NBC News Student Seminar Highlights Unusual Educational Effort


By DAVID BAUDER, Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — Leaning on education in an aggressive and unusual way for a media organization, NBC News is making its leaders available to students this week for a one-day webinar on how to succeed in business. of the news.

The second Next Level summit taking place Tuesday is part of the NBCU Academy, a nearly two-year initiative that also includes jobs, journalism training videos and partnerships with some 45 colleges and universities.

The effort is directed primarily, but not exclusively, at students from diverse backgrounds. Cesar Conde, president of NBC Universal News Group, said in 2020 that his goal was to have a workforce at the company that was at least half women and half people of color.

The presidents of NBC News, MSNBC and CNBC will participate in Tuesday’s summit and discuss how students can help meet the demand for broadcast and digital content. Other panels include the use of social networks to gather news and new technologies in sports coverage.

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NBC Universal committed $6.5 million in funding to NBCU Academy when it was announced early last year.

The goal is to grow journalists, said Yvette Miley, who leads NBCU Academy as senior vice president of diversity, equity and inclusion at the newsgroup.

“You can’t just sit in the back of the pipe and wait for students to come out ready to go,” Miley said.

NBC helps develop courses and run workshops at participating schools. The network funds scholarships and has hired 11 young journalists for a two-year “embedding” program, all of them from diverse backgrounds. Since Conde announced his goals, 48% of the newsgroup’s new hires have been people of color and 63% are women.

Jose Diaz-Balart, Tom Llamas, Chuck Todd and Kristen Welker are among the NBC News personalities who have filmed video tutorials on topics like interviewing techniques and how to deal with sources. They are available for use by any educator.

MSNBC President Rashida Jones is among the executives who are available for guidance.

Jones said she went to college wanting to become a print reporter, because she thought the only jobs available in television news were on-air reporters. She quickly learned about other roles, like producing, which she was doing for a local station in Norfolk, Virginia, before she even finished school.

“Every time I talk to students, I think about my 17-year-old self and what I wanted to learn,” Jones said.

His top tip: Prepare, even overprepare, for interviews and new jobs so you’re not surprised by what comes your way.

At the University of Missouri School of Journalism, NBC helped hold workshops on diversity and investigative journalism for high school students last summer, Dean David Kurpius said.

Students respond positively to advice from experts, some of whom they recognize, who currently work in the business, he said.

“I think this attracts students and more new employees who are going to be the future leaders in this industry and that’s very important,” he said.

Through the academy, NBC is also helping fund documentary projects, sending guest professors and offering career guidance. A journalism training camp was held at the US Open golf tournament, Miley said.

She also issued a challenge.

“We have an opportunity to lead in this space and I certainly hope other companies find their way into this space,” he said.

Copyright 2022 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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