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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

How to be an ATVN MVP

    Being a good journalist requires a good amount of confidence and moxie, as Rebecca, one of our faculty advisors would say. Being a great journalist requires M.V.P.- Moxie, Versatility and a level of Perfectionism.

    At the beginning of the semester many of our MJ’s (multimedia journalists) were just learning how to shoot, write and edit video properly. Helping them learn the ropes is a good learning lesson for me and how what knowledge or methods I would pass onto them would ultimately reflect on me. It was a little bit of an ego boost to see them smile when I would remind them of something they might have forgot to do while editing.

    Nearing the end of the semester, the tables have certainly turned! More and more, I find myself impressed me with their enthusiasm to improve upon what they have learned.

    Take for instance, Kaylee Heck. The constant smile she has on her face and excitement she has for her assignments prove that she has moxie. Out in the field, having that extra bit of enthusiasm can help make your interview subjects feel more comfortable with you and provide you with great sound!

    After Kaylee has come back (many times from the school across town), her work in the ATVN newsroom is only just beginning. I check in with her and ask her how her interviews went, what b-roll she shot and send her off to the edit bay to upload, cut and edit her footage. This is where her versatility kicks in while she looks through all her clips, decides which sound bites to use from each of them and sequence them according to what she learned from my co-producers and I all the way back in August.

    Editing is one of my favorite aspects when it comes to completing a story, but, because I am a bit of a perfectionist in making sure my story is exactly how I want it to look, I understand when I see Kaylee re-watching her sequences. It takes a healthy amount of persistence to get a Grade A sequence, making sure there is no black and that the sound bites are connected in a good flow.

    In the end, that M.V.P. pays off. The persistence that Kaylee showed in editing her piece for the story displayed her moxie in reporting and her versatility in editing. MJ's coming into their own and becoming MVP's turns out to be a win-win for them and me! They get to learn and I learn how to improve and better help them!

    So if you are looking to hone your MJ and reporting skills, just remember to have M.V.P.!

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