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Journalism visits Asbury Park Press

by BRIANNA SICILIANO Photo/Video Editor

The Falconer’s Voice staff took their second field trip of the year on October 24, 2013 to get a feel of a day in a newsroom at the Asbury Park Press in Neptune, New Jersey.

The Journalism classes took an educational field trip to Asbury Park Press to observe what editors do day-by-day in the real world. We left MTHS at 8am to see firsthand what professional journalists really do.

When we arrived to APP’s facility, Kathleen Abatemarco, the Senior Human Resources Business Partner, welcomed us to the building and gave our class an overview of what our class was about to witness.

As a group, our class observed the APP’s editorial meeting. While many of us were expecting a large, boring room with a conference table and chairs, we were pleasantly surprised to watch the editors participate in their meeting while lounging comfortably in a relaxing setting.

After allowing our staff to look at Thursday, October 24’s paper, we listened as the different editors spoke about new observations, updates, and stories that each person has found.

Newspapers do not only consist of one section, they consist of many. Different editors have different jobs. In APP, there is a person who covers social media, another who covers breaking news, another covering multimedia, etc. At the editors’ meeting, the journalists spoke about what is currently happening and is successful.

“To me, the most interesting part of the trip to APP was sitting in on their meeting and learning how each person works together to create one newspaper,” said sophomore Danielle Mizrahi.

Observing the meeting gave The Falconer’s Voice staff interesting insight about Journalism in the real world. Newspapers are currently struggling with technology. People are using handheld devices, like iPhones and iPads, instead of physical papers, so how does a newspaper make money off of free articles that are available to be accessed online?

“Eighty percent of our revenue comes from the dead trees,” said Hollis R. Towns, Executive Editor.

Editors at APP understand that video is the future, which is why the company is spending more time morphing articles into videos.

A big day for the paper was Sunday, October 27, which focused on Super Storm Sandy one year later.

Our class was shown a two minute video of the upcoming coverage. The video shows interviews of different people who have been affected by Sandy, the damage as it was happening, how drastically the Shore was affected, and homes and buildings that are finally being rebuilt.

Along with the video, the front page of the section features another visual that catches the reader’s eyes.

“I found it interesting how everyone had a say in the paper’s cover, even if it did not relate to their area of work,” said freshman Mariah Thompson.

The front page shows an image of the roller-coaster in the ocean. Behind the roller-coaster is the sun rising, symbolizing hope for the shore.

“[The sun rise behind the roller coaster] shows [the shore] may be beaten down, but not done,” said Towns.

Sadly, the editor’s meeting came to an end and the journalists got back to work. The editors meet two to three times each day to update one another about what has changed and to discuss new stories.

Before we left the facility, we were informed about the newspaper’s involvement in Make A Difference day, which took place on October 26. Members of the paper took part in a Basketball Game at a local high school and rebuilt a butterfly garden at North Brunswick High School.

Overall, the trip to APP gave The Falconer’s Voice staff great insight into what they are to expect if they pursue careers in Journalism in the real world.

What do you think about APP’s coverage of Super Storm Sandy one year later? Check out the articles and videos at!

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