Category Archives: Blog

Greene’s legacy fulfilled

Coordinators and volunteers
Greene Team volunteers Briana Finneran, Rebecca Anzel, Nicole Siciliano and Frank Posillico stand in the newsroom with Institute Coordinators Zachary Dowdy, Cathrine Duffy and Wasim Ahmad after finishing www.greenegazette.com on Friday, July 25, 2014.
Being a member of the Greene Team has always been a privilege for journalists — in the days when Bob Greene headed the investigations unit at Newsday and over the past six years, when high school journalists have taken part in this program named in his honor.

Each summer, Greene Team members have embraced the ideals Bob held so dear: honest, thorough reporting; hard work and tenacity in the service of the public good.

We never said it would be easy. It’s not. Bob was one of the toughest and beloved editors in American journalism. He had high standards because he cared about his reporters and his community. The program founded in his name must live up to the same ideals.

We did say that this work could be rewarding beyond measure and that some of the young journalists who work alongside us — students of Bob’s methods and standards — would be changed forever.

We were impressed with this year’s Greene Team members who rose up to the challenge. Once again, Bob would be proud.

- Zack, Cathrine and Wasim

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Making movies and reflections

Day 5 (Thursday): I finally got to edit a video! All week I have been waiting patiently to finally do what I came for. I’m pretty happy with the final product so if you’re reading this you should check it out.

Colin-interviewing
The Dream Team (Collin, Laura, Lea and I) working on our sports story. Photo by Wasim Ahmad

I talked with Rebecca Anzel, editor of The Statesman. I was happy to hear she thought my video was very professional. I love it when hard work pays off. Following a long day of working on our projects all the girls stayed up till 2 a.m., which has become a regular routine this week.

Lisa Angell and Kayla Aponte sleeping. Photo Cred: Hanna Da'Mes
Kayla and I catching up on sleep (since we don’t sleep at night). Photo Cred: Hanna Da’Mes

We hung out in the lounge for a few hours and attempted to play BS and Duck, Duck, Goose with the math camp staying in our building. When the conference assistants eventually kicked us out of the lounge, all the girls talked and hung out, and of course played Cards Against Humanity again. I never thought such a unique group of people would be able to get along and bond so closely within just one short week. It is going to be sad to say goodbye on Saturday.


Day 6 (Friday): Leaving is getting kind of sad. Although I am excited to go home, sleep in my bed, use the bathroom in private, see my family and friends and eat good food, I am going to miss everyone here. I feel like I have made some great friendships over the past week.

Lisa Angell and Jacqueline Napolitano practice their broadcast skills in the School of Journalism's broadcast studio on Wednesday, July 23, 2014. Photo by Wasim Ahmad.
Jacqueline and I in the broadcast studio. Photo by Wasim Ahmad

We just had a family pizza party and reflected on the program. Looking back, I had a great experience and wouldn’t have done it any different. Although at the moment I don’t see myself pursuing a career in journalism, I do think everything I’ve learned here will help me in life. Now I understand the demanding life of a journalist and respect them for their dedication to their careers.

I have so many great memories with unforgettable people. I have learned photography and improved my writing skills as well as developed an eye for news broadcasting, which will not only help me in my broadcast class but also in my future in film.

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The Greene Team #neverforget. Photo by Wasim Ahmad

To my fellow “journalists”: I love you all and hope that you reach your goals. I wish you all luck in college and pursuing your careers, in or out of journalism. I hope we have a reunion and hang out on the regular. It is because of all of you that I had such a fantastic experience here, so thank you. It has been an amazing week.

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Final thoughts, final feelings and final rants

I can’t believe today is the last day and tonight would be my last night in a dorm that has no AC. I’m just happy I don’t have to wake up at 6:30 a.m. tomorrow. I leave for North Carolina on Sunday, and I’m afraid to get on plane since Malaysia Flight 17. I’d rather drive to North Carolina than fly.

My whole experience was rather good, but my feet are so sore every time we walk somewhere. We all finish our stories all before 11 a.m.. I’m very proud of my team. Now we can finally relax.

I’m looking forward to playing games and taking naps. Hopefully tonight we’re going to the film festival to see a foreign film. I’m just happy we’re not doing anymore work. I’m happy I came here to the Greene Team, but it’s been very overwhelming week just for me.

Hearing these wonderful stories about my grandfather brings back great memories that I don’t discuss a lot. I didn’t know we were going to discuss so much about my grandfather. I shouldn’t have worn so much mascara.

