The Communications Fellow has worked for student media throughout his time at Elon and is an anchor for Elon Local News.
Brian Rea ’21 was an 8-year-old with some impressive foresight. He dressed as his local sports reporter for career day at school, certain that he wanted to be a TV news anchor. Fast-forward 12 years to the summer of 2019, and Brian is interning at that same Boston station. He met the inspiration behind that fateful costume, Mike Lynch, who encouraged Brian to continue to follow his dream.
A Communications Fellow and anchor for Elon Local News’ evening news show, Brian joined student media his first week on campus. While sharpening his reporting skills, he has also experienced mentoring from both sides. Last year he worked on the morning show with an upperclassman who challenged him to be more conversational on camera. Now he’s mentoring co-anchor Maeve Ashbrook ’22, sharing what he was taught.
A few days each week Brian works the information desk at Moseley Center, a position he pursued to gain insight into how Elon works and to interact with new people. He says he loves the campus job, even with its challenges. “I’ve met so many great people, but I’ve also had some hard phone calls. I’ve learned to do my best to make people happy. Interestingly, my job involves a lot of thinking on your feet, which has helped me a lot in journalism, too,” he says.
Brian credits his background in competitive gymnastics for teaching him persistence and in theater arts for lessons in empathy — two other skills he relies on as a reporter. Those skills came in handy when he told the story of an Elon professor’s battle with cancer. “I felt a great responsibility to tell it in a way that reflected her best but also made her feel good,” he says. “I’m 20 years old and this woman is entrusting me, letting me show the most vulnerable parts of her life. It’s important to remember what a story means to someone else.”
Brian is Elon and one of the many stories that are part of our “I Am Elon” series.