To be in front of a camera, watching a busy newsroom and being in a television studio is a part of every Journalism student’s wish list. Students of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication got this opportunity when they visited the News18 Television studio in Chandigarh on April 26.
Located in the Industrial Area, Phase-2, News18 studio is one of the most advanced TV stations in the region including Chandigarh, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab and Haryana. As the Journalism students, accompanied by Ms Ranjna Thakur, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Management Sciences and Liberal Arts, arrived at the studio, Mr Sumant Kumar Issar, a Senior Executive (Admin) with the News 18 group gave us an overview and took us for a round of the Programme Control Room (PCR), studio and the newsroom.
In the PCR, we were told about the basic working of the audio console, the process of how the entire content (ticker, headlines, logos, audio-visuals, chroma or the background, etc.) is managed and how the panel coordinates with the reporters and anchors. Students were most excited to visit the TV studio where there were two different sets for the news bulletins and debates. We were told about the various technicalities including how the camera is operated, frames are set for different news programmes, lighting is adjusted, the teleprompter is managed, etc.
In the newsroom, we were briefed by Mr Ritesh Lakhi, Senior Editor, News18 Punjab as he told us about the various departments in the editorial section and their functions. The newsfloor was also divided into various departments like input and production staff, senior editors, graphics department and archives.
We were amazed to know that over 30 to 40 editors work on the desk in various departments at all times while most people often tend to ignore this aspect of the news process in the electronic media. Coincidentally, all the girl students also got an exciting opportunity to shoot a small sequence with one of the News18 anchors for the promotional video of one of their special shows ‘Mahila Rath’.
It was a bright summer day and the weather was extremely hot but getting that feeling of being in front of the camera for the first time (even if for a couple of minutes) was an exciting experience. We also got to interact with Mr Jyoti Kamal, Cluster Head and Senior Editor, CNN News18, News18 Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh, Network18. He shared many important insights into electronic media and also gave useful career tips.
Responding to queries by the journalism students who aspire to be TV anchors, he said that the first step is joining a TV studio and doing all the work and assignments allocated to them. He noted that the most common problem he faces with the new joinees is that they wish to start anchoring right away but it is important to understand that they need to enhance their knowledge and skills and learn other technicalities as well before they can go on to host shows or news bulletins.
He also recommended students to do internships if possible, to utilise various opportunities provided by their institution and also to create and share their content using various digital platforms like YouTube and blogs. All of them were very generous to share their experiences, patiently listen to our queries and clear our doubts. The visit to the TV studio was definitely an exciting learning experience for all of us.