Tag Archives: Yardalie Daniel

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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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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An unforgettable week

I can’t believe the week is coming to an end. The days were certainly longer, and the nights shorter. But the experience was definitely one that will last forever. I am so grateful that I was chosen to be part of this program that cost me nothing, but taught everything; the different aspects of journalism, friendship, living the college life. I couldn’t have asked a better way to spend this last week of July. I wish it could have last longer.

Here at Stony Brook University, the Greene Gazette program is the first summer getaway I have ever experienced throughout my teenage life. I made great friends in the span of one week and we bonded as if we’ve been friends our whole lives. I enjoy having girl nights with them because we talked, laughed and joked about everything. My roommate, Kelly Colligan, was the best roommate I could have ever asked for.

YaYa, Kelly, Hanna, Reid
YaYa, Kelly, Hanna, Reid

Going to Newsday showed me that journalism is not simple and a lot of work has to be done. It also gave me a clearer picture of how diligently people work in the field. In addition, I enjoyed going to my first ball game ever, the Ducks. I took pictures and  jumped in the bouncing house with Hanna, Reid, Madison and Noelia.

Most importantly, I am thankful that the team and I had amazing and supportive professors who organized this program in honor of the late Bob Greene, who left them motivated enough to organize this institute. Wasim Ahmad for teaching us about blogging, Cathrine  Duffy  for her lessons and patience and Zachary Dowdy for his motivation and the other professors who also participated in the program.

Their teachings have changed our perspective on journalism for the better. I took what they had to offer in such a small amount of time and applied it to what I really want to do in life. I know for sure wherever life takes me, I will definitely take some type of photography and writing courses in college. They will both be an aspect in my life. This experience has really been a week to remember.

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Family reunion, the sweet escape and an enlightening realization

Tuesday night was a lot of fun. We stayed up until 2 a.m. playing Cards Against Humanity. One of the CAs (the one that played Disney music in the shower) joined us, too. Her name is Nujbat Meraji or Nuji for short. She is so nice and was a lot of fun to hang out with for the night.

Madison
Madison Flotteron in the School of Journalism broadcast studio on Wednesday, July 23, 2014. Photo by Wasim Ahmad.

The following morning we went to the TV studio at Stony Brook and did practice broadcasts. This was my favorite because I love being in front of a camera. It gives me such a rush and I enjoy seeing how the videos turn out in the end. It’s amazing how much goes on in a broadcast. There is never a dull moment when putting a broadcast together because there is so much teamwork. Everyone needs to help each other into making the broadcast a success.

Later that day made Wednesday the best day of camp. We finally were able to leave the campus. The lack of freedom here is really getting to me, so I really appreciated the field trip that took place.

Running around at the Ducks Game
Running around at the Ducks Game

Visiting Newsday was fun because I found my uncle, Pat Mullooly, who works for Kidsday. I hung out with him for a bit and he gave everyone Kidsday T-shirts. He also took me around Newsday on my own and I was able to see all of the interesting people who work on the paper.

Selfies at Kidsday with the one and only Uncle Pat
Selfies at Kidsday with the one and only Uncle Pat

One of the speakers at Newsday helped me realize that this career isn’t for me. He said that if you want to make money this isn’t the job for it. It hit me that I’d rather make a lot of money than broadcast everyday. I think that broadcasting will get old pretty quickly because I am starting to get sick of it from just a week of camp.

I was really excited that we were going to a Ducks Game because I really wanted to watch the game and have fun with the Greene Team. Silly me! I did not even get a chance to sit down in our seats and I don’t even think I saw the game at all. We had to work the WHOLE time!!

I thought this was going to be the one fun day before we dove into finishing all the work. I did not find it necessary to work the whole game because the footage just got repetitive. On top of that, we didn’t even stay all nine innings, resulting in us missing the fireworks show that was supposed to take place after the game.

When we finally finished the broadcast.
When we finally finished the broadcast.

The trip wasn’t a total bust though because Reid Rubio, Noelia Vazquez, Hanna Da’Mes, Yardalie Daniel and I went inside the Ducks’ bouncy house! Yes, we sound like we’re 10 years old, but it was the most fun thing about this week. It was the most exercise we got in a while too because we’ve been cooped up in the newsroom all week. The people working the bouncy house were very nice letting us in because it is generally for younger kids.

Inside the bouncy house there was a slide, also. Those three minutes in the bouncy house were the highlight of this week. We were finally able to let loose and just enjoy each other.

We like tall trophies
We like tall trophies

I found out last night that I can’t have journalism as a career. I cannot imagine missing out on every event I go to because I need to cover a story on it. Last night was a real eye-opener and I want to find another career.

