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The Beat Hits a New Note at Purchase College and Inspires a Similar Magazine at SUNY Binghamton

The Beat, Issue 2.

The Beat, Issue 2.

The second act is sometimes the toughest. So the challenge facing student staffers at The Beat this semester was to prove that Purchase College’s new music magazine was no one-hit-wonder.

When the second issue came out earlier this month with an eye-popping Culture Shock front cover, engrossing articles, and spectacular images, the message was clear: The Beat is here to stay.

What’s more, their winning formula of a high-quality student-generated arts and culture publication has inspired a similar publication at SUNY Binghamton, called Impact.

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Purchase Brick Staffers Go to College Media Convention in NYC

Journalism Professor Donna Cornachio and Brick staffers Ole Skaar and Sarah Ellis representing SUNY Purchase at a college media convention in New York (Assistant Editor Mike PIazza was at the convention too but not around for the photo)

Journalism Professor Donna Cornachio and Brick staffers Ole Skaar and Sarah Ellis representing SUNY Purchase at a college media convention in New York (Assistant Editor Mike Piazza was at the convention too but not around for the photo)

SUNY Purchase Assistant Professor of Journalism Donna Cornachio took a small crew of Purchase Brick staffers into the city this weekend to represent Purchase and meet the other student journalists and their advisors who poured in from all over the country for the event.

Prof. Cornachio, the proud faculty advisor to The Brick, wrote about their trip in this journoprof guest post:

“This past weekend some editors at The Brick and I took a busman’s holiday and attended the College Media Association’s annual convention at the Sheraton Hotel in Manhattan. Among us, Ole Skaar, editor in chief, Mike Piazza, assistant editor, and Sarah Ellis, photo editor, attended dozens of workshops geared toward students and their advisers who have college newspapers, Websites, broadcast stations and yearbooks.

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Khalil Edney’s Miracle Shot Covered by SUNY Purchase Journalism Student

You may have seen Khalil Edney’s astounding 55-foot buzzer-beating shot in Sunday’s Mt. Vernon v New Rochelle Section 1 Class AA championship game.

But what you may not know is that SUNY Purchase journalism major Jordan Griffith was part of the MSG Varsity team that took the video of that amazing moment and helped it go viral.

SUNY Purchase's Jordan Griffith on camera for MSG Varsity

SUNY Purchase’s Jordan Griffith on camera for MSG Varsity

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Photographer of Iconic 911 Flag-Raising Picture Visits SUNY Purchase, His Alma Mater

Iconic 911 photo by Thomas E. Franklin

Iconic 911 “Heroes” photo by Thomas E. Franklin

Did you know that this famous 911 photograph was taken by a Purchase alum?

Thomas E. Franklin (Class of ’88) was a VA photography student at Purchase and segued into newspaper journalism after graduating as a way to make a living. He’s had an enviable career – just this month he was “outed” as one of the judges for the Pulitzer Prize in journalism, a tremendous honor (that’s supposed to be a secret!). He was back on campus Monday talking to students from the journalism program about his extensive career as an award-winning photojournalist, and fondly recalling his years at Purchase (scroll down to see pictures from back then).

Tom Franklin with journalism students (l to r) Samantha Stone, Tanira Wiggins, Lindsay Wilson and Corinne Santiago.

Tom Franklin with journalism students (l to r) Samantha Stone, Tanira Wiggins, Lindsay Wilson and Corinne Santiago.

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“Mike Piazza Reporting for Howard 100 News.”

MikePIazzapicMike Piazza, a SUNY Purchase journalism major, proudly uttered those very words on the air when his radio story about shadowing a reporter on Howard 100 News was put on SiriusXM during one of their news flashes last year.

(In case you’re wondering, that’s Howard, as in, Howard Stern.)

Mike was recently back at the Howard 100 News offices with some of his intern pals and had this picture taken.

Mike made Howard 100 history, becoming the show’s first intern to name himself on air. Here’s the clip: Mike The Shadow Audio

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Journalism One. Fall 2012. Last Day of Class.

journalism1class2My Journalism 1 class was oozing personality this semester. Can you tell?

There was a hurricane and a snowstorm and a trip to Dateline. We traversed the campus, meeting sometimes in the Natural Science building, sometimes in Library labs, sometimes in Library classrooms.

Through it all they did not complain, filed their stories (most of them), took their news quizzes, and came to class ready to learn, ready to have fun learning.

One student got an internship at Dateline (Johanna Waldron), two students got interviewed for internships at The Trisha Show (Maggi Elgendy and Jessie Pauli), and one student got a story published at thepurchasebrick.com (Hannah Ednie).

A smart bunch. Lots of potential!

Picture courtesy of Corinne Santiago.

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Check Out This Poster! With Art Like That, You Know The Show’s Gotta Be Great!

