Chloe Franklin ’24, an early grad, credits Elon and work experiences for easing transition to news industry

The journalism major is applying what she learned on campus and during her internships in a full-time role as a digital content producer at WCPO 9 in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Three students sit at ENN news desk.
Prior to her role with WCPO 9 in Cincinnati, Ohio, Chloe Franklin ’24 (center) gained meaningful experience with Elon News Network, including this September 2021 broadcast. Also pictured are Bryson Byrnes ’24 (left) and Baylor Rodman ’22.

It seems Chloe Franklin’s career in news began long before she graduated – probably because it did.

The journalism major, who is set to walk in the university’s 134th undergraduate commencement exercises on Friday, May 24, completed her studies a semester early and has worked since February as a digital content producer at WCPO 9 in Cincinnati, Ohio. Yet, Franklin isn’t new to the news industry. During the fall semester, the Rock Hill, South Carolina, native juggled classes and a part-time position as a content center producer for WSOC-TV Eyewitness News in Charlotte. The summer before that she served as a digital intern for KDFW-TV FOX 4 in Dallas-Fort Worth.

Chloe Franklin ’24 stands before a WCPO 9 logo.
Chloe Franklin ’24

“It was one of the best decisions I have ever made while at Elon,” said Franklin of her fall spent at WSOC-TV. “I not only made an impact, but working there impacted me.”

Franklin credits her experiences in Charlotte for providing an important foundation for her current role. At the ABC affiliate in Cincinnati, she is responsible for writing content for the news outlet’s website, handling breaking news and press releases. She works the early shift and regularly handles news that broke overnight. She also schedules the outlet’s social media accounts and keeps an eye on the police scanners.

With the benefit of a few months of work experience under her belt, Franklin offered several pieces of advice for Elon’s soon-to-be graduates. She charged the class of 2024 to be patient and to maintain its composure as the group collectively transitions from the classroom to the office space. Learning new tasks can be taxing, and Franklin explained it is important to ask questions and learn from others.

“Worrying isn’t going to help. You are where you are and you will get to where you need to be,” Franklin said. “You wouldn’t have received the job if you weren’t prepared.”

She shared that Elon graduates shouldn’t hesitate to reach out to the faculty and staff members they have grown close to while on campus. She said she relishes the relationships she made while attending National Association of Black Journalists conventions as a student, traveling first with Associate Professor Rich Landesberg and later with Assistant Professor Karen Lindsey. Fun fact, Franklin appeared on national news at NABJ’s 2022 event.

Among the attendees of the 2023 National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) Convention & Career Fair were Assistant Professor Karen Lindsey (from left), Chloe Franklin ’24, Crystal Moyer ’11 and Naomi Washington ’24. Moyer is the morning news anchor at WKMG News 6, a CBS affiliate located in Orlando. Photo courtesy of Lindsey.

“I have loved attending the NABJ conferences, and I am going to attend again this year,” Franklin said. “Meeting alumni and networking is really how I was able to get my job.”

Franklin thanks her faculty members and friends on campus for keeping her level-headed, singling out her adviser, Colin Donohue. She said she appreciated the journalism instructor’s willingness to be a sounding board and provide meaningful mentorship. She added that Donohue’s Media Writing class during her first year on campus was pivotal in her development.

“Chloe’s passionate approach to her work and to journalism was inspiring, and it made me a better teacher and adviser,” Donohue said. “Frankly, I miss having her on campus, but I’m looking forward to celebrating her imminent professional success.”

Through their shared classroom experiences and work with Elon News Network, Naomi Washington ’24 and Franklin developed a close friendship under the oaks. While peers, Washington said she has always been impressed with her friend’s drive and work ethic.

“I do not doubt that Chloe will go far in the future and have a successful career,” Washington said. “She has big plans and I can’t wait to see her soar.”