Alumna of the Month – December 2015

josie

Josie McSpadden (G’13)

@josieduckett

www.linkedin.com/in/josieduckett

“All the exhaustion, pressure, frustration — mixed with life-altering relationships gave me greatest challenges/rewards of my career.”

We are proud to present Josie McSpadden as our December Alumna of the Month. Josie is a Senior Communications Officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in Washington, D.C. Her responsibilities are balancing the communications and press relations for the foundation and she credits her Journalism background for teaching her how to strengthen her writing skills and prioritize information she gets on a daily basis. Read more about Josie and her advice to future journalists.

What are your responsibilities at your current workplace?

Lead communications and press relations in support of the foundation’s U.S. education priorities. Manage public voice for the President of the U.S. Program and maintain relationships with American media organizations.

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From the Intern Files: Catherine Trifiletti at Washington Life Magazine

Catherine Trifiletti Kudos

Twitter: @cathtrif

“Organizations are constantly updating their career pages so if you have publication in mind – there is no shame in stalking them directly. Also don’t be afraid to reach out to professors and peers. Excuse my cliché but, life is all about connections!”

MPS Journalism: What company are you working with and what kind of stories do they work on?

Catherine Trifiletti: Washington Life Magazine is a hyper-local print publication that focuses on the people who make D.C. the powerful and dynamic city it is. For example, this month’s issue highlights 25 local tech entrepreneurs empowering the District through innovation.

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Alumna of the Month – November 2015

Allyson C. Goodwin

Allyson C. Goodwin (G’ 12)

Twitter: @AyBeautifulLife

Website: http://www.acgevents.com/

“Journalism has changed a lot even in the last 5 to 10 years and many employers expect rookies to know how to do a little bit of everything, which can be challenging for someone who wants to write for online only or for print.”

We are proud to present Allyson C. Goodwin as our November Alumna of the Month. Allyson works in Washington, D.C. at DKW Communications as a Technical Writer, were she writes and edits policy updates for federal government contracts.  She also works part-time managing her own event planning company, ACG Events. The skills she learned at Georgetown are essential in her current position and greatly assisted in the development of her business plan for ACG Events.  Read more about Allyson and her advice to future journalists.

MPS Journalism: What are your responsibilities at your job? 

Allyson C. Goodwin: As a technical writer my responsibilities include editing, writing, and providing feedback on policy updated from the Federal Government. I also manage my own event planning company, ACG Events, which entails the design, research, and implementation of events for my clients. I also provide content for the website and partner with other vendors to promote our businesses.

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From the Intern Files: Amel Guettatfi at CBS National News

Amel Guettatfi
“It’s definitely all about the hustle and bustle of ever-changing news. The team is like a well-oiled machine that makes sure the D.C. stories are all ready in time for Evening News with Scott Pelley. It’s exhilarating to watch something you may have contributed to, even in a small way, air live.”
We are thrilled to share that this Fall semester, MPS Journalism student, Amel Guettatfi started an internship with CBS News Investigative Unit and the Evening News. Her main responsibilities include extensive research, corroborations and proof on stories as well as interacting with the Evening News Team. We spoke with Amel about her experience working at one of the most important American television and radio networks and what her favorite part of the job is.
MPS Journalism: What kind of stories do you work on?

Amel Guettatfi: CBS News covers general news including national stories and politics. It also has various international correspondents including Charlie D’Agata who was most recently in on the border between Hungary and Serbia covering the refugee crisis.

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Alumna of the Month – October 2015

delece

Delece Smith-Barrow (G’12)

Twitter: @DeleceWrites

Website: https://about.me/delece

“Beef up your video skills. The more equipped journalists are at shooting and editing their own videos, the more marketable they are”

We are proud to present Delece Smith-Barrow as our October Alumna of the Month. Delece works in Washington, D.C. at U.S. News & World Report as a Reporter were she mostly writes and edits stories on higher education. Her Journalism degree has helped her the most on editing copy, which she applies everyday to her job. Read more about Delece and her advice to future journalists.

MPS Journalism: Why did you choose to attend Georgetown’s Journalism program?

Delece Smith-Barrow: I chose to attend Georgetown because of the flexibility. While there were a few required courses, I had a lot of freedom in terms of which classes I took. This let me choose electives that really interested me.

MPS JO: How has your degree from the Journalism program helped you in your current job?

DSB: My degree has been especially useful for editing copy. In school, my classmates and I would often read each other’s assignments and give each other feedback. Now I edit copy about every other day.

MPS JO: What is your best memory in the MPS Journalism program?

DSB: I will never forget visiting the White House Briefing Room. It made me realize how far I could go in journalism. Visiting the White House also reminded me that much of what journalists do reach consumers on a national and international level.

MPS JO: What one piece of advice would you give current students hoping to be journalists?

DSB: Get as much real-world experience as you can. Whether it’s through internships or part-time work as a student, it’s very important to apply what you learn in class to a real newsroom.

MPS JO: What is one digital tool or skill you would advise students to learn before working in the journalism field?

DSB: Beef up your video skills. The more equipped journalists are at shooting and editing their own videos, the more marketable they are. Video skills can be used with almost any beat and for a variety of roles: reporters, editors, web producers and many others.

MPS JO: What was the most surprising thing you learned about journalism in the real world that you didn’t know?

DSB: I would never have guessed how fast the industry would change. Online publications have transformed how the news is reported and how fast it gets out. Keeping up can be difficult.

MPS JO: What do you think is the biggest challenge young journalists face, and how can they overcome that obstacle?

DSB: Being versatile. Journalists can’t be too attached to any medium because we’re all required to have a variety of skills that can be used on a variety of platforms. Even if you love print journalism, for example, it might be difficult to only work for a print publication and not be required to contribute online.

