MURRAY, Ky. — When an injury sidelined John Morris from his dream of playing four years of college football, he decided to look at the positives.
Morris, of Nashville, Tennessee, chose to use his year as a chance to earn experience in his fields of television production and journalism. With his athletic schedule for the past three years, he had not had opportunities beyond the classroom to gain experience he needed for his career.
That all changed with the opportunity afforded to him through the 2017 StudioXperience internship through Waskul.tv at the National Association of Broadcasters conference, held in late April in Las Vegas. Morris was one of five students chosen to participate as production interns through a national application process. The application required Morris to write an essay that outlined why he wanted to intern as well as a recommendation letter from a professor.
“It meant a lot, especially to be fortunate enough to represent Murray State,” Morris said. “I was one of five in the country selected for this, and it meant a lot to know what Murray State has given me.”
During the weeklong trade show, Morris ran camera, edited video and audio and interviewed one of Waskul.tv’s leaders.
“As far as the expectations of what they asked us to do, I felt very well prepared,” Morris said.
Morris graduated in May with a bachelor’s degree. His major was television production with a minor in journalism. Morris made business cards before his internship to brand himself as a multimedia journalist and hopes to land a job soon. He praised the Murray State television production and journalism sequences for preparing him with the current technology for video production and multiplatform journalism. As the internship neared the end, Waskul.tv leaders asked him if he would mind helping on camera and allowed him to do interviews.
“You’ve got to be able to multitask,” Morris said.
Besides the hands-on experience at the NAB show, Morris said the networking helped him make connections that he otherwise may not have made. Television industry leaders visited the booth at the show.
Leigh Wright, assistant professor of journalism, nominated Morris for the internship. She said she thought of him when she saw the call for the internship through the Broadcast Education Association and decided to nominate him.
“John has had an incredible work ethic in my classes,” she said. “I knew the project would be completed. And when the project became stressful near the deadline, John always reassured the class that everything would come together. He’s an excellent team player, and we have to have that in newsrooms.”