Overall, I do still enjoy broadcasting, but I think I want to find something else as a profession. I will still keep up with the world of journalism, but I will most likely minor in it rather than have it as a major in college.

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Real journalists in real cubicles: a day of real-life experiences

Newsday cubicles. Photo Cred: Hanna Da'Mes
Newsday cubicles. Photo Cred: Hanna Da’Mes

Wednesday was probably the most eventful day out of the week so far. It began with an early breakfast as usual, and then after our morning lectures, we headed over to Newsday. We were able to see rooms full of cubicles that real journalists worked in, and we learned more about the history of both journalism and Newsday. Some people from Newsday volunteered to speak to us, telling their stories and letting us ask questions. Before the field trip, we went to a broadcast set on campus and worked the various jobs included in TV news. My favorite job was probably the sound booth.

Lisa Angell and Kayla Aponte sleeping. Photo Cred: Hanna Da'Mes
Lisa Angell and Kayla Aponte sleeping. Photo Cred: Hanna Da’Mes

Afterwards, we all got back on the bus and rode to the Ducks game. We separated into our groups and tried to figure out what we were going to write our stories on. My group, which consisted of Madison Flotteron,  Yardalie “Yaya” Daniel and Dan Walocha, wanted our story to be on the high school and college students who worked in the concession stands, but we were told later that we weren’t allowed to, so we had to settle for it being on the various groups and organizations that were attending the game. We walked around for hours, interviewing people, shooting b-roll and taking pictures for our story. After a couple of hours, we decided that we needed a break, so we went to the bouncy house, and it seemed that a little time acting like a kid was a good way to relieve stress. We quickly got back to work after eating, interviewing another baseball team and shooting some more b-roll.

It was a really long day, and the exhaustion showed as we drifted to sleep on the bus ride back to the university.

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Kelly Colligan and Dan Walocha

We don’t actually work for Newsday

I had a chance to work the camera with Jacqueline. We managed to snap this quick selfie in the broadcast studio.
I had a chance to work the camera with Jacqueline. We managed to snap this quick selfie in the broadcast studio.
I can’t believe the week is already half over. Yesterday was jam-packed with ducks, cameras and good advice. The first thing we got to do was practice filming in front of a real broadcast studio. We each got our turn to play the anchor, the cameraman, floor manager, and more. Being on-camera wasn’t too much pressure, but I actually liked being at the teleprompter the most. It was really cool to see how broadcasting really works, and I loved seeing everyone laugh and have fun on camera.

Next, we visited Newsday to see the facility and talk to some journalists employed there. I was surprised at how huge the newsroom actually was. Everyone from sports writers to entertainment writers were hard at work. We even got some free t-shirts for our travels.

After visiting the newsroom, we sat down to hear some guest speakers. We listened to four or five journalists who spoke about their experiences, and how we could become better journalists. Each and every story was so inspiring and everyone seemed to genuinely love their jobs.

Following our Newsday tour, we drove straight to the Long Island Ducks game. I had never been to a Ducks game before, so I didn’t realize the amount of people that would come to support the team. Families, little league teams, couples, and loyal fans were just some of the enthusiastic fans that sat in the seats of the Bethpage Ballpark.

We got to work right away, beginning with a quick press conference with Ducks Media Relations & Broadcasting Manager Mike Polak. Everyone in the stands looked at us as we wore our green “Greene” shirts labeled “PRESS” on the back. I think the Newsday backpacks gave people a false impression that we worked for Newsday, but that was just fine to me. Once the game started, we got right to interviewing.

We interviewed about five or six fans on the rivalry between the teams, the Bridgeport Bluefish and the Ducks. It was fun filming B-roll, or background shots/action, because we got to watch all the diverse and interesting fans. The only downside was since I volunteered to film that day, I had to carry the camera, camera bag, and tripod everywhere we went.

Once we were finally finished interviewing, we left the game a little early. On the 45 minute bus ride home, we relaxed and listened to Bob Herzog talk about life as a sports writer.

After we got off the bus, we spent some time in the dorm’s recreation room, and played ping pong and pool with some of the students from the math program. Yaya and I walked up to our room like zombies, and crawled into bed to relieve ourselves of exhaustion. We woke up today again, at 6:30 a.m., and now we are blogging, at 8:37, at it again.

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Yardalie Daniel

Yardalie Daniel: Excelling at language, loving journalism

Language is a craft, an art. Those who read, who write, who speak cannot help but be aware of that fact. Language is also a skill, one at which 15-year-old Yardalie Daniel excels. In fact, she learned to speak English in under a year.