Overall I had a good experience, but it was tiring. I would get back to the dorms around 10-10:30 p.m. and be in bed by 11:30 p.m. Wake up was at 6:15 a.m.-6: 30 a.m. and we’ve started working around 8 a.m. If I had to be up by 7 a.m. and work around 8:30 a.m. and be in the dorms by 8 p.m., then I wouldn’t be so tired.

 

Anyway Thanks for reading my blogs and hearing me rant.

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A day of writing and work

As the week nears a close, work on The Greene Gazette has been chugging right along. Yesterday was devoted to newsroom work: calling sources, working on videos and writing, writing, writing.

workin'
A screenshot of some of the work I’m doing.

I had the opportunity to go into the sound booth and record the tracks that will play over our broadcast piece on new campus cop cars. Being in there was both super cool and super weird—does anyone’s recorded voice actually sound that way in real life? I’m concerned.

(Funny enough, my family tried to FaceTime while I was in the booth and got a quick tour of the sound system and downstairs newsroom before I had to get back to work. So really, the day was filled with writing and a quick update on why my parents should not have bought a huge sound system for my brother.)

I also had the opportunity to get the profile I’d written on Reid, edited by Newsday copy editor Goodwin Anim. The experience was so valuable, since he really broke down what I did right in addition to what needed to be fixed.

It was a serious and authentic newsroom today—the clacking of keys sounding throughout.

cue "Getcha Head in the Game" from High School Musical
Cue “Getcha Head in the Game” from High School Musical

I actually managed to finish my written assignments relatively early in the evening and was able to leave the newsroom to get “man on the street” interviews with the help of Frank Posillico, an online photo editor for the New York Daily News.

That trip was definitely the highlight of the day. I got to explore the campus a bit and hear more about the field from Frank. That late in the evening, most students weren’t milling around the library and lounge, but we were able to get two pretty good interviews (though most people we asked turned us down…hmph).

photo 2
Featured Here: People Who Know How to Get Interviews from Randoms

(The last student interviewed gave such a perfect soundbite, it was like a hallelujah chorus started playing when he spoke.)

It was a great little trip around campus—which, as I’ve noted in nearly every blog post, is really so pretty—and I learned a lot talking to Frank.

The campus is literally so pretty -- I can't say that enough. (Also, I took this rather decent picture, thanks John Williams' class!)
The campus is literally so pretty—I can’t say that enough. (Also, I took this rather decent picture myself, thanks to John Williams’ class!)

Back in the newsroom, it was time for my piece to be edited in preparation for publication. Certainly a valuable experience in journalistic form and proper style, but I don’t think I have it in me to be a real-deal journalist, seeing as every time a sentence I liked was cut, I gave a little internal scream of “nooooooo!”

the workstation~
My work station with two screens, otherwise known as the coolest thing ever.

It’s been a learning experience all around. We’re back at it again today to pull it all together before the site goes live tomorrow, and then it’s off to Stony Brook’s film festival.

Fingers crossed!

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Goodbye forever, Greene Team

The last day being on the Greene Team has snuck up.  It feels like just yesterday I was becoming acquainted with other team members.

The progress I have made in five days is astonishing.  Learning from journalism professionals has made me a better journalist and more interested in blogging.  It has really been an amazing experience overall.  The food was good, an unpopular opinion, the professors were helpful and respectful, and I made lifelong friends with whom I’d love to keep in touch.  Being surrounded by aspiring journalists has been nice because we can talk about our future and interests.  I wish I could do this program again next year, but I hope to come back as a student at Stony Brook University rather than a student on the Greene Team.

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The Greene Team being kooky on the Newsday lawn. Photo credit: Wasim Ahmad

Although I’m sad to leave my friends and professors, I’m excited to go home and teach my friends writing techniques and tips I have learned this week.  Also, I can’t wait to show my parents all my pieces I have been working hard on.  I want to impress my family members and friends with my writing and journalism skills because I want to show them how serious I am about journalism.

Even though I am leaving my new friends, I plan to have reunions with them somewhat frequently.  It’s going to be weird not waking up and getting ready to go out at 7 a.m. on about six hours of sleep with the girls.  Surprisingly, I might actually be a little upset I won’t be waking up so early and working for over twelve hours a day.  I am so passionate about journalism; it doesn’t even feel like one hour.  Time flies and it’s not okay with me.

I know for sure this will not be my last journalistic experience, and hopefully not my last journalistic experience at SBU.  My goal at the beginning of this week was to hone my writing and editing skills.  I think I mastered the skills I wanted to and completed my goal, which makes me feel satisfied and accomplished.

