The late news icon Walter Cronkite once said of his job as a newscaster, “Our job is only to hold up the mirror-to tell and show the public what has happened.”
On Monday, September 20th, Oak Lawn Community High School students in Mr. DiFilippo’s Social Science class were fortunate to have a Zoom visit from local news anchor Natalie Bomke of Fox 32. Bomke dropped by to discuss both the role of the social sciences in her career as a journalist and to present the components of a quality television production that informs the public.
On setting up the visit, teacher Patrick DiFilippo said, “I love bringing in people that use the social sciences in their careers in order to show that there are real-world implications to the social science curriculum. Additionally, I have always been impressed with Ms. Bomke’s thorough approach to news coverage and excellent ability to communicate with her audience. She was an exceptional guest.”
The Zoom conversation began with the importance of the social sciences on Bomke’s career. She mentioned that the social sciences were some of her favorite classes growing up and how she uses a strong understanding of history and geography on a daily basis in her career. Bomke started the video conference with a discussion of current events. She asked the students about what recent events would need a solid historical background in order to report accurately on the full story. Students explored an array of answers that included events in Afghanistan, extreme weather conditions, immigration issues, and other recent events in the news that would require a strong factual background.
When asked about the segment on the importance of history and background, freshman Amanda Youngren commented, “I learned that you have to study something extremely closely in order successfully write and report on a topic.”
Next, the visit concentrated on the qualities of a news broadcast since many of the students in attendance were also members of the Spartan Journalism team. She mentioned that there