WRAL Hosts 3rd Annual Group of Students in CBC-UNC Diversity Fellowship Program

2015 CBC-UNC Diversity Fellows

The 2015 CBC-UNC Diversity Fellows on set at WRAL.

Future journalists from across the country participated in the third annual CBC-UNC Diversity Fellowship program last week. The students were selected by a team from Capitol Broadcasting Co. and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

This year’s group produced stories on a wide variety of topics ranging from the high cost of college tuition to the boom in the craft beer industry in Raleigh. These talented journalists collaborated in groups and also worked individually to craft stories and eventually produce two different newscasts.

They had a lot of help from WRAL professionals and UNC-Chapel Hill journalism faculty and alumni in workshops at WRAL-TV and UNC.

Richard Adkins, Dave McCorkle, Robert Meikle, Rick Armstrong, Jay Jennings and Andrew Cumbee worked with the fellows on their television stories and live shots. Angie Basiouny coached the fellows on the Web version of their stories. Stephanie Beck and Amanda Nembhard spent time one-on-one with the producers to create the fellowship newscasts.

Aaron Thomas

CBC-UNC Fellow Aaron Thomas on a live shot.

Assistant News Director Aysu Basaran organized the program on behalf of CBC.

“I’m proud of our commitment to diversity in our field and of our passion to help those who are just getting started in this tough business,” Basaran said.

Anisah Jabar, a 2014 fellow and former WRAL-TV news production assistant, served as the program coordinator and liaison between the station, the university and the fellows.

Each year, the program solicits feedback with the hope of making improvements.

“I heard from many of the students who have been exposed to a variety of television stations through other internships,” Steve Hammel, vice president and general manager of WRAL-TV and FOX 50, said.  “Each one said the same thing: They have never seen another TV station’s staff be so caring, warm and professional as ours. The fellows were amazed at how much our team cared about their professional development. ”

Rick Gall & Alexis Simmons

WRAL-TV News Director Rick Gall coaches CBC-UNC Fellow Alexis Simmons.

Hammel initiated and developed the CBC-UNC Diversity Fellowship.

One fellow surveyed about the program wrote, “Feedback was honest and constructive, and I gained insight and experience that I hadn’t received anywhere else.”

The 2015 class of CBC-UNC Diversity Fellows represented UNC-Chapel Hill, North Carolina Central University and North Carolina State University, the University of Florida, Howard University, Arizona State, University of Southern California, University of Maryland and Cal State.

See the newscasts and individual stories from the fellowship here:

If you’d like to learn more and spread the word about the program, here’s additional information:

Thanks to WRAL-TV’s Aysu Basaran for this capcom story & for these capcom photos.

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