I will miss taking panoramas and asking professor Ahmad if he can make myPhoto on 7-25-14 at 8.11 AM #4 panoramas 3D.  I will miss giving Noelia Vazquez a hard time whenever she spoke.  I will miss taking ugly pictures on Photo Booth with Lisa Angell when we finish our work.  I will miss everything about this program and it’s heartbreaking that I have to leave tomorrow afternoon.  Positively speaking, this experience was life changing and I will use the tools and techniques learned for the rest of my life.  I’d like to thank everyone who made this week fantastic.

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Greene eggs and ham

It’s day four. We got to visit Newsday and cover the Ducks game yesterday. The game itself wasn’t all too great; the Ducks got dominated and the Bridgeport Bluefish won. We aren’t allowed to truly do anything by ourselves here; we usually just get escorted around. But yesterday gave us a taste of freedom as we were allowed to walk through the stadium as we pleased. It gave me a sense of relief, and I’m thankful for that.

The Greene Beans.
The Greene Beans.

The Newsday trip made my day yesterday. We visited the headquarters and got to learn some history behind the company. Did you know Newsday was started by a woman who just wanted to get into the family business? Because I didn’t until yesterday.

Even more so, we talked to a bunch of memorable figures that made me laugh. There was this one lady who talked to us about her job. She eventually started talking about license plates. She was fun though, and kept my attention (which I can’t say about everyone that comes to talk to us). She was wearing slippers and looked very comfortable in her workplace, making her by far my favorite Newsday employee.

Madison’s uncle even got us cool t-shirts. He’s my second favorite. His quirky attitude added to the personality of the trip. It was an enlightening experience, and I enjoyed every minute of it. The bus was nice too; it had air conditioning and comfortable seating. After Newsday, we went off to the Ducks game.

We laughed till we cried.
We laughed till we cried.

We got to the game an hour early, and overall, it wasn’t a bad experience. We had to wait to get into the actual stadium for about 40 minutes. The tickets were cheap ($10), so it was a good investment.

I thought we would be able to watch the game and enjoy ourselves for the whole time. However, when we got there, we were put to work right away. My group worked for the first hour and a half, but we got a little time in the end to actually watch the game. We left around the seventh inning of the game, and didn’t get to see the whole thing. We didn’t even get to see the fireworks show at the end of the game. The last score we saw was 11-1 Bluefish. Nonetheless, the piece of freedom we got was worth it.

Us taking video and a baseball goer in the background.
Us taking video and a baseball goer in the background.

Yesterday was the best day, but I wish we had more time for time for outdoor activities and things that were listed in the program. For example, we got to our dorms at around 10 p.m., but all the fun activities like volleyball start at around 7 p.m..  By the time we get back, everything is finished; we got one game of pool in with the other math campers, but that was it. We also haven’t experienced the film festival yet, so hopefully we, as a group, get to go tomorrow.

This whole week made me realize that I don’t want to pursue journalism as a career. I like writing articles and news stories, but everything else isn’t up my alley. Video editing is tedious and dull, photography isn’t too bad, but not extremely interesting or challenging, and news casting is too stressful. To find out what you love doing, you first have to experience what you don’t. My team, the Greene Beans, consisted of Madison, Hanna and Yardalie (“Yaya”); they keep me smiling throughout the day. They make me laugh, and we find ways to pass the time in the Newsroom when we aren’t doing anything.

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End of an awesome week

Colin Maloney preparing for one of his numerous interviews at the Ducks game.
Colin Maloney preparing for one of his numerous interviews at the Ducks game.

It is the last day of the program, and I cannot believe this is the final blog post I will write. This week has been amazing. I met 18 incredible teenagers who not only share my interest in journalism but also are just incredibly fun, and I will miss them all greatly.

Besides having fun with my fellow campers, this week has been jam-packed with truly unique experiences. I got to participate press conference with Stony Brook’s Athletic Director Shawn Heilbron, learned photography from the Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist John Williams, interviewed cancer survivors and baseball fans, learned how a news broadcast is made and got to see an actual newsroom at Newsday.

The thing I most valued about this program was it made me go outside my comfort zone.  I had to interview complete strangers, which was at first absolute terrifying because working for my school newspaper Tarmac, I usually knew my interview subjects. But after several interviews, I began to relax and really enjoyed conducting the interviews.  Besides the interviewing, I also had to take and edit stills and video, which I had never had to do for my school program. But, doing all these things gave me valuable experience that I hope to use back at the Tarmac.

In closing, I would like to thank to all the professors for all the hard work they did and my fellow Greene Team members for being the funny, creative, and awesome. You guys made the week fly by and I hope to see you all again.