One way to keep your skills fresh is to attend workshops and conferences offered by professional organizations, such as the Online News Association or the Education Writers Association. These groups regularly have training sessions that let journalists increase their skillsets.

MPS JO: What’s the most memorable piece you’ve published and why?

DSB: Not long after graduating I did a big story on the popularity of a local strip club in D.C. It was easily the hardest story I’ve ever written, but also it’s the most gratifying.

MPS JO: In recent months have you worked on any projects you are particularly
proud of or have you had any unique opportunities in your career?

DSB: I’ve done some interesting stories on how a decrease in the use of standardized tests have changed the landscape of law schools, and I’ve also written about a recent initiative from the Obama administration that aims to raise the profile of historically black colleges.

MPS JO: Where do you see yourself in five years?

DSB: I would love to have completed my first book while still working in education as an editor.

From the Intern Files: Mabinty Quarshie at Meet the Press

Mabinty Quarshie

@MabintyQ

“It’s always surprising that on Sundays when I watch the show in the control room (because I’m live-tweeting) and I know that what I’ve just tweeted or seen on the show will become a news story in less than two hours from several other news organizations. It’s still a little crazy to me.”

We are thrilled to share that this Fall semester, MPS Journalism student, Mabinty Quarshie started an internship with NBC’s Meet the Press. Meet the Press is a Political Talk Show that runs on Sunday’s at 9:00am. Her main responsibilities include working on social media marketing campaigns for the show. Part of her duties also include coming up with ideas on how to promote the show to various audiences. We spoke with Mabinty about her experience working at the longest running TV program in history and what her favorite part of the job is.

MPS Journalism: What company are you interning with and what’s the day to day like?

Mabinty Quarshie: I am the social media intern for Meet the Press, the longest-running program in television programming. Meet the Press usually tends to do stories on the latest news in politics and public affairs. But there are segments posted online in which the focus might be on cultural news. For example there was a segment on the local Washington Football team’s name or the shade balls that are being released in California to help with the drought.

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Alumna of the Month – September 2015

Alli (2)
Allison Ann Collins Brennan (G’13)
“There’s a great tool out there called Google. It will give you all sorts of information. Never ask a question of someone in a newsroom if you can find the information out on Google first. All sarcasm aside, be resourceful and persistent. I can’t tell you how many people ask me for things they can find out on their own”

 

We are proud to present Allison Brennan as our September Alumna of the Month. Allison works at CNN as an Associate Editorial Producer where her main function is  to get the best people on TV to talk about news of the day. This can vary anywhere from working with a campaign to have a presidential candidate on one of CNN’s shows, to reaching out to families who have lost loved ones, to talking to eye witnesses of crimes and asking them all to share their stories and perspectives with CNN’s viewers. She focuses heavily on political interviews, but also works on breaking news coverage and can travel to places like Baltimore, Maryland or Charleston, South Carolina and beyond at a moment’s notice to work on finding the best interviews. Read more about Allison and her advice to future journalists.

MPS JO: Why did you choose to attend Georgetown’s Journalism program

Allison Brennan: I knew when I started my career in Washington early on, I didn’t really want to be working in politics even though I was at the time. It felt very much like I was in square peg in a round hole. As I worked in different jobs, I found myself gravitating toward journalism and communications, but I didn’t really know how to break into the DC journalism scene. I also wasn’t entirely comfortable with my writing and with the editing skills it would take to be a writer or producer. And then learning the ethics of journalism really mattered to me because I knew I never wanted to be in a position where I wasn’t able to confidently make a judgment call. Georgetown allowed me to learn all of those things while still working and transition into a career in journalism.

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Alumna of the Month – August 2015

Diana Ozem.

Diana Eromosele (G’13)

Twitter: @lecturestobeats

Video Blog: www.lecturestobeats.com

On-Camera Interview Video Reel: https://vimeo.com/127775079

“I’m all about finding the common interests that drastically different cultures and communities share. I want Americans to care about a contentious divorce that’s happening on a farm in Kenya, and how the couple is trying to reconcile”

We are proud to feature Diana Eromosele as our August Alumna of the Month. Diana is a staff writer for The Root, where she writes about trending topics and stories covering black Americans and people of color all over the world. Her journalism career launched at Georgetown where she was immersed in the CNN Newsroom for her first journalism internship. Read more about how Diana stays up-to-date on news around the world and and where she sees herself in the next five years.

MPS Journalism: Why did you choose to attend Georgetown’s Journalism program?

Diana Eromosele: I was working in the communications department at a non- profit, but I quickly realized that instead of drafting press releases and media statements, I wanted to be on the other side of the table, asking the hard- hitting questions and shedding light on stories and current events that I found compelling.

Since I was working in Washington DC at the time, I checked to see if any of the prestigious schools in the area had graduate journalism programs, and I was very happy to see that Georgetown did. Plus, I was ecstatic to find that Georgetown’s journalism program was set up for working professionals, so I was able to work full-time and attend classes in the evening.

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Student Spotlight: Emily Codik, Arts Editor at Washingtonian Magazine

Emily Codik.jpg.crdownload

Twitter: @EmilyCodik

This past March, student Emily Codik was hired at Washingtonian Magazine as the arts editor. She now edits the quarterly Welcome Guide and leads arts coverage for the magazine and website. We spoke to Emily about her experience at the Washingtonian and asked her to share some advice on searching for a job or an internship.

MPS Journalism: Tell us about the Washingtonian and what kind of stories do they work on?

Emily Codik: Washingtonian Magazine is a local monthly publication featuring service packages, long form, restaurant reviews, event listings, and more. The magazine also publishes daily blog posts on local news, arts, dining, and fashion at Washingtonian.com.

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Alumni Kudos – Summer 2015