Though one may not realize it upon first speaking to Yardalie, she is not a native English speaker. Instead, she hails from Haiti, where she spoke both Creole, a dialect used for casual conversations, and French, which is used in official documents and spoken by teachers in school.

However, Yardalie’s life changed drastically after an earthquake hit Haiti four years ago in January 2010, at which point Yardalie, along with her father and two sisters, moved to the United States to join her mother and brother who had previously settled in Huntington, New York. This forced Yardalie to deal with both a change in habitat and language. She initially spoke little English.

“Maybe I knew enough to say ‘Hi’ or ‘Good morning’,” Yardalie said. After the move, she was forced to experience a steep learning curve, and her English skills soon expanded. “By the end of the year, I could speak properly, but I still had the accent.”

For help with this new language, Yardalie turned to books, picking up teen books from her library in her spare time.

“Reading was a good help to learn English,” she said. “I read a lot of books, and my English became a lot more understandable. Reading was easier than speaking because I could see the similarities to French.”

It was this affinity for reading, along with a love of writing, which led to Yardalie’s interest in journalism. In her sophomore year of high school, Yardalie took a journalism class that reawakened a possibility for her. Though Yardalie had been a member of her school newspaper in her freshman year of high school, she was forced to quit due to conflicts in her schedule. The class revived her ability to be a journalist.

Yardalie credits her journalism teacher, Aimee Antorino, with having a large influence on this rediscovery.

“She’s lovely,” Yardalie said of her teacher. “She really motivated me, even though I was unsure, always pushed me to write stories and develop my writing.”

Antorino said Yardalie is a hard worker who succeeds.

“Yardalie is a very intelligent, mature young woman,” said Antorino. “She is more determined and eager to succeed than most high school students I know. I think it is very exciting that Yardalie has developed an interest in journalism at such a young age. Her life experiences will help her become a strong writer with many world interests.”

Coming out of the course with at least a base upon which to build skills, Yardalie said she is looking to become more responsible for her own writing and to improve her writing skills, as well as to expand her knowledge into the area of photography. Up to this point, her exposure to journalism has been purely in print, though she hopes that will soon change.

“I love challenging myself,” Yardalie said. “I’m just scared.”

However, there is still plenty of time for her fears to be allayed, as a professional career is still several years off for Yardalie. Besides, Yardalie currently views writing as more of a hobby than a career path.

She also has a love for business and design, and hopes to be able to work in a field that encompasses those areas, although if an opportunity to write for a living came up, she would love to pursue it.

“I’d love to maybe work for a magazine,” she said, her tone brightening.

For the time being, though, Yardalie will continue to hone her skills, working on picking up yet another language—this time from her high school Spanish class—and attending the Robert W. Greene Summer Institute for High School Journalists this July at Stony Brook University.

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Mary Kate Guma

Mary Kate Guma: ‘Being at the school newspaper meetings help me feel alive’

Mary Kate Guma never thought she would have a passion for English and journalism.

But the 16-year-old Locust Valley rising senior has developed a love for the subject. She said she is hoping to gain even more experience during this week on the staff of the Greene Gazette at the Robert W. Greene Summer Institute for High School Journalists at Stony Brook University.

Her shyness has never kept Mary Kate from showing her passion for journalism. Rather, quite the contrary is true; the field helped her to come out of her shell and express herself and her talents to the public.

Mary Kate has been a member of her school’s newspaper, The Voice, since entering Locust Valley Middle School. She will become the club’s editor-in-chief for her final year at her high school’s newspaper, the Spectrum. Her school’s staff has nearly 10 editors and 15 writers. She said she plans on trying to bring add more staff and, perhaps, start an online version of the paper.

She was born in Locust Valley and still lives there with her parents and younger sister, Olivia. Mary Kate said she enjoys traveling and that she recently traveled to Canada and referred to the trip as an “exceptional visit,” mainly because of her interest in learning French. She also enjoys skiing in the mountains of Connecticut, where she spends time with her aunt.

One of the things she likes to do most is eat French toast, which she described as her favorite food. And she is not afraid of doing so at any time of the day, even at 11 p.m.. She enjoys participating in various clubs and playing golf and volleyball.

Furthermore, Mary Kate said her journey to becoming a journalist derived from her love for reading. As a child, she enjoyed reading classics such “Anne of Greene Gables.”

She said that she found “comfort,” in reading and that it “was a way to express herself” as a child.

History has been her favorite subject in high school since she enjoys learning about other people. Plus, she said, it’s always been a subject to discuss with her family members.

However, her English teacher, Mary Greco, has given her a new perspective by analyzing literature and talking in-depth about books she uses in her class.