 

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Workplace newsbreak

We’re still in the thick of it in the newsroom, as it is the last workday, but I’m enjoying blogging too much to move right on without some more posting. Sure, I could move right to the final post, but where’s the fun in that?

Waking up this morning was an absolute drag. (The Greene girls gathered last night for a game of Cards Against Humanity—I fell asleep around two in the morning. Oy.) The penultimate night was a ton of fun—we made friends with math camp kids in the lounge (and made a failed attempt to play a huge game of cards) and just generally hanging out with members of the Greene Team.

Despite the super-grogginess, the business and general busy-ness in the newsroom provided a quick jolt of energy—it was out of bed and back into the zone.

This post as a work in progress -- very meta~
This post as a work in progress. Very meta.

My article is all wrapped up after an editing session with professor Duffy and professor Dowdy. In our time at their desk, I learned a lot about journalistic parameters and exactly how a concise, professional article should be written. Now that’s indicative of the program—in just a short part of the day, I took in so much knowledge. With the week ending, I feel like I’ve learned an absolute ton.

After working all morning, we were treated to pizza—real, non-cafeteria pizza—and reflected on the program and our thoughts coming away from it. I’ll save those thoughts for my final sappy post—as I’ve said, my article is finalized.

The Greene Gazette: Visible Progress
The Greene Gazette in progress.

After our delicious-perfect-wonderful lunch—did I mention the pizza was good?  Because the pizza was really, really good—the Greene Team met with Robert Pertusati, senior associate dean of Admissions at Stony Brook. He discussed not only admission to Stony Brook, but things to keep in mind when applying to any college.

It was informative, useful and anxiety-inducing—essentially my thoughts on all college chats—but to talk to a professional on the subject was all the more meaningful.

Gifts to the Greene Program, courtesy of Stony Brook!
Gifts to the Greene Program, courtesy of Stony Brook University!

It’s only three and the newsroom is buzzing—journalism students and Frank Posilico are back to help in the Gazette’s production. My work is done and it’s exciting to watch the process from afar. It’s almost a little nerve-wracking to view and observe, but I can’t wait to see the final product.

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And that’s a wrap

Well, this is it. Today is the last day at the newsroom, the last day at the desk with the really nice dual-screen macs, the last day getting meals at the SAC and never having a seat because we always end up waiting on the biggest line they have.  Today is the last day, but it is the start of a brand new journey for me.

On Wednesday, before Newsday and the Duck’s game, we went to the TV studio and got to do broadcasts, which is what I was waiting for. We have a studio at my school and I always loved going and

Lisa Angell and Jacqueline Napolitano practice their broadcast skills in the School of Journalism's broadcast studio on Wednesday, July 23, 2014. Photo by Wasim Ahmad.
Lisa Angell and I being pretend anchors getting ready for our broadcast. Photo by Wasim Ahmad.

reporting the news for my classmates in school. This was ten times more professional; it was a nicer set with chairs that spin and we had a script and a reporter to interview. The only part I felt most comfortable with was anchoring, and I loved every part of it. I love the rush it gives me while I am up there. Looking at the different cameras and getting sit at the big desk chair made me feel really happy and content.

When you see the same people everyday for a week, you tend to get to know them on personal levels. My roommate (Laura) and I are the definition of fast friends. When we both got accepted into the Greene Gazette, we became friendly in school only because we were accepted into the program. Now I can’t imagine being in the program without her. She is an amazing friend that I will forever know because of my experience here.

If you think we look alike, you wouldn't be the first to think so.
If you think we look alike, you wouldn’t be the first.

This was an unforgettable experience. It was the first time I stayed at a college dorm, the first time I got to use a Mac computer for more time than my dad spends in the Apple store; it was also the first time I met people from Long Island whom I have developed a bond with, that I cannot imagine will fade.

It blows my mind how much has changed since last Sunday. We all came into this barely knowing each other and being scared about how much work we would get, what we would get to do and if we would all get along. I’m not sure when it happened, there wasn’t a certain time where everything changed and we were all friends from strangers. We all became comfortable with each other fast and it was easy.

Here’s to all of you in this program and all of you in this program in the future and in the past. We all have something in common; we all have drive in us to work from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., which was tough, but we got through it.

I want to thank the Greene Team for making my experience here something I will never forget. Thank you to these wonderful professors whom are probably more cranky than us but still manage to teach and teach well. Thank you for this amazing opportunity and for friendships I hope to keep and a week to remember for time and time to come.

