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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Mat Mendez

Class of 2009, Bachelor's

Mat Mendez joined Frank N. Magid Associates, Inc. as a Consulting Associate in early 2015 within the company's Media Strategy Group. In this role, Mat works to the benefit of local newsrooms across the country, aiding senior-level consultants and news managers in the application of market research to coverage strategies that best showcase each station's unique news brand. Prior to this, Mat was the Assistant News Director at his hometown station, KRCR-TV in Redding, CA and a digital journalist at WTVD-TV in Raleigh, NC. Before WTVD, he was a freelance field producer and desk assistant for ABC News in Los Angeles and New York, and an intern for KABC-TV in L.A. While at USC and ATVN, Mat was on the front lines of some of the biggest stories to hit Los Angeles, including the Sesnon Fire in Porter Ranch, a Metrolink train crash, and the hit-and-run that killed a USC student in March 2009.



Emmy Award certificate for contributions as field producer to “Good Morning America”

Hearst Journalism Awards Program – Second place: TV News, Add’l award for Best Use of TV in News Coverage

Soc. of Prof. Journalists, “Mark of Excellence - Photography” First place - Region 11/National finalist

L.A. Press Club – 1st Place, Best Student Newscast

Scripps Howard Foundation, “Top Ten Scholar”

Outstanding Broadcast Journalism Undergraduate - USC Annenberg


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

The bottom line on this question is you need to be good in all areas, very well-rounded, experienced, and eager to grow and learn with the times. That said, these skills are in demand:


1. Multiplatform writing - you will need to feed on-air, online and social, and be deft in doing so. 

2. Shooting, with and without professional gear. Your iPhone is powerful. Use it! Got a GoPro? Use it too! 

3a. Want to be on-air? Be active in your standups, and creative in your storytelling.  

3b. Producing or management more your thing? Aside from excellent news judgment, an insatiable news appetite, and knowing how to keep a show moving, take a quick trip to the business school and learn about what a brand is and how best to support and reinforce it. Trust me, it’ll come up

What were your duties at ATVN? :

News anchor, reporter, producer, W/S/E, assignment editor, floor manager, and Twitter. Lots of Twitter.

How did ATVN prepare you for your career?:

There’s nothing like learning journalism by doing journalism. ATVN is as real as it gets in a college environment. The experience is what you make of it. And if you take advantage of what ATVN has to offer, you will be well-prepared to enter the working world.

What is your advice to aspiring journalists?:

Do as much journalism as you can stand...and then do more. Do internships, do everything and anything. Ask questions until you feel like an idiot for asking so many questions. And don’t forget to stay in touch with those you’ve worked with in the past...ESPECIALLY if they offer to help you when needed.

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

Go in with a plan...know what you want and what you’ll settle for, and most importantly, don’t accept something that doesn’t feel right. If you’re getting railroaded into a quick decision or pay that’s not comparable to others in the market, make sure you take a breath and think twice.

Bachan Memorial Services

April 8, 2009

The family of Adrianna Bachan held a memorial service in Santa Barbara.


April 3, 2009

The 4 PM press conference announcing the arrest of the driver in the hit-and-run.


March 30, 2009

Police seek help from the public in finding a hit and run driver.

USC Hit and Run

March 30, 2009

Police ask for public's help tracking down suspects in morning press conference

BREAKING NEWS: USC student killed in a hit-and-run accident

March 29, 2009

Another student was critically injured. DPS says both students were taken to California Hospital.


February 23, 2009

The Owen and Maya ticket has one more appeal to get back in the election.


February 20, 2009

One small school thinks big when it comes to athletics.


February 9, 2009

Student workers on campus say their hours have been scaled back.


November 25, 2008

Yorba Linda residents brace for rain just a week after fires devastated the hillsides.


November 20, 2008

Many Americans received a failing grade on a civic test.

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