“I think it’s important for students to see people in broadcast journalism on the job so they can get an idea of what the career is like,” explains English and Journalism teacher Donna Del Moro who, along with James Hoogstrate, TV Production teacher, was in charge of the trip. “It’s invaluable to meet with on-air personalities and to get some advice from them regarding careers in journalism,” she adds.

“It gives students a unique perspective of what is in a studio. Students got to see the real-life view of what they can do in the outside world. So far, we have gone for the past four years and we plan to go as long as out contacts say there,” says TV teacher James Hoogstrate.

“It was an eye-opening experience that helped me understand the work that is in the field. It also showed me the type of work that I would like to do in the future,” comments Jade He, junior.

“It was super cool to see Morning Joe and to get a tour of the studios and how everything is laid out. These jobs seem very intense but overall it was a very informative trip,” said Jared Shiffman, senior.  

In the past, students have gone to Good Morning America, The View, and Fox News. The classes were allowed to be part of the studio audience of Good Morning America and The View.