Slightly obsessed with this picture and everyone in it.
Slightly obsessed with this picture and everyone in it.
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The end

Last Day on the job

Yesterday was quite the experience. Being in a newsroom for more than ten hours working on multiple projects is stressful, but rewarding. Since I filmed the footage we took at the Ducks game on Wednesday, I had the job of scripting/editing the whole thing. This is really my favorite part of it all. It’s incredible to see everything come together and you end up with such a complete project. Although this process was at times painful and overwhelming, in the end it’s all worth it.

For me, today is more of a relaxed day because I am practically done with my assignments. I think the video came out really good and I’m proud of my team for producing such a cool piece of work. I hope everyone else that sees it likes it as much as I do.

I’m really going to miss all the people I met here. At first, I was hesitant to whether I would click with any of the other students here, but now there is no doubt in my mind these people will be my friends after we leave Stony Brook. Everyone here is so open-minded and ambitious. It’s refreshing to see young people be so passionate about something, while having a blast at the same time.

I also hadn’t seen Reid since freshman year, so reuniting with him has been awesome. It’s weird how even after a long period of time, some friendships can pick up right where they left off. Plus, Lisa is now a homegirl. I really hope all of us hang out after this program and stay connected throughout high school, and even college.

I have learned so much this week that I never thought I would have. Even though some activities weren’t exactly my favorite, in the end they helped me become a more well-rounded journalist.

I’m still not exactly sure if I want to become a journalist. I think I just don’t want to restrict myself to one career just yet. Trying out all these new things has been really beneficial to me. Learning photography with Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer John Williams was such a cool opportunity. I’m excited to take these skills back to Shelter Island’s journalism program.

P.S. Hi Emma if you’re reading this. :)

 

 

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Play ball

I have never been to a ball game…

Nor have I ever had the opportunity to gain private access into one of Long Island’s largest news corporations.

A day full of surreal experiences, visiting Newsday and going out to the Long Island Ducks game was truly a privilege.

Despite the fact that I was practically half-awake on the bus to Newsday and professor Zachary Dowdy had to shake me back to life, a surge of energy sparked through me once I saw the huge building with Newsday written on the side of it in big letters. Once we walked in, we learned about the amazing feats the man we are all here for today accomplished.

Robert W. Greene was winner of the Pulitzer Prize for his work on “The Heroin Trail.” Realizing the magnitude of the prodigious talent one must have in order to get such an award blew me away. As aspiring journalists, we are here to carry on his legend, and looking at his plaque on the wall at Newsday truly put things in perspective.

Moving on to the ball game: although there was only a very brief moment where I actually got to sit down and watch the game, I loved the overall

Play Ball!
The inspiring Newsday Logo reading, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.”
Play Ball!
Visualizing the amazing Greene’s accomplishments in what I would describe to be an experience of a lifetime.

atmosphere of it. I also loved getting stared at for carrying around a six-foot tri-pod and notepad.

As the day wrapped up to an, end I realized that the Greene team had truly hit a home run that night. We got closer than ever.

 

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Mary Kate Guma: multimedia reporter (just kidding)

I sat in the same chair for about ten hours yesterday. It was an exciting time.

In the morning, Sharon and I worked on a story for the website about a 9/11 memorial at Bethpage Ballpark, and at that point, I still had quite a bit of energy, so it really wasn’t unpleasant. Then we met with Bob Herzog one last time so he could edit it, which was actually really nice.

He edited the story without losing the flavor we had created, and everything he said and reworked made sense. I was definitely glad he was a temporary Greene Team member. He was so conversational and friendly, and yet managed to teach us about sports reporting too. I was sad to see him go yesterday.

After the written piece, Sharon and I continued with the story by working on the script for our video clip, and that was and long and tortuous process, let me tell you. Script writing is not as easy as it sounds, though I believe Sharon did have fun recording it in the sound booth.

Then the real work began, sometime around six last night. We started putting the video together, which again, is more complicated than it sounds. I had never used FinalCut before, and though I got the general hang of it, anybody can just throw clips together, arranging them in a virtually pleasing, coherent, concise way is not something I have the hang of yet.

I’m still working on it, though. This morning, Sharon and I are trying to finish off the video. We need to learn how to put “lower thirds” into the video, and just get some general aid and hopefully, we should be done shortly. Fingers crossed!

(Quick update: We’re done! The story is finished and we’ve had pizza for lunch.)

Stony Brook’s Senior Associate Dean of Admissions Robert Pertusati came to speak to us about college which was actually really helpful. I don’t have any clue what I’m doing when it comes to college admissions, so any advice I can get is good advice. And I actually find it kind of exciting. It’s like a giant race, one in which hundreds of thousands of teenagers are running. I’m naturally very competitive, so the idea just kind of appeals to me. Just the idea, though—I don’t think I’ll be crazy about the process of being accepted or denied!

