By Jeff Cronin
This semester, Temple Update might feature reports from the shadow of Toyko Tower or the banks of the Thames. The weekly student news broadcast has gone global.
Foreign correspondents will report from London and Tokyo this semester to showcase the experience of Temple students studying abroad.
“Our goal is for viewers to gain insight into the life of Temple students when their campus is in another country,” said Paul Gluck, associate professor of media studies and production and general manager of TUTV – Temple Television.
Update welcomed its first overseas reporters last semester when students Rob Monroe and Mariana Zimmerman captured stories in London. This semester, film and media arts major KaRa Dorman and media studies and production major Jade Jarvis, both juniors, will report from London, while Adam Glazer, a junior film and media arts major, will report from Tokyo.
Their regular coverage will have a Temple angle, showing how Owls are thriving in their homes away from home, but when global news warrants, Gluck said the students could also expand the scope of their stories. Each week, the students will video chat with Gluck and Peter Jaroff, assistant professor of media studies and production and executive producer of Temple Update. The students will pitch stories and, with the guidance of their professors back on Main Campus, will plan what video to capture and who to interview to best tell the story.
“It really adds a new aspect to our show. The best thing TV can do is to take viewers to a place they haven’t been or may never go to,” Jaroff said. “These reports give Temple Update a greater range of coverage and topics.”
Stories from London and Toyko will run on alternating weeks and, by the end of the semester, four or five reports will have been filed from each city. Like last semester, Jaroff hopes to have the students report live via Skype for their final stories of the year.
The Temple Update stories are above and beyond the work the students are doing as part of their normal academic work abroad. They will each receive a stipend from TUTV and the Kal and Lucille Rudman Media Production Center.
“The students have the opportunity to enhance their production skills while studying abroad, an experience they can’t acquire in North Philadelphia,” Gluck said. “Not all of the rules are the same in a foreign country.”
Watch Mariana and Rob’s report on a London tour centered around Jack the Ripper.
Picking the right story
One of the first stories Jarvis hopes to tell is how Temple students are adapting to London. “We’ve all been experiencing certain degrees of culture shock, and the experience really isn’t the same for any two people,” said the future broadcast journalist from Norristown, Pa.
As an FMA major, Dorman hopes to hone her production, cinematography and storytelling skills. And she’s up for the challenge of producing short-form stories for the news broadcast.
“News stories are short and direct, but I will try to compose as much of the city and culture as possible into about 90 seconds,” she said. “The limitations will be a great test for me in learning to separate the essential and non-essential ideas.”
Dorman hopes to highlight London’s film industry in one of her Temple Update pieces. “I am excited to learn of the history, how the industry has evolved and what the future holds for filmmakers in the U.K.”
While Jarvis and Dorman will be working as a team, Glazer, of Bethesda, Md., is a one-man crew in Toyko.
Glazer was interested in the Temple Update opportunity because of his passion for travel shows and documentaries. He felt his work as a foreign correspondent would give him a first-hand peek into what it would be like to produce those types of stories for a living. He’s still narrowing down his story ideas, “but I think a story on the Tsukiji fish market will be interesting. They begin auctioning off the freshly caught fish to restaurants and food buyers at 5 a.m.”
Lesson: Be prepared
Zimmerman, the media studies and production major who reported from London during the fall semester, says she learned a lot during her time there, most importantly to bring her camera everywhere.
“There were a few times in the beginning where we were out as a class and we realized, ‘Ah we should have brought the camera, this shot would have been perfect!’ By the end, though, we brought the camera everywhere—outings and events around London, we brought it to classes and even on the bus,” she said.
Another life lesson from the experience? Efficiency.
“My partner Rob and I both had internships while we were over there and also took a full semester-load of classes. On top of that we also had trips planned and other events so we had to learn quickly how to manage our time,” Zimmerman said. “It was up to us to plan every story, shoot it, edit it and have it turned in by the deadline and I think at first it was a bit overwhelming trying to get everything done. But we quickly learned to work efficiently together and plan and manage our time.”
The first Temple Update of the semester airs Feb. 20 on TUTV, available within Philadelphia on Comcast channel 50 and Verizon channel 45 or online at templetv.net.