Creating Journalists at Emmanuel College

A guide for ENGL 2501 and ENGL 3801

Wednesday’s speaker is an International Man of Mystery #ECSteve


The Clark Kents, aka, prepare for a spelling bee. From left, Lindsay Corcoran, Jennifer Lord Paluzzi and Steve Balestrieri.

Here’s a few things you need to know about Steve Balestrieri, who will speak to Emmanuel College journalism students on Wednesday:

  • He’s listed on IMDB, in part because some tourists were a little too excited about seeing Helen Mirren.
  • He covers the New England Patriots regularly for, appears on radio to discuss the team, and has appeared in USA Today.
  • He served for 16 years in the U.S. Army Special Forces, retiring as chief warrant officer, commanding officer of a U.S. Army Special Forces A-Team.
  • He’s served as a security advisor on a number of movies in foreign lands– one actor in particular had a hardened security team struggling to keep up.
  • We met at a spelling bee when he was on the competition’s team. Shortly afterwards, his resume popped up in my email.
  • He worked for me at Street Connect/Daily Voice as my Millbury reporter, hired mainly because — how can you NOT hire an Army Special Forces veteran who can spin tales that include Hollywood gossip AND save your butt when it comes to covering sports?

For class purposes, this is a “how to conduct an interview” exercise. Steve will talk a little bit about his journalism career and answer questions.

Students in Intro to Journalism will have their first live-Tweeting exercise during class, using the hashtag #ECSteve. Please bring your cell phone or laptop — whatever you feel the most comfortable using for fast Tweeting purposes — to class. I will be collecting class Tweets in a Storify, which will allow us to see which aspects of Steve’s talk are highlights. You also need to take notes for a story, which is due Monday, on your blog, at the start of class.

Mime, from Wikimedia Commons. Used under Creative Commons license.

Mime, from Wikimedia Commons. Used under Creative Commons license.

Students in Feature Writing will NOT be live-Tweeting. Your challenge here is to control the interview — believe me, I know after years of staff meetings with Steve that keeping him on topic is a happy challenge — and determine what aspects of his career, for the purposes of the story, you want to highlight. The story is due Monday, on your blog, by the start of class.

Note to students in both classes: research your interview subjects as much as possible before the interview!


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This entry was posted on September 12, 2014 by in Journalism, Twitter and tagged , , , , , .

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