USGVP POSTER-1Update: I went to see the show and it WAS great. Scott was funny, sincere and touching. Above all, boy can he sing! 

Now THAT looks like a show you want to see, does it not?

That charming young man at the center of it all is one of my students: Scott Galina, a SUNY Purchase Journalism/Drama Studies double major who is doing a one-man show for his senior project.

The enticing poster was designed for him Purchase Graphic Design grad Kevin Burke with Scott’s input.

I’ve known Scott for some years now and he’s always impressed me with his wit, humor, and a writing style that oozes with personality.

No doubt all that will come into play in this piece, the culmination of his years at Purchase.

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Latinos React to the Election and SUNY Purchase Journalism Student Covers it

That right there is SUNY Purchase Journalism student, Sheyla Navarro, looking extremely professional in a wonderful piece she did for Larchmont Mamaroneck Community Television LMC-TV on Latino reaction to the presidential election.

I know, the election’s long over at this point, but my pride in her endures. Sheyla, who likes to be called, Shey, hails from Peru, and since she walked into my Journalism 1 class last year, she’s impressed me with her news instincts and determination.

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SUNY Purchase Journalism Professor Donna Cornachio Discusses Politics On Regional News Network

Donna Cornachio in red on Regional News Network Discussing the Women’s Vote

Far be it from me to question why Regional News Network would have a panel of five men and one woman to discuss the issue of the women’s vote, but at least the woman they invited on there was as sharp as a whip.

That would be my colleague, Assistant Professor of Journalism Donna Cornachio, who was on a segment hosted by Richard French Thursday to discuss recent comments by Indiana Senate candidate Republican Richard Mourdock who said during a debate that “even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that is something that God intended to happen.”

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SUNY Purchase Journalism Student at the Democratic National Convention for NBC

Kyle McKenzie at the Democratic National Convention for NBC

Purchase Journalism senior, Kyle McKenzie, hasn’t even graduated yet and he’s already covered a national political convention. Kyle was down in Charlotte, North Carolina for the Democratic National Convention with NBC as a runner.

If you’ve ever met Kyle, you only have to be in his company for a moment and hear his deep booming voice to know that he’s destined for TV. (He entered Purchase as a student in the prestigious Design/Technology program for Stage Management in the Conservatory of Theater Arts, but, as he says, his heart was in journalism, and made the rare move of switching programs.)

He very kindly took a moment to answer a few journoprof questions in an email exchange:

1) Tell me about your gig at NBC: How you got it, how long you’ve been there, what you do?

I started with NBC last January as an intern on the msnbc show ‘NewsNation w Tamron Hall’. There I learned about every facet of the television news industry from anchor-producing to editorial meetings. From there I heard about an opportunity to serve as a runner for the upcoming political conventions. I talked to the people in charge of coordinating the runners, applied and was selected to work the Democratic National Convention.

2) Describe how you found out that you were going to the DNC.

I was eating out with friends in July of this past summer and decided to check my email real quick on my iPhone. I had an email in my inbox so I checked it thinking it was going to be some piece of spam mail, when it was from NBC informing me I was chosen to work the upcoming convention. As you can imagine, I didn’t end up eating much of my lunch as I was just too excited. I kept checking my email to make sure that I read the email correctly…which I did 🙂

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What?! Your Dad’s An Associated Press Editor? Let’s Bring Him In to Talk at SUNY Purchase!

Kiley Stevens and her dad, Associated Press Albany News Editor Rik Stevens, after his talk in the SUNY Purchase Neuberger Museum Study.

And that’s basically how Associated Press Albany News Editor Rik Stevens ended up talking to a roomful of journalism students today in the SUNY Purchase Neuberger Museum Study about the news industry and the venerable AP.

His daughter, Kiley Stevens, is one of the bright sparks in my Journalism 1 class (which has a number of bright sparks, by the way.) And when she confessed earlier in the semester that her dad was in the news business, I asked if she’d hit him up for a visit. He said yes, and yesterday he put aside the news for a day and schlepped down to Purchase from Albany.

He told the students how the AP was formed (in 1846 by five New York City Newspaper bosses) and how it works (as a not-for-profit cooperative of news organizations.) I was reminded of their great motto: “We get it first, but first we get it right.”

I’ve always admired AP reporters for their precision and speed. They always seem somehow above the competitive madness that can grip the news industry. (They might disagree.) When I was covering breaking news, I always felt they were on my side.

Rik was upbeat about the news industry, which was refreshing. Journalists can be a cynical bunch. He  told some great war stories (including one about the time he saw a wanted criminal drive past a police station while he and a group of journalists and photographers were standing outside, and how he became the subject of the news that day after he alerted the police and helped them reel in a bad guy.)

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A SUNY Purchase Fashionista Blogs About Her Closet and Campus Fashion

The outfits! The nails! The hair! The tattoos! SUNY Purchase students have a reputation for their fashion sense. Take a look at this blog, which captures all the creativity that gets paraded around campus each day.

