Name: Siobhan Sullivan
Hometown: Everett, MA
Major: Broadcast Journalism
-How did you know that you wanted to major in broadcast journalism and why did you choose Suffolk for it?
This is such a great question! A lot of people that I’ve connected with in the CJN department (and even those I know at Suffolk in general) don’t know that I actually started off as a Psychology major. I loved psych in high school, but I knew it wasn’t for me once I got to college. I was almost going to transfer second semester freshman year (I got accepted to BU as a neuroscience major), but ultimately, I decided to stay at Suffolk. I took a freshman seminar with a CJN professor my first semester and it was my favorite class! I knew that if I was going to stay at Suffolk then I wanted to be a CJN major. So I looked at what the department had to offer, and broadcast journalism was what I chose – it just stood out from everything else and I wanted to learn more. Clearly I wasn’t ready to choose my career path going into my first semester of college, but declaring myself a broadcast journalism major second semester was one of the best decisions of my life!
-Did anyone in particular inspire you to study broadcast journalism?
I wouldn’t say anyone inspired me, really. It’s actually funny because during my junior year of high school I was giving a speech in my English class and my teacher told me I should either be a reporter or a news anchor. I didn’t think anything of it, but looking back I find that so weird! I guess, also, once I declared myself a broadcast journalism major I watched the news more. I became so infatuated with Diane Sawyer; I listened to the way she spoke, how she effortlessly gave the news. I suppose you could say that Diane Sawyer was one of my role models in the broadcasting world.
-What was the process like of getting the Suffolk in the City position at NECN, and how did you go about it?
Suffolk in the City changed my life! So last Spring I was in a production class with about eight graduating seniors – 2 of which were the current NECN student reporters. During my class’ last show of the semester a few of my classmates told me to audition for Suffolk in the City to which I declined. I’ve never been a confident person (something broadcast majors should be). The thought of going live on TV scared me! Was I ready? Would I look professional? Anyways, a few weeks later I decided to sign up for an audition. I hadn’t heard anything for a few weeks (after my audition), but in June 2014 I got the call that I was chosen as 1 of 2 NECN student reporters! It was one of the best things to happen to me! Although I’m not currently an “active” student reporter with NECN, I still serve as a fill-in, and help out the current reporters who are doing fantastic! Suffolk in the City gave me more self-confidence and really taught me more about my major. It was a great opportunity and I am forever grateful to have had it. Although I will say, my first live shot was horrible, and the tape should be burned… I’ve gotten better, I swear!
-How did the creation of the Temple Street Report come about?
I’m glad you asked! So Temple Street Report is a show that films every Thursday morning in Suffolk’s Studio 73. I actually started it as part of an independent study I’m doing and now we’re working on making it a show that future students can take over. We’re getting better every week. We have two anchors with one reporter (myself and the two other members rotate each week). We have so much help from Studio 73 and we’re currently focusing on the production value so future students can pick up where we leave off when we graduate! But basically TSR is one of the first student run world-news shows, started by students at Suffolk! We just hope that once we get to a point where we can look back and say “that’s it,” (the point where we hit the mark), that we can franchise TSR in the Suffolk community.
-What is it like to choose what material and information is reported about on the Temple Street Report?
Temple Street Report (with the help of studio 73) is run by me and two of my classmates (Olivia and Laura). Each week we rotate roles, so whoever anchors will send me their scripts to put together and edit into the format for the teleprompter. What we aim to do is keep our show 5 minutes or under – we want to give people a quick fix of the week’s biggest stories. Depending on who anchors, we’ll have sports, international, political, entertainment, local, business, etc. We want to give people stories that they may not have heard, in an easy way to understand. And I think one of the best implementations of TSR is that we always end on a good note, whether it is a happy story or a cute video! Being able to deliver the news to a college community (via YouTube) from the voice of college students is, I think, a great opportunity!
-What else are you involved with on campus?
I’m on Suffolk’s speech and debate team, which is a lot of fun, we’re pretty good! I also work in the tutoring center on campus (CLAS). If you’re ever looking for me you can find me in the tutoring center or in Ridgeway – I’m pretty friendly!
-Are you looking forward to graduating later this spring?
-No! Not at all! Haha, no I’m just kidding. I guess more than anything I’m scared. I’m looking forward to it, don’t get me wrong, but when all you know for 16 years of your life is school, not going back is a scary thought. Suffolk has definitely prepared me in the classroom, but having the opportunities like NECN’s Suffolk in the City, Temple Street Report, and my internship in the sports department at Channel 7, has really given me insight into what I’ll be doing for the rest of my life. Honestly, I can’t wait. I’ll miss the college atmosphere, but I am looking forward to entering the “real world”! I can’t believe it’s arriving so fast! Side note: internships are the best thing you can do in college – get as many as you can!
-Do you have any plans yet for after graduation?
I’m currently looking for jobs as a reporter or news anchor. I’m not too keen on moving too far, but I will if need be. I know I’ll probably start small, but I have no problem learning more while working my way up! I wish I was the type of person who travels after graduation (I do want to see the world!), but I’m a workaholic through and through so my main priority is job hunting.
-What has been your favorite part about Suffolk?
I think just meeting people at school has been my favorite. I can honestly say I’ve met some of my best friends here. As well as the connections I’ve made with certain professors – I’m so grateful for the relationships I have with some of them. Apart from meeting people though, another favorite aspect has to be finding myself. I was nervous going to college, I literally got lost on the first day and I’m from just outside of the city! Throughout my time at Suffolk I’ve grown as a person. I’m more confident, less of a doormat, and I’m ready for the world. I had a great time here and although I’m sad it’s my last semester, I wouldn’t change a thing.