Journalism major earns Best Writer Award at NABJ workshop

Alex Ofori ’17 participated in a four-day multimedia workshop at North Carolina A&T State University, receiving instruction from experienced faculty members and industry professionals.

<p>During the 2016 NABJ Multimedia Short Course, Elon University journalism major Alex Ofori &rsquo;17 (center) received instruction from several professional journalists, including Anthony Wilson (left), a news anchor with WTDV ABC 11 in Durham, and Damany Lewis,&nbsp;a WPXI&nbsp;anchor/reporter in Pittsburgh.</p>
Elon University journalism major Alex Ofori ’17 participated in the 2016 National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) Multimedia Short Course and was recognized with the workshop’s Best Writer Award.

During the intensive four-day workshop, held on March 16-19 at North Carolina A&T State University, student journalists received practical instruction from North Carolina A&T faculty members and experienced media professionals. As part of their training, the student participants produced a newscast, webcasts, podcasts, video slide shows and related social media sites.  

“I think the short course experience was transformative,” said Ofori. “It was great for me to get hands-on experience with industry professionals, have them look at my work, and see what it takes to become a successful multimedia journalist. I also formed relationships that have the potential to be mutually beneficial going forward.”

The Elon junior explained that he was honored and initially surprised to receive the workshop’s Best Writer Award. “I think I was chosen for the award due to the strength of the several scripts I wrote for the newscast,” he said. “I was able to keep a conversational, broadcast tone in my scripts through trial and error. I had to write each of the reads/scripts over at least two or three times.”

Ofori said the faculty members and reporters offered insightful advice throughout the training’s four days. One piece of feedback that stayed with him was to report “the story like I’m telling it to my brother or father.”

“It’s crucial to keep a casual and conversational tone when writing for broadcast in order to effectively get messages and stories across,” he said.

The Lynnfield, Massachusetts, native is an active member of several Elon student media organizations, working in several capacities with “One on One Sports,” “Elon Phoenix Weekly” and “Elon Local News.”

Professional journalists who participated in the 2016 short course included: Anthony Wilson, news anchor, WTDV ABC 11, Durham; Melody Freeman Taylor, producer, CNN, Atlanta; Charlitta Rodrigues, platform manager, NBC Universal, Washington, D.C.; Damany Lewis, WPXI anchor/reporter, Pittsburgh; Anzio Williams, vice president of news, NBC 10-WCAU, Philadelphia; Sharon Stevens, reporter/producer, HEC-TV, St. Louis; Mario Boone, news reporter, WLOS, Asheville; Marc Willis, public affairs specialist, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, Washington, D.C.; and Carl McLean, photographer, WSOC, Charlotte.