There’s nothing like a bit of star power to add some zing to a field trip. So when Chris Hansen emerged into the corridors of Dateline’s offices to press the flesh of some very excited SUNY Purchase Journalism 1 students yesterday, I knew the field trip had just gone from great to fantastic.
I had to smile when someone called out,”Thanks for catching all those predators, Chris.” (Was that you, Corinne?) Hansen, a Dateline correspondent, known for the hugely popular series “To Catch A Predator” was extremely charming and spent some time talking to the students about journalism and his job. He gamely posed for endless photographs, which really seemed to be the highlight of the trip.
There were some other highlights. We toured some of the NBC sets: Saturday Night Live, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and The Dr. Oz Show. We also took turns pretending to be Lester Holt seated at the anchor’s chair in the studio.
The whole outing was put together by my pal, Allison Orr, who’s a senior producer at Dateline. She gave the group the scoop on NBC’s prestigious Page program as well as an explanation of her job and what it takes to get there. And she handed me the card of their internship co-ordinator.
We gave Allison a Purchase “Think Wide Open” T-shirt as a modest token of our undying gratitude to her. We also have intern Chloe Nouvelle to thank for shepherding us around for the two hours we were there.
We finally emerged from NBC into the crazy tourist-tree-skating rink scene right on the doorstep of the NBC studios at 30 Rockefeller Center and skedaddled on over to Pronto Pizza for some slices and sodas courtesy of a Student Engagement Grant from Purchase College.
The intrepid field trippers were Pete Dowd, Hannah Ednie, Cassandra Coppola, Lindsay Wilson, Tanira Wiggins, David Reyes, Corinne Santiago, Angela Jordan, Tanya Thompson, Jessie Pauli and Johanna Waldron.
Thanks to Corinne for the use of some of her photos in this post.
Check out some of the other trips I’ve done with my classes here.