Click on a picture to see the photos up close.

Alina Suriel started this blog using her nom de plume – Alina Angelica – in my Journalism 1 class last semester and she’s worked hard to keep it going. She calls it her “virtual closet” and blogs about her outfits in photo-oriented posts. She also takes her camera out onto the Mall, around campus, and to parties, creating a digital canvas of the groovy Purchase sartorial scene.

She breezed into my office recently, and I persuaded her to answer some questions about her blog, which she was kind enough to do in a subsequent email exchange:

1) When did you start the blog and what was the idea behind it?

I started the blog about 4 months ago in your class. I had been meaning to blog for a while, and so sitting through a whole lesson about blogging was a great kickstart to that. This blog is a virtualization of something I would do when I was younger to keep track of my outfits. I would keep lists of the individual components of the outfit (black cowboy boots, striped blue shirt, etc) on index cards, as a reference if I ever didn’t know what to wear. In my blog when I post about myself  I still list the things I wear as tags which link back to other things I’ve worn with that item.

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The Power of a Blog Post: How SUNY Purchase Journalism Alum Meghan Lalonde Wrote About, Met Freed “West Memphis Three” Death Row Inmate

Meghan Lalonde (second from left) and Damien Echols of the West Memphis Three (second from right). That's her professor on the far left and a classmate on the far right. (Photo courtesy of Meghan Lalonde.)

This is a really interesting story of how Meghan Lalonde (Class of 2010) wrote a blog post, one thing lead to another, and before she knew it she and a group of her New York Law School classmates were at the apartment of Damien Echols, the most famous of the West Memphis Three, having tea and cookies.

As you may know, the West Memphis Three were wrongfully convicted of murdering three 8-year-old boys in West Memphis, Arkansas in 1993. They served 18 years before their conviction was overturned and they were freed in August. Their case was the subject of a series of Paradise Lost documentaries and a Peter Jackson entry at the Sundance Film Festival.

Meghan, who is in the Law and Journalism program, wrote about the case in a carefully researched blog post The West Memphis Three: An A-Z List of Justice Gone Wrong for her class blog  Legal As She Is Spoke.

Echols, who spent years on death row, liked the post and agreed to meet Meghan and her class. You can tell from her email that it blew her mind!

“It was absolutely surreal. Damien personally thanked me for writing about the case and did the same with another girl who also wrote about it, and gave each of us a hug and a kiss. My professor was losing her mind…Damien was so nice that he brought my professor and I and a few other students over to his apartment afterwards for tea and cookies.”
Meghan’s piece is a painstaking look at the various details of what she says is a gross miscarriage of justice, including the interesting Alford Plea, which, as Meghan’s post notes, “allows a criminal defendant to plead guilty without admitting guilt and maintaining innocence while still acknowledging that prosecutors have enough ‘evidence’ for a conviction.”
 
 
Great story, Meghan!
 

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SUNY Purchase Journalism Alum Matt Caputo Got Published in Penthouse. Oh Yes He Did!

It’s a great story about a crew of shoplifters who earn six figures boosting expensive electronics. Matt Caputo (Class of 2007) is such an engaging writer and the reporting is impressive. Matt is even with the thieves in a store one day as they steal laptops.

He uses fake names, which is inevitable in a story like this, but the trade-off means the reader gets amazing insight into how these guys commit their crimes:

“Here are some tricks of the trade they’ve developed over time: Never spend more than 15 minutes in one store. Change cars as often as possible by complaining to the rental service about squeaky brakes or weak airconditioning, etc. Pay for everything in cash. If you get pulled over, crack the screen of your GPS to erase the device’s history. Blend into your surroundings: If this means donning hunting gear in Colorado or posing as surfers in Santa Cruz, so be it.”

Matt is Assistant Editor at Maxim Magazine and  has written for the New York Times, Penthouse, Men’s Fitness, SLAM, VIBE and The New York Daily News. He’s also been an editor at The Daily News and SLAM. Despite what you may think about Penthouse, they have a reputation for paying well and publishing great stories that have nothing to do with pornography.

Matt was kind enough to answer a few questions about the piece in an email interview:

1) You are class of ??

Officially class of 2007, but I walked in 2006. Damn senior project.

2)  How’d you find the guys you focus on in your piece?

When I finished college in 2006, I briefly moved back to the Queens Blvd area where I grew up. I ran into old friends in a barbershop and I was introduced to Steven Steals in the fall of that year and was told the short of how he came to have such a nice car, wads of cash, pounds of weed and even a legitimate business for a while. As time passed, mutual friends kept me up to date on their sprees and also about the stuff Steven and his friends had gotten them at a cheap rate. I arranged to meet Steven alone for the first time at a pizzeria in 2011 and he was very willing to be interviewed and have me ride along once. I mean, it was practically his idea.

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