A Passion for Broadcast
For most university students, summer is a time to relax and get away from the hustle of the school year, but not for junior corporate communications major, Konner McIntire. Konner uses the summer as a time to gain experience in the TV industry. This past summer, Konner interned at a news broadcasting station, KSN/KODE.
By networking with a contact of her father, Konner met Toni Valliere, an anchor for KODE. They met at a local Starbucks, where Konner discussed what she wanted to do in the future. At the end of the meeting, Toni gave Konner the contact information for the head producer.
“It was a very informal hire, so I learned that it’s pretty simple for a smaller market; bigger markets have a more extensive hiring process” said Konner.
Konner also said that her classes at MNU helped to prepare her for this opportunity.
“My business communications class really helped to prepare me for the initial meeting,” Konner says. “I knew how to dress and how to present myself in a meeting. I was prepared with questions for Toni and I knew that I should offer to pay for her drink.”
By following various reporters throughout the summer, Konner says she learned a lot about TV news. For example, evening reporters at KSN/KODE have to write three stories a day. They begin each day at 9 a.m. and start to develop stories. At a meeting with a producer, each reporter pitches their stories for approval. After the meeting, they hunt down contact, schedule and then conduct interviews. This sometimes means the reporter has to drive several hours to complete one story. If there are no cameramen available, the reporter might also need to shoot the footage, while also conducting the interview. Once they finish the interview, the reporter then goes back to the studio to write the story, edit film, create voiceovers, and write the anchor’s script.
“All of this has to be completed by 5 p.m.” Konner stated.
She started out the same day as a new reporter, so Konner was able to follow the reporter throughout the summer. “It was fun to watch the transition from being new and trying to figure things out, to seeing her understand everything in the station,” remarked Konner.
Some reporters gave Konner a chance to shoot a tease, a part of the news that gives a snapshot of an upcoming story. She also got a chance to practice writing voice-over-scripts, which were difficult at times. “I would be given an article from a newsletter or a newspaper and then had to condense it into 30 or 45 second script. I did those just for fun, but an actual reporter would give the script to the anchor, who would then proof and give feedback to the reporter.” Konner also spent time with the anchors, watch the afternoon show, observe in the control rooms, and helped with some editing.
Since Konner had the chance to follow various reporters, she described one of her most memorable outings. One reporter, Jennifer Penate, received a phone call about a group of Conestogas travelling from Ft. Scott, Kan. Jennifer and Konner had to drive all the way to Arcadia, Kan. to find the group of wagons. After finding them driving on the road, they shot film and then headed to the town hall to conduct some interviews. Konner said that it seemed as if the entire town showed up for a chance to be on the news.
“Each day was something different; I was able to meet new people,” Konner shared. She also said that her passion is to inform people on the news.
“I think that ignorance is so dangerous, so I think that it is important to inform people about things happening in the world. I want to bring a different perspective to media.”
This year, Konner is involved with the Associated Student Government as the director of student ministries. She says that she has learned how to manage her time and how to relate to other people’s passions. She is also taking various journalism classes and is completing a directed study by filming her own talk show. Konner uses MNU’s TV studio to record her show and it is broadcasted by TV2.
Konner said that her internship helped her learn what steps she needs to take to get into broadcast journalism and how to write broadcast news.
“It was interesting to see how reporters wrote the news and to see what producers look for in a story,” said Konner.