The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

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Award-Winning Journalist Gives Advice

Beth Knobel, an Emmy-Award winning journalist, spoke of her career and gave advice to journalism students on Nov. 10.

The College of Professional Studies, Communications professors Dr. Basilio Monteiro and Dr. Minna Aslama, hosted the lecture.
During the lecture, Knobel gave students an insight of her career and gave out tips and advice for aspiring journalists, which had helped her to get to where she is now. She reinforced that students should pick up as many skills as they can while we’re in school.

“Learn to write, learn to interview, learn to shoot a camera, learn to do video editing, learn to run a website; the more skills you have,  in this competitive market, the better,” she said.

In addition, she acknowledged the increase of social media, but emphasized that reading is the key to improving because it helps them to see the big pictureand to be aware of what is going on in the world.

“Read really great writers and try to think about how they put words together or great broadcast writers and look at how they write and how they use their pictures,” Knobel encouraged students.

Knobel reminded students to use networking and to contact alumni for a boost in our journalism career.

“Contact alums and just don’t ask for a job, just sort of say, ‘Hey, how did you get where you are in journalism? What should I know, what should I learn?’ and if you make a good impression, people will want to help you,” she advised students.

She concluded with this last piece of advice, “Work hard. Journalism is 24/7 and it takes really long hours and don’t accept second best. Always work hard and just try to get better with every story you do,” she said.

Knobel has worked for The Los Angeles Times, Worldwide Television News, and a production company called Feature Story News. Upon the start of her career with CBS News, Knobel served as the Moscow Bureau Chief where she supervised news dealing with the former Soviet Union, and later became the Moscow Bureau producer. She covered the hostage in a Moscow theater which earned her an Emmy award.

She is also the co-author of “Heat and Light: Advice for the Next Generation of Journalists,” with CBS newsman Mike Wallace, which serves as a guideline
to aspiring journalists, ranging from ethics to must-know reporting skills.

Knobel is currently an assistant professor at Fordham University, teaching communications and media studies, and is working on her second book which discusses the changes of the convergence of media and the effects it has on watchdog reporting in government.

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About the Contributor
Sarah Yu
Sarah Yu, Chief Copy Editor
As Sarah Yu says she and journalism clicked right away. Her passion for writing is what made her declare journalism as her major and begin her work on The Torch. One day, as she was sitting in the office with little to do, she began to copy edit in order to pass the time. As she continued to copy edit, she grew to love the rules of grammar and syntax. Now she is giddily taking over my position as Chief Copy Editor. Her bubbly personality was a welcome addition to the copy desk this year and will be for the new Editorial Board next year as well. — Sarah Lane Chief Copy Editor, Emeritus
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