By the way, in case my title gets edited, I just want to make it clear I do not consider myself a skilled multimedia reporter. I have no idea what I’m doing. I’m just following Newsday reporter Lauren Harrison’s advice —Fake it ’til you make it.)

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It’s been real, Greene Team

 

Will definitely miss the photography class
I will definitely miss the photography lessons.

Last night, Professor Wasim and I had a heart to heart. We shared our opinions on journalism and he told me all about his job. We came to an understanding of how we both have different opinions on the field and we respect each other’s differing ones. I am not going to completely rule out journalism as a profession, but I do want to explore other options.

On the way back from working in the newsroom last night, Hanna Da’Mes, Sharon Ahmed, Dan Walocha, Kelly Colligan, Reid Rubio, Kayla Aponte and I played tag as we walked to the dorms. It was a lot of fun, but I thought one of us would trip in the dark—good thing that didn’t happen!

Last day selfies  width=

The CAs were really laid back last night because they let us all hang out in the lounge an hour past our curfew. We hung out with the math kids in the lounge and they were so much fun! They left today, so we are all really going to miss them tonight.

This morning we worked on our video footage and by early afternoon my team and I were all done. I really like how it came out and the four of us worked very well together.

Lunch today was a nice change because we had pizza in a conference room. I was running out of ideas for wrap creations in the cafeteria so that took the pressure off. At lunch it hit us how we are all going to miss each other.  The Greene Team got so close in such a short period of time. I know that we will all stay in touch even when the program ends.

I am looking forward to seeing the movie tonight at the Film Festival. I think it will be a wonderful way to end the camp with all of us hanging out together.

I hope that the friendships I made this week last for a long time. I met some really amazing people and I will miss each and every one of them.

It’s been real, Greene Team!

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Click, click, click

The Greene Beans team
The Greene Beans team

If anyone had asked me to accompany them to any sporting event two years ago, I probably would have laughed it off and rejected them. That is because it’s not my thing. However, going to the Ducks game last night opened my eyes to different things.

We arrived at the game an hour and half early with no story to write about. My teammates (Hanna, Dan and Madison) and I called ourselves “The Greene Beans.” We bonded to shoot videos, take pictures and interview people. Though it was nerve-racking to ask people their experience during the game since we didn’t want to be rejected—or get yelled at—it turned out to be experience that I could never forget.

I loved going to different places at the game and snapping pictures of the teams that were playing, the audience and the youth baseball leagues. Some children were so eager to be on the camera, which motivated me more. Unfortunately, we couldn’t interview all of them.

After nearly an hour and half walking around with our equipment in hand, we finally stopped to have some fun. We were later joined by Reid Rubio and Noelia Vazquez, bought tickets to go in the Ducks bouncy house and relax. This definitely made my night.  Overall, I enjoyed myself and I wish I could do it more often.

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Can work be relaxing?

 

Yaya, Madi, Dan, Me
Yaya, Madi, Dan, Me

Thursday was the day that we dedicated ourselves completely to finishing our stories. It was hard work, but it was also relaxing in a way, compared to the day before.  I worked with my group, the Greene Beans (shut up, the name is awesome), and we have grown even closer in the past couple of days. To be honest, when I met Madison, Dan and Yaya, I thought they were going to be completely different. I never imagined how funny they would be, how fast we could become friends. And that’s true for pretty much everyone on the Greene Team.

It’s hard to believe this camp is almost over. While some of it has been stressful and annoying, I have made a lot of good memories and made friendships that will hopefully last a long time.

I feel like just as I started to get used to the routine and work, the week was coming to a close. Don’t get me wrong, I miss my bed and my siblings and quality food, but it has been an overall good experience for me.

Even though I don’t plan on a future in journalism, I think that this camp has changed my overall view on jobs in general, college life and the hard work that people put in when they feel passionate about something.

That’s probably the problem—I don’t feel passionate about journalism. I love to write, but my interest veers more toward creative writing, the ability to create anything without any restrictions.

Today (Friday) was pretty much the same as Thursday. The only thing different is that for lunch, we all went into a small room, crowded around a table, and ate pizza. We all shared our comments on the camp, what we wished had happened and what we approved of. It was interesting to hear what everyone had to say, and how their opinions had changed throughout the week.

Most people had realized that they didn’t want to pursue journalism as a career, but that they appreciated all that they had learned from the camp. I think that it is still a minor possibility for me, maybe for most of us, but I just don’t think that it is for everybody, because it is so different from other professions.

