Students share PCF internship experience

USP journalism students Elizabeth Osifelo (left), Adi Anaseini Civavonovono (middle) and Salote Qalubau (second from right) with other participants of the PCF Media Programme. Picture: spasifikmag.com

SUVA, 16 AUGUST 2108 (WANSOLWARA ONLINE) – The Pacific Cooperation Foundation’s Media Programme has been dubbed a successful platform to boost the learning experience for student journalists from the region.

According to three final-year journalism students at The University of the South Pacific, the extensive programme allowed them to build on their passion for journalism.

Students Elizabeth Osifelo, Salote Qalubau and Adi Anaseini Civavonovono shared their reflections after completing the internship program in New Zealand recently.

According to Osifelo, the two-week programme enabled them to observe and be part of the inner workings and production processes of media organisations in New Zealand.

“The media internship in general gave me the opportunity to ask questions regarding the operation and daily running of the media organisations,” she said.

“I was also able to share ideas and talanoa sessions with some of the best media and journalists in New Zealand. This year’s host agencies were Auckland University of Technology, Pacific Media Network, Sunpix, TVNZ, Radio New Zealand and Spasifik.

“The internship programme was very useful. It gave me the opportunity to participate in the media industry in New Zealand. It was a great experience to learn about the various trends and changes that are taking place because of technology and globalisation and ways in which New Zealand media companies are being challenged with the changing times and continue to thrive and deliver.”

Osifelo said the internship allowed her to view issues from a broader perspective especially in a media industry environment that was very advanced compared with other Pacific Island countries.

She commended the PCF initiative and urged student journalists to apply and be part of the exciting experience.

For Qalubau, being able to produce a news segment for Radio New Zealand was one of the highlights of her visit to various media organisations.

“This was one of the motivational factors that pushed me to look more closely at broadcast media rather than confine myself to my niche which has always been print media,” she shared.

“It was an awesome experience to work under the supervision of Radio New Zealand Pacific Team leader Moera Tuilaepa, who was extremely patient with us and encouraged me to write my script , conduct and record my own phone interviews voice over.

“I loved the fact that we worked with minimal supervision at Radio New Zealand rather than be spoon fed news tips. This to me is how journalism students will be able to learn how to generate news tips rather than be dependent on press releases. It helps us look at issues in detail and find the news that ultimately affects the general public and those at grassroots level.”

Qalubau said the technical aspects and editing processes for broadcast media were fascinating.

The internship experience had changed perspectives for Civavonovono, who said the trip broadened her understanding of the operations of a developed media landscape.

“My interest leaned more towards digital journalism. However, at the end of each placement, I realised the importance of different media types and how it works best to suit its audience,” she said.

“One of the interesting things I learnt was the art of tailoring sounds for podcast. This is something Fiji media can use for the purpose of educating on specific issues, which can be more effective through storytelling.”

Now in its third year, the PCF Media Programme focuses on improving the level and quality of media exposure in the Pacific, with particular interest on economic development, arts and culture.

According to PCF, selected students are immersed in the newsroom for two weeks where they would meet reporters and come away with a better understanding of regional issues.

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