Alcorn State University’s Mass Communications Department hosted its annual Media Day program on April 4th. The program took place in the the Gold Room of the Clinton Bristow Jr. Dining Hall from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm. As the theme of this year’s media day was “Working Locally, Thinking Globally,” a number of panelists were present to assist in speaking on the theme. A few guest panelists who were brought in to speak were Therese Apel, Breaking News Reporter for the Clarion Ledger in Jackson, Mississippi, Roosevelt “Kip” Smith, Chief Photographer at WJTV Channel 12 in Jackson, Mississippi and Jackie Hampton, Publisher of the Mississippi Link newspaper in Jackson, Mississippi. Not only were there individuals from well known television stations but former members of the Mass Communications Department at Alcorn and local media faces were panelists as well. Included in this list were Beunkka Davis, 2015 alumnae of Alcorn State University’s Mass Communications Department and the Interim Director and Staff Writer for the Office of Land Grant Communications in the School of Agriculture and Applied Sciences at Alcorn, Justus Reed, 2010 alumnus of Alcorn State University’s Mass Communications Department and Staff Writer in the Division of Marketing and Communication, Timothy Crisler, District Chair, Advisor and Instructor of Radio and Television Production and Broadcast Technology at Hinds Community College, Utica campus and Calvin Butler, Operations Manager for WTYJ/WMIS radio station in Natchez, Mississippi.
With a plethora of familiar faces and Mass Communications students flooding into the Gold Room, the program began with a welcome by Freshman Mass Communications major Jordan Lampley and greetings from Dr. Babu Patlolla, Dean of Arts and Sciences.
Over the years the Media Day program has been hosted in an effort to show Mass Communications students opportunities in the real world. Successful people in the field are often brought in to speak with the students and offer some insightful and supportive words. This year’s Keynote Speaker was Therese Apel, Breaking News Reporter for the Clarion Ledger in Jackson, Mississippi. She spoke on how important it is to make opportunities for yourself. Her message also included a reference to a number of her own breaking news stories in which she used them as an example to be professional and keep your emotions underwrap when under the eye of the public.
“They (the students) have the thoughts of so many people who are inside the market or inside the industry. It’s so important from where they sit because to understand some of the things you’re up against you see that it’s not all glamour but it can have a beautiful outcome,” said Apel.
“This gives us a chance to see people in the industry and where they came from as well as where they are going,” stated Jaylan Chapman, Junior Mass Communications major at Alcorn State University.
Special recognition was given to the guest panelists after a number of questions presented by the students were answered and later in the program the faculty and students were awarded for their continuous hard work.