Despite everything, I had a good time at this camp, and I don’t think I’ll ever forget it.

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High fives and goodbyes

Sunday, the first day of camp, felt like forever ago. Even though it has only been five days since we left our parents for a week of camp, the whole week has been a blur. Between the Ducks game and the two interviews yesterday, there has been no time to breathe. But right now, all of us have just finished editing our videos, so it’s cooling down a lot.

The best parts of this experience would have to be the video editing and the news anchoring parts. These were really fun compared to taking notes and reporting. Besides anchoring, we also got a full broadcast journalism crash course lesson, which included learning about the control room, cameras and teleprompter. If anything, I would be most interested in the broadcast and video editing section of journalism; I find it the most intriguing and it is easier to speak in front of the camera than it is to write.

Kelly Colligan and I, second day of camp.
Kelly Colligan and I, second day of camp.
Two pairs of roommates, plus YaYa
Two pairs of roommates, plus YaYa

We had some really interesting and fun alums of the program come and help all of us with the process of journalism. Becky was really helpful in writing my script and Briana was really helpful with writing the Ducks post.

I am in the middle about going home. I am sort of excited because I can’t wait to eat some real food other than college pizza twice a day. But, I really want to stay because of all the amazing friends I’ve made this week. Tonight is the last night we will be seeing each other for a while, so we are going to try to make it count. Hopefully the math and science camps won’t hog the Ping-Pong and pool tables like the rest of the week. We have already developed a Facebook page to make plans for a reunion, even though the camp didn’t end yet.

There were some really fun times, there were some really stressful times, and there were some really sassy times. But, all in all, the camp started off pretty shaky, but ended up being a really worthwhile life experience with lots of new friends involved.

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Wasome week

It is Friday—how exciting. I lost track of time Thursday after working all day in the newsroom with food breaks throughout the day, but my team progressed in our assignments. We agreed on a team name—Wasome Sauce (Wasim is our coordinator).

Everything is coming along together and I can’t believe its been a week. It is a different atmosphere working specifically to finish assignments, rather in school when I have to balance meeting deadlines and editing with homework and reading for other classes.

Working all day yesterday was tiring. But it was a draining type of fatigue. It was not so much physical, but a common feeling that comes with a package of education usually followed by a catharsis of success once you open it. I finished the broadcast piece on the Emergency Operations Center and submitted my story on new police cars on campus for edit.

A panoramic shot my work station Thursday night. Professor Ricioppo sitting in Kelly's seat, helping her with editing.
A panoramic shot of my work station Thursday night. Professor Ricioppo was sitting in Kelly’s seat, helping her with editing.

Professor Ricioppo helped us out with the film editing and learning about scripting tracks, then we laid the tracks down in a little studio booth that was cool and professional. I feel more confident about writing voice-overs and recording and editing now, which was something that I was really looking forward to. Usually at school, I rushed broadcasts to meet deadline and tended to focus on writing more but now I feel comfortable with both.

It has been a fun week and I have learned more than I thought I could learn in a week from walking and planning a report to editing video and audio to playing pool with kids from other camps.

This is my last blog post for the Greene Gazette but I will try to find the time to blog elsewhere. I found it amazing how close the Greene team got and the level of comfort we felt with each other without really knowing one another previously (with a few exceptions).  I will try to stay in touch with everyone I have met, and keep learning and applying skills to journalism wherever it is applicable.

I snapped a picture back during the first photography lesson, that sums up the week.

Profesor Ahmad jumping to help us get a good photo as we practiced newly learned skills.
Profesor Ahmad jumping to help us get a good photo as we practiced newly learned skills.
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A great Greene ending

The lectures are over, the articles posted, and the week-long Greene program will officially close in less than 24 hours.

And wow, what a week it’s been.

A first day photograph featuring John Wiliams' back (clearly, I had no idea what I was doing -- yet).
A first day photograph featuring John Wiliams‘ back (clearly, I had no idea what I was doing — yet).

As is said in the bio Reid wrote of me, journalism is not my primary passion – the reading and writing I’ve always loved has been fiction and flowery language. The creative writing class in my high school was linked to a journalism one, but, even then, my interest in journalism was rather secondary.

A glimpse of the campus.
A glimpse of the campus.

This week, however—holding a microphone and interviewing randoms in “man on the street” segments, researching and writing, asking questions in a press conference setting, working the tech board in a television studio—has been enlightening.

A view from the back of Studio B.
A view from the back of Studio B.

It’s hard, even, to pick highlights to reflect on here. From all the special guests and unique opportunities of the week, so many stand out. (And, additionally, writing this blog has really been a blast).

