Student Profile

22 08 2011

1.      Your name

 Grant Fisken

 2.      Class rank

 Junior (3rd year)

 3.      Major

 Journalism at Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen, Scotland

 4.      Writing and previous media experience (include college courses, internships, work on high school, college and/or professional publications)

 Spent a number of days doing work experience at Scottish Television.  Spent most of last year working as a Sports Reporter for a local radio station in Aberdeen (Original 106 FM) covering mainly Aberdeen FC soccer matches.  This involved gathering post-match audio from players and managers both individually and in press conferences.

 Also, I have done a variety of news and feature writing modules at my home university as well as modules in broadcast journalism, audio production, photojournalism and web design.

 5.      How do you get your news and information about what’s going on in the world, in the country, in Knoxville, or on UT campus?

 At home in Scotland I get my news from a number of sources.  For world news I tend to read the Daily Telegraph and use the BBC website.  For sports news I regularly tune in to Sky Sports News (a rolling 24-hour sports news channel) and read the Scottish Sun.  For local news I read the Evening Express (a North-East Scotland newspaper).

 While at UT, I get nearly all my news from the Internet.  However, both at home and here I have found myself using mobile phone apps more and more to check the news.

 6.      Do you think it is important to follow the news? Why or why not?

 It is essential to follow the news because it is integral to my major.

 7.      What issues are most important to you? Why?

 The two main areas of news I like to focus on are sport and world affairs.  I always check sports news first because that is my passion and that is the area of journalism I would eventually like to work in.  I follow world affairs because I have travelled a lot and am interested to know what is going on in different countries and in different cultures.

 8.      What connections, if any, have you noticed between world events and your own life, family, friends or community?

 Events that have happened in places you have visited or lived in take on greater significance as you can relate to them more easily (eg – 7/7 London bombings).  Also, my girlfriend works in the oil industry and covers Africa and Mexico so events in these places take on greater significance (eg – she was in Gabon during civil unrest and some of her colleagues have been hugely affected by the uprising in Libya).

 9.      What questions or concerns do you have about how the media in general reports stories?

 The main issue in the UK at the moment is the ongoing phone-hacking scandal involving newspapers which is likely to have a huge impact on the way the media is portrayed by the public.  Also, there seems to be a growing trend for stories that originate from Twitter posts which I think is leading to lazy journalism and a lot of material that is not newsworthy – a lot of it seems to be veering towards PR than journalism.

 10.  What do you need to learn in this course?

 I would like to learn more about the growing potential for online journalism and the key advantages and disadvantages that web journalism presents from the more traditional news formats.

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