Linnie Supall ‘03 is no longer the shy 6th grade dance student Performing Arts Department Chair Sara Salivar remembers having in class, though she has called upon that dance training in her burgeoning career as a broadcast journalist.
Rather, she is a confident and poised public speaker who deftly commands a tv audience as a reporter for WPTV NewsChannel 5.
Supall ‘03, a graduate of the University of Miami, returned to campus Wednesday morning to discuss her career and the current multimedia journalism landscape with a class of eager broadcast students.
Salivar said the moment was momentous for her as Supall’s former teacher.
“It’s tremendous to see how far she has come and how her journey has unfolded over the years,” said Salivar.
Supall’s lecture titled “Media 101,” included the art of the pitch, writing press releases, and crafting stories that answer the question of “why should our viewers care?”
“If I can’t answer that question, I need to continue doing my homework,” said Supall of the evolution of a story idea to an actual on-air segment.
Reporters, she said, are considering stories that fall into three categories: new, now, next.
Supall urged the class of broadcast students to always think ahead; an ability she calls a broad life skill.
“Deadlines are intense and definitive. The 5 o’clock news is at 5 – it’s not at 6,” she said.
She encouraged students to think outside the box and find innovative ways to connect with people at “warp speed.” As a self-described shy person, Supall said this necessity has forced her to “come into her own.”
“But a lot of the skills I learned and a lot of the tools I currently use, I learned here at Benjamin,” she said.