A culinary discovery and jam-packed agenda

Sushi available at the Emporium. Photo by Lauren Hicks. (July 20, 2018)

Oh my God! I think I might’ve found the best thing to eat in the dining hall, and I’m pretty disappointed I didn’t find out about it before. Sushi. It’s funny, because I kept seeing people with trays of sushi in the cafeteria and I kept wondering, “Where did they find that?” When I first walked into the Emporium, across from the cafeteria, I immediately saw the sushi and knew I just had to buy it.

Anyway, enough about sushi. So far, today has been packed—from visiting Newsday, where we toured the newsroom and talked to journalists there to the press conference at the Long Island Ducks game—I just realized how long a day could really be. If Cathrine and Zach can fit all these events into one single day, I can definitely learn to be more productive with my own time.

Emily Bishop: Already an award-winning writer

By Lauren Nicks
Baldwin High School

Emily Bishop’s passion for writing piqued her interest in journalism as a potential career.

“My school doesn’t have any journalism classes, but I’ve always loved writing,” said Bishop, a 17-year-old student at The Stony Brook School.

Her passion led to her joining the school’s Journalism Club. It was during those after-school Journalism Club meetings where Bishop realized that writing was the perfect career for her.

“The idea of myself reading and reporting news to the student body was amazing,” she said. “I liked that. That’s where I’m comfortable. I like being in front of people and telling stories.”

Emily’s talent for journalism is widely noticed by her family, most notably her mother, Cheryl Bishop.

“Emily has loved all stories from a young age and was an avid reader even in elementary school,” Ms. Bishop said. “She wrote some outstanding essays then and had a poem selected for publication in a local community newspaper. I think that emboldened her to say she really enjoyed writing and considered it as a possible career.”

While Emily possesses superior writing skills − demonstrated by her annual winning of The Stony Brook School Writing Contest − her mother believes her curiosity makes her a good fit for journalism.

“She understands writing and has demonstrated capability,” Cheryl said. “She has done well in photography at school and enjoys it, but sometimes she is curious about how she could possibly become a host on the Today Show.”
Both Emily and her mother Cheryl believe that the Robert W. Greene Summer Institute at Stony Brook University is the perfect opportunity for Emily to gain insight on the inner workings of news organizations.

“The Stony Brook program appears to capture beginning to end of communicating in front of and behind the camera,” Cheryl said. “So I hope this helps Emily decide what area she might prefer or if journalism is even the best field for her to express herself.”

The week-long program Emily and other aspiring journalists are about to embark on is designed to provide training in skills that are necessary to the field of journalism. It will also allow students to meet and network with media professionals.

“I’m looking forward to a hands-on experience in tech and broadcast,” Emily said. “That’s something I don’t know anything about.”

Emily is also a ballet dancer. She has trained for over 10 years, and watched performances by famous companies such as the American Ballet Theatre at Lincoln Center.

While journalism isn’t Emily’s only topic of interest, she said it is the one that keeps calling her back. Emily believes that by attending the Greene Institute, she’ll discover if journalism is truly the career for her. She’s also keen on studying history and French in college, but she would really love to give journalism a shot.

“No matter what, I’d like to continue working on writing,” she said. “For me, writing is just something that comes naturally. I found my niche and became really comfortable about my writing, and it’s felt like that ever since.”

Lauren Nicks: Writing to make a difference

By Emily Bishop
The Stony Brook School

Acting was Lauren Nicks’ passion through middle and high school. However, during preparations for her eighth-grade performance in “Bye Bye Birdie,” she realized that she wasn’t as interested in acting as she was with the popularity that it offered.

“I started to look at acting as superficial, and I wanted to do something that would actually mean something to people and could actually help,” she said.

The 17-year-old senior at Baldwin High School looked to be a positive influence in her community. Friends and family suggested she consider becoming a journalist, so she began considering the possibility. The idea took hold while she was watching a news report two years ago.

“I was sitting at the dining room table, and there was this story on ABC News with Diane Sawyer,” Lauren said. “And she was in a different country, in the Middle East, and I was like ‘You know, I think I kind of want to do something like that. Go overseas, meet new people, and hear their stories.’ ”

Lauren was inspired to join her school newspaper, The Golden Wave, and eventually became a layout editor. There she not only developed her abilities as a photographer but also interviewed people and learned valuable listening skills.

