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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Brad Luck

Class of 2002, Bachelor's


What are the top three skills journalism students should learn in college?:

1. Writing - If you can write well, you are steps ahead of many others. From writing memos and letters, to scripts and story pitches, writing skills are crucial to your success.

2. Interviewing/networking - The way you communicate with others can mean the difference between the job you have and the job you wish you had.

3. News judgment - In the journalism industry, you will need to make many decisions in a short period of time.

What were your duties at ATVN? :

Assignment desk editor, photographer, writer, and show/line producer

How did ATVN prepare you for your career?:

Working at ATVN, you really get the chance to hone your writing, shooting and editing skills. You get to practice news judgment in an environment where it is safe to make mistakes – as opposed to in the real world where a bad decision can cost the station both money and viewers. ATVN is the most hands-on experience you can get in a newsroom while still in college.

What is your advice to aspiring journalists?:

Work as hard as you can while in school on projects like ATVN and at your internships. Take full advantage of being in those situations and learn as many different jobs as possible. The more versatile you are, the more valuable you are to prospective employers. Also, find a mentor. Make contact with a journalist you respect and admire, and ask that person for advice from time to time.

What should graduates keep in mind when negotiating their first job?:

When looking for your first job, you need to be open to jobs and locations you many not have previously considered. Be open, but do not feel pressured to take the first position offered to you. Know what market size you would like to start in. Aim for that market size and if it doesn’t work out, be flexible but value yourself and help your future employer see that value. Don’t sell yourself short - you may regret it later.

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