Moment of silence for the computer I'm going to miss so much when I return to a tiny laptop.
Moment of silence for the computer I’m going to miss so badly when I return to my little laptop.

Reporting at the Ducks game and in all formats throughout the week (at the Emergency Operations Center, the Shawn Heilbron press conference, last night’s “man on the street” segments) has been my favorite. It’s not so much of a stretch from what I already love—as president of Massapequa’s Drama Club, I’m no stranger to improv, which is what the interviews mostly came to be. Still, holding the mic and asking questions was a rush each time.

SBU!
SBU! (Photo Credit: Courtney Taylor~)

The aspects of journalism I had been unfamiliar with also ended up being intriguing and enjoyable—photography and film, for example—and the teachers of those lectures really made them easy to understand (professor Ricioppo for film and John Williams for photography).

Dual-screen photography action.
Dual-screen journalist action.

The week has been jam-packed with special guests from the field: Bob Herzog, who brought sports journalism to life; Matt Clark, the investigative journalist who truly piqued my interest (I’ve always wanted to write, of course, but after seeing the movie “Agent Cody Banks” when I was a kid, I became crazy about the idea of being a spy—this seems to be the perfect blend of the two); Sandra Peddie, another investigative reporter, busting crimes and getting to the bottom of things (while also being an engaging speaker and intriguing professional).

Just around the corner from where the news magic really happens. (Photo by me!)
Just around the corner from where the news magic really happens. (Photo by me!)

Speaking to people pursuing journalism in the real world has been enlightening, and hearing their stories furthered my interest in journalism from secondary to, perhaps, a bit higher.

Madison Flotteron and Courtney Taylor anchoring at the Stony Brook University School of Journalism broadcast studio on Wednesday, July 23, 2014. Photo by Wasim Ahmad.
(Photo Credit: Wasim Ahmad)

While the special guests of the week were exciting and interesting for the bits they were here, the professionals I was with for the entirety of the week—Professor Ahmad, Professor Duffy and Professor Dowdy—were incredibly informative and interesting in their own rights, teaching us the business that they themselves are passionate about.

Sitting down this morning to edit my piece with professor Duffy and professor Dowdy was an extremely valuable journalistic experience, as their classes on writing have been throughout the week.

Team Wasumsauce!
a little late for #tbt, but throwback to earlier in the week!

And, of course, as member of Team Wasumsauce, I’ve really enjoyed professor Ahmad’s courses on blogging (three blog posts in one day, so, clearly) and the photo side of journalism, as well as his guidance on our group’s stories. Outside of his intriguing courses, I’ve had a great time as a member of his team: working at the Ducks game, going on an impromptu tour of campus after we all missed the bus and hearing about his experiences in the field.

(Photo Credit: Wasim Ahmad)
(Photo Credit: Wasim Ahmad)

Outside of class altogether, I’ve met a ton of interesting, intelligent and all-around cool people in this program, and being on a real college campus has been an eye-opening experience as well.

So, with the week coming to its finale (finishing off with a movie and tomorrow’s closing ceremonies), I’d be amiss if I left out my thoughts on journalism altogether after this week.

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I don’t know where to begin—it’s exciting, it’s thought-provoking, and I know now that I would find my life lacking without pursuing journalism in some avenue—a minor, a double major, who knows?

a final newsroom selfie to tie it all together -- a journalist with a press pass.
a final blurry newsroom selfie to tie it all together — a journalist with a press pass~

Nevertheless, the Greene Program has been a once-in-a-lifetime experience. I learned to use a camera from a Pulitzer prize winner on the first day, amongst all the other extraordinary opportunities the program has given me—that certainly doesn’t happen every day!

I come away from the program with skill, interest and a heightened love for written word—the Greene legacy, fulfilled.

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A short stay with lasting impressions

Today was the last full day I have here and it was by far the most fun.

I interviewed someone everyone should strive to be—a 20-year-old student named Ruchi Shah. Seeing how passionate she is about her goals really lit a fire in my belly about kicking my plans for the future into overdrive.

Today I also learned just how fun video editing can be, and I can safely say that it could be my career.

I realized this type of work truly can be fun—I found my love for not just video editing but word editing as well. I’m so excited to go back to my school’s newspaper and teach them everything I’ve learned here. Even now I have so many stories  in mind and I’m so ready to take on every single part of their completion processes on my own.

Coming out of here, I feel like I have evolved into an entirely different journalist. I thought they were joking when the advisors said they could cram an entire college program into a week and see dramatic change, but I know better now, because they were very much correct.

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