Jianni Burnett: Focusing on a journey

By Jenn Cirigliano
Mepham High School

Sixteen-year-old Jianni Burnett caught the journalism bug earlier this year after taking a media course at Scholars’ Academy in Rockaway Park in Queens.

During the class, she took on such positions as director and floor manager for multimedia projects to help keep herself busy with something she loved and also to learn more about journalism to help her in the future.

Her media teacher, Michael Pepe, described her as “a young woman who has a keen interest and passion for journalism that can be shown through her hard work and dedication.” She has the ability to be everywhere in the room at once, he said, and she helped anyone she could and tackled any obstacle in her way.

The class would help to live stream and video tape graduations, celebrations, school productions and other events around the school. Jianni also helped shoot and interview elected officials about their daily jobs and things that needed to be done to improve community safety for the family’s living there.

Jianni is inspired by her parents to keep developing her knowledge and interest in journalism.

“I’m inspired by the people around me every day,” she said. “In my house journalism is around me. My parents watching the news and also reading the papers, giving us interesting topics to talk about at the dinner table.”

Jianni has developed an interest in places around the world and her dream is to be able to travel. She said she hopes the knowledge she gains through The Robert W. Greene Summer Institute for High School Journalists will motivate her desire to travel.

“Say you need to interview someone — they won’t always be able to respond and do the interview. But I’m learning that’s okay, and you can have other participants or find other willing people.”

Jianna said she also has a keen interest in writing poetry. She uses this skill to write about problems, express her feelings and increase her skills in writing.

Although she doesn’t know what her future holds, or have a set interest on certain colleges, Jianni’s mother, Marjorie Burnett, has seen an enormous growth in her writing and editing skills beginning in 8th grade.

In addition, her mother said, “Jianni has an amazing personality and strong caring ability for the people close to her.”

Now, going into junior year, Jianni is already looking for her next opportunity to advance her knowledge in journalism. For her, this includes social media.

“Social media is a wide platform so you can get word out there,” she said. “Photography is a big part of journalism, and … I know a lot of journalists and photographers promote their work that way.”

She said she will be taking AP English next year because of her academic ability in her English-based classes every year.

“I’m excited to make progress in my journalism journey and can’t wait to take on the challenge of an AP English class next year.”

Snapshot of my time at Greene

Today marks the full second day of my time here at Greene. I feel simultaneously tired but happy. I am adjusting to dorm life nicely, but sleeping is still an issue I hope to fix as I want to be awake for the big game tomorrow. I love the commoraderie of dorm life, and how everyone is bonding. Each night is capped off with fun conversations between my hallway neighbors and I’m always laughing.

I love how hands-on the Greene team has allowed me to be. I had never used a professional camera before I came here, and I was worried at first. But Mr. Williams was so upbeat and fun and he made a lesson that was technical, engrossing and funny. What’s great about learning about this type of technology is that we get to use it right after. We took pictures all around the campus and it’s been so fun gaining skills and seeing myself grow in terms of what I’m able to capture.

I also learned how to use a camcorder and tripod. The tripod was more confusing than I had originally expected, but it was fun to learn and play around with. I also really loved shooting video and transitioning from a wide shot to a tight shot.

I am already learning a lot during my time here, and I have had my eyes open to factions of news that I had never even considered. I’m excited to dive in even further and collaborate with my team to produce pieces we will all be proud of.

 

Greene Gazette 2018: Day Two

The Greene Program has been off to a great start. For the past two days, we’ve been immersed into the world of news. From writing, photography, video, and eventually audio tracking, we’ll have done it all.

 Yesterday and today, we’ve been working on priming our photography skills, learning about patterns, the depth of a picture, and taking news and feature shots. We’ve also focused on news etiquette and the importance of visuals matching words.

Even though it’s only been two days, it’s amazing how much information I’ve retained. There’s so much more to learn, and I can’t wait to share it all with my family, friends, and the newspaper staff at my school.

 

 

 

Learning about conducting a perfect interview

Waking up at 6 A.M. today did not feel so good. However, after eating a quick breakfast, my brain finally had some power to push through the day.

We went to the newsroom for the first time this morning and began learning all things regarding interviewing. Something that caught my eye that I wrote down during the lesson was to always take notes during an interview so you don’t ever have to rely on your recording. Zach said recorders are not always reliable 100 percent of the time. Plus, it takes a good deal of time to transcribe recordings.

Another thing that I took note of was to always be a gracious host when conducting interviews. We watched a video on Katie Couric, a well-known and respected reporter, discuss how she conducts the perfect interview. She said that she always tries to act warm and friendly when meeting her subject. However, Couric said she changes her tone and the way she speaks depending on who the subject is.