“I’ve read her article on Black Lives Matter, and one thing I can say about her is that she is very involved in finding the truth and making sure often ignored stories are heard,” said her mom, Nakesha Nicks. She also praised Lauren’s curiosity and drive, qualities that she believes make Lauren a good fit for a career in journalism. Lauren says her parents have always supported her journalistic journey, as has her younger brother, Justin.

Lauren says that the main reason for her pursuit of journalism comes from her desire to connect with people and share their lives with the world. “What I really like is getting to know people, getting to hear their stories, getting to spread their stories, stories that need to be heard,” she said.

When one of her teachers set up a TV studio, Lauren was thrilled to be a part of that as well. Whether standing in front of a screen or delivering her school’s morning announcements for “Good Morning Baldwin,” she was delighted to be gaining more journalism experience.

Beside journalism, Lauren’s main interest is reading. As a child, she was mesmerized by the Harry Potter books and claims that reading those stories fostered her English skills and pushed her to become a better writer. She continues to search for books that transport her to different worlds and engage her imagination.

When Lauren learned about Stony Brook University’s Robert W. Greene Summer Institute for High School Journalists, she applied because she believed it would improve her writing and networking skills.

Lauren knows she would like to attend New York University, but she is unsure about whether to pursue journalism in college. She hopes her week with the Greene Team will make her decision easier.

“I’m going to figure out if it’s something that I want to pursue later on,” she said. “Other people have been telling me that I was a good fit for journalism, but being here, I want to find it out for myself.”

An early start …

I love to sleep. I know it sounds weird but I can literally sleep off and through anything. To switch to a schedule where I wake up at 5:00 in the morning every day is totally different than what I’m used to, however it definitely has its perks. No one’s up. I can shower, get dressed and do everything else with no interruptions. No arguments over the shower, no moving my bags over for sink space. At 5:00 it feels as if the whole floor is mine. The first day with the Greene Team I felt so bad, because I was struggling to keep my eyes open. My sleep schedule was so messed up, but now that my body seems to be adapting. I feel up and energized for the day.

Anyway, if I had to rate my time here at Stony Brook so far out of ten it would earn a solid 9.2. I’ve learned so much in just one day. It’s funny how you think you know so much about a topic, but when you actually sit and talk with media professionals you discover you really didn’t know that much after all. I’m looking forward to the days to come, especially Wednesday when we visit Newsday.

 

Is this really for me?

I’ve never been one of those people that easily pick up a passion, and it seems like most of the things I develop an interest for quickly die. Actually, being in this program makes me fear that I’ll discover that journalism isn’t for me. I don’t want to have to settle for just any ol’ career, I want to actually do something I care about — something that fills me with excitement every time I wake up for the next forty-five or so years I’ll be working. I’ve always found it sad that at the young age of 17 or 18, we’re expected to make pretty much the most important decision of our lives. Twelve years isn’t nearly enough time to actually figure out you want to do for the rest of your life, especially since, for most of it, we’re dealing with all these other challenging aspects of adolescence. It really isn’t fair.

On the first day with the Greene Team, I realized how incredibly lucky I was. I have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in a career I’m thinking about pursuing instead of just dropping thousands of dollars majoring in a career after high school. As a person that is constantly changing their mind, this is probably the best program for me. Pitching ideas in a room full of my peers, getting feedback, and coming up with ways to execute ideas is the first aspect of journalism we touched on and one I really liked. I don’t have a shortage of ideas, and finding a place where I can extend them is comforting. Yesterday, we had a speaker discuss the change in the industry from television to the internet, and with that my biggest fear is the career itself might not be what I completely envision for myself. It seems the journalism field is always changing, similar to other fields, but I find with journalism, it’s faster than others. Is journalism a stable career with all its rapid changes? I always envisioned myself on a channel like ABC, reporting World News Tonight. What steps would I actually have to take to get there? As the week continues, I hope to find what I envision within this career.