Journalism Trip: A Day at The Record

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Journalism Trip: A Day at The Record

T. DiGeronimo

T. DiGeronimo

T. DiGeronimo

Journalism students (Left to right): Shamel Dishack, Katherine Interiano, Rocco Recoraro, Kaitlyn Melendez, Jamie Lessner, Editorial Page Editor Alfred Doblin, Sara Inglese, James Addie, Ryan Lemaire, Jesse Dorfman, Cielle Tousignant, Jason Bryant

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Journalism students and members of the Journalism Club at Hawthorne High School had a valuable educational experience at The Record newspaper,on October 16.  The students had an eye-opening encounter filled with journalism tips that the reporters, editors, and writers gave them. During this wonderful opportunity, the students got to meet and discuss writing with competent news people. As soon as the doors of the elevator opened, the students were warmly welcomed by Joe Dziublenski, Production Copy Editor.

Dziublenski showed the class the ins and outs of the newsroom. They got to see where the staff made their magic; how writers got their inspirations for news stories, and best of all, students got to sit in on the daily morning meeting. Dziublenski made them feel very at-home with his lively attitude and his welcoming persona.

The first speaker was Kara Yorio, Staff Writer. Yorio has been a features writer for four years, and she writes in the Better Living section of the newspaper.  Before she began writing features, she covered sports and entertainment. Yorio told the class that they should write about what sparks their interests and what they feel fuels their own excitement. Another important tip that the students brought home with them from Yorio’s discussion was the importance of facts; all facts must be checked and re-checked and must be backed-up with proof.

The next speaker the young journalists met was a state house reporter. Melissa Hayes is a political reporter who covers Governor Christie’s every move. She walked the class through an educational talk about deadlines. Hayes directed the conversation towards the consequences a journalist could face if a deadline is not met. For instance, the reporter has found herself writing midnight articles for breaking new stories. She also talked about deadlines and balancing the rest of her journalistic duties. The reporter writes about an article a day, if not, more. Considering she is a state house pressperson, she told the class of aspiring journalists that she tries to avoid taking sides when it comes to politics.

The morning news meeting allowed the students to watch how the head editor, Martin Gottlieb, leads the writers into what the newspaper of “tomorrow” (the next issue) will look like. He tells them what is quality work and what needs to be altered for future articles. For the students to watch this take place was very informative and a great insight into how an everyday paper is published.

Next on the day’s schedule was Editorial Page Editor, Alfred Doblin. He talked about how an editorial is an institutional voice, and ways on how to surprise the readers. Also, Doblin explained that columnists keep their writing personal but detached from themselves. Doblin said, “If you want to talk about yourself, get a diary.” The way Doblin sees it, is that if you don’t change someone’s mind, then writing is a waste of time. Also, being respectful and keeping your boundaries is very important to the editor as well. Like he said, “If you’re going to make waves, be sure that you know how to swim.”

Finally, the journalism class ended their visit with the web editor at The Record, Sean Oates. This department was very entertaining because they learned a lot about social media and web design. The website is updated 24 hours a day. “Why wait?” is the approach they take to surpass other newspaper sites. Getting in touch with editors and photographers is the first step to receiving new content that should go online. Oates stated, “With the web, the deadline is like now… all the time.” The Digital News Group, or DNG, only need about two paragraphs to start a story online. Then, they wait for a more in-depth story. Before the full report comes out, social media is the way to go. Twitter and Facebook are the main boosters for these articles. Oates metaphorically states, “The reporters and editors are like the rock stars with their instruments and we’re the amplifiers.”

The trip was an overall success. It was educational and informative. The students absorbed a new sense of what being a journalist is really about in terms of sacrifice and dedication.

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