Media students tackle development stories

By Yumi Tala’ave and Jiezhen Va’a N.U.S. ,

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ASKING THE QUESTIONS: Journalism students put theory to practise in Savai’i.

ASKING THE QUESTIONS: Journalism students put theory to practise in Savai’i.

Ensuring future media practitioners and journalists are exposed to covering community development in the rural areas has always been the aim of the N.U.S. Media and Journalism class field trip every year.

Ranging from finding good sources to writing news about certain events or profiling a community are some of the key elements to connecting student journalists of what is being taught in the classroom and the real world.

 The study field trip of the Media and Journalism has exposed students to the challenges that they face while being a journalist. 

A report of different news items are to be prepared by all students and to be submitted before every deadline – which is immediately after an assignment on site or for production materials to be submitted on the same week. 

The tour programme of the media and journalism department was planned for weeks. It is a journey from Upolu to Savai’i. For the first time, the trip is held for four days due to a range of topics being covered by both diploma and degree students.

 On the 24th August 2018, we went around the island collecting news items and witnessing each scene. 

We covered stories at Tafua about the Coconut Oil and the Crater in between. Everyone participated in both events even though few students are responsible to write news about it. 

It was a great experience for the students to actually broaden their knowledge and ability of writing news in a form of print news and filming. The aim of choosing the stories of Tafua was to find out how the economy of Savaii grows from small family business and how the village benefits from the crater.

The second story we covered was at Salelologa, interviewing owners of small business owners on their thoughts of Savaii hosting the Miss Samoa Pageant and how it impacts on them. 

It was recalled that everyone was excited and looking forward to attend the Miss Samoa Pageant. It also motivates them to produce more to cater for the tourist and people of both islands, with the intention to earn more income.

It was a long day interviewing people and taking shots at particular scenes and the tour decided to have a lunch break at Jet Over Hotel. We had a great time sharing experiences while enjoying our delicious meal. After an hour break we headed to Asaga village for an update on the launching of Asaga’s new beach fale.  We discover different culture businesses and how they can contribute in the economy growth of Savaii.

It has come to the end of the last story for the day and we headed back to Silia’s Lagoon Motel where the tours are camping. It was an enjoyable moment to erase classroom boredom and creating bond with people we meet on the way. 

The expected outcome for this tour includes students being enthusiastic in what they do and be comfortable in approaching their source. On the other hand, the student is also expected to write stories of their own that can influence the mind of the public.  At the end of the field trip everyone should be aware of what to do in a real life situation as a journalist, reporting on different types of news story. The field trip also helps enhance communication skills of each media students and prepared them for future career.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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