For University of Wisconsin-Whitewater journalism student McClane Noffke, the message is clear: the skills and experience she is acquiring as an undergraduate student are in demand.
At the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Student Seminar in Middleton on Feb. 25, Noffke was one of about 20 Warhawks who experienced “speed networking,” a job fair and training — all directed at developing young broadcasters and encouraging them to stay in Wisconsin.
“I talked to a lot of employers at the WBA job fair,” said Noffke. “I’m starting to apply for internships. There’s no other place like Whitewater — that does what they do with job fairs. But (the WBA job fair) is specific to my major and what I want to do. I can network with professionals, add them on my Linkedin and email them with questions I have.”
Noffke, of Holmen, was also presented the $2,500 Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Morgan Murphy Media Scholarship. And 12 of her fellow UW-Whitewater students won awards for excellence, ranging from live sports, to public service announcements, to photojournalism.
Warhawks are a familiar presence at the annual seminar. Alumna Hayley Tenpas of WHBY Radio in Appleton was part of a panel on best practices and served as the keynote speaker at the awards luncheon.
Opportunities to train, grow and thrive at UW-Whitewater
Noffke knew in high school that she was a good writer. She excelled at composing short pieces.
“When I toured UW-Whitewater, the television and radio tours were fascinating and super cool,” she said.
Later, as a freshman, UWWTV Director Jim Mead assigned Noffke to job-shadow older students. She took a course with Mead and started writing for the station’s News Update and doing production. As a sophomore, she was hired as a student worker.
“I graduated from producing to a supervisory role with News Update, Sports Update, and student supervisor of programming,” said Noffke. But Noffke isn’t all news, all the time. She likes to have fun in a way that takes programming up a notch, as she has with the station’s Street Talk student-on-the-street feature. Noffke and her friend Erin Greshay are the two-person crew who interview students with a weekly question.
“On our very first episode together, she (Greshay) shows up in a banana costume,” said Noffke. “The students on campus really seemed to like the craziness of it. So we will have a costume around a holiday.”
Greshay has gone on assignment dressed as a turkey, a Christmas tree and a shamrock. With Easter coming up, you can guess what’s next.
“Now people are asking us if they can be on Street Talk,” said Noffke, reflecting on the community-building she and Greshay are doing. “People are enjoying it. It makes a day different. It’s a fun thing to do.”
Pictured is Michelle Vetterkind, president and CEO of the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association, presenting the Morgan Murphy Media Scholarship to McClane Noffke, a UW-Whitewater journalism major from Holmen. UW-Whitewater students attended the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association seminar and awards program in Middleton on Feb. 25.
With graduation more than a year away, Noffke is hoping for an internship this summer in or around La Crosse. After graduation, she will pursue what she enjoys, which may mean a career in news production, entertainment, corporate video, photography or a combination. With the mentors she has, Noffke knows she will be prepared.
“I’ve known and worked with (Mead) since my freshman year,” said Noffke. “He is still my main mentor. Every single professor has been willing to help me.”
She said Amal Ibrahim, an associate professor of communication who specializes in electronic communication, sends her internship opportunities. Last October, Brian Lucas, a lecturer and advisor to WSUW Radio, arranged for her to attend a national conference for college broadcasters in Baltimore where she toured the Baltimore Ravens stadium to observe how ESPN and other networks cover football games.
“I’m a really big music nerd,” she said. “I’m in the Marching Band. I’m in the Community Band. I can pursue my passion for music here while being able to learn communication.”
As a public relations minor, Noffke is active in the student chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America. She is treasurer for Zeta Phi Eta sorority and works as a resident hall assistant, where she promotes involvement to her freshman residents.
“I encourage them to get involved as much as they can,” said Noffke. “You will never have this many opportunities available to you again. Get involved.”
Link to original story: https://www.uww.edu/news/archive/2023-03-wisconsin-broadcasters-conference