If being a journalist is what she her destiny is, she hopes it’s in the writing area of the field. She said she is excited and feels that it’s important to her because she will get to concentrate on one thing and have the ability to know “how it feels as a career.”

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An arena broadcast with the Greene Beans

Today we worked on portraits with John Williams. He helped us with lighting and gave us tips on how to take a better photo.

Photo credits to Noelia Vazquez
Photo credits to Noelia Vazquez
Unfortunately, today was his last day with us and I know I personally will miss him.

We started working with our teams on our stories. My team will be covering the new arena that was just built at Stony Brook. It was fun meeting the basketball players and talking with the athletics director. Everyone seems enthusiastic about the new arena and has high hopes to attract new fans.

My teammates and I really enjoy working together. We decided on calling ourselves the Greene Beans. Dan Walocha was amazing at getting the right angle for our footage. Yardalie Daniel and Hanna Da’Mes got great photos of the new arena. I think our final piece will look fabulous when we finish it.

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Monday madness for the Greene Team

panning your subject

Yesterday was full of photography, cartwheels, and Double Stuf Oreos. We started the day by blogging and interviewing the new Athletics Director here at Stony Brook, Shawn Heilbron. I’ve never interviewed a subject among eighteen others, so that was really interesting. Heilbron was very well spoken and enjoyable to listen to. He gave us exactly what we needed to write our article.

After lunch, we got the privilege to learn from a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer, John Conrad Williams. After seeing what an incredible photographer he was, I was a bit intimidated. But after Williams showed us some basic skills of photography, I became more confident. We ventured out of the ice-cold newsroom, and out to take photos of the fountain, and then on to portraits. After experimenting with the camera’s ISO, shutter speed and aperture, we moved on to action shots. We jumped, cartwheeled, and leaped across the grass, while our partner tried their best to capture the shot. One of my shots came out really cool, so I inserted it into this blog post.

Following our photography lesson, we ate dinner. I decided to make instant mac & cheese in the cafeteria’s microwave. Solid choice. Once everyone had finished eating, we began our broadcast lesson. Rick Ricioppo was our instructor, and he helped us assemble the camera on the tripod, and get the most out of our videos. Towards the end of the lesson we got the chance to test out our new skills and tape some scenes outside. We filmed everything from footsteps to still nature. I’m excited to see how our (very random) movie comes out.

After a very long day, we situated into the dorms. All the girls gathered in one room to play a fun game called Scattergories. We laughed at every single response while shoveling down Double Stuf Oreos and Doritos. Party games and junk food is always a good time. After a few rounds of playing, my roommate Yaya and I went back to our room. I’m so glad Yaya is my roommate because we are so much alike. We will definitely keep in touch after this program ends. Let’s just say there’s never a dull moment in room C211.

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Motion in action

My first day here at Stony Brook University, with the Greene Team has been exhausting, but fun. Thanks to the wonderful John Williams, who devoted his time to teach the team about the aspects of photography, my day was fantastic. Photography has always been something I wanted to experience, but never pushed myself to do. The lesson that he taught us was long, but fairly educational. His sense of humor also made it entertaining.

IMG_0244I enjoyed the way he photographed pictures. It gave me a new perspective of what photography is really about. For many people (and me) using a camera has always been about taking a picture—and we would be lucky if they were good ones. But now, I think of it in a different way, as in changing the shutter speed of the camera to obtain a perfect shot, switching the ISO and knowing the difference when I’m taking picture inside and outside. Although I didn’t do so well in taking the pictures, I am looking forward to learn more about photography in today’s lesson.

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No pillow. No fan. No problem.

Forgetting my pillow and fan seemed to be the worst way to begin my journey with the Greene Gazette team at Stony Brook University. However, that didn’t stop me from enjoying my first day with students I barely knew, who within the night became the best group of friends. I’m eager to learn new techniques and methods about journalism, and also looking forward to make and keep wonderful friends.

With a charming welcome and a barbecue, the team was able to learn a little bit about everyone and everything. We were also accompanied by a quick lesson on blogging and photography by our program advisors. They are wonderful people who take their time to teach us in order to accomplish Bob Greene’s dream.

My first night with the group has been excellent since my arrival. For someone who has never been in a residence hall or any summer program whatsoever, I quickly adapted to my short, but new environment. The students welcomed me kindly and even nicknamed me “YaYa.” I was pleased with the idea since I’ve never been given a nickname with my real name, Yardalie.

My roommate, Kelly, has been nothing but wonderful and friendly to me. We all spent the night eating pizza, chatting about boys, dancing and singing to the craziest music. It felt like we’ve been roomates our entire lives. And I enjoy every minute of it. As I’m excited to develop new ideas, I also hope this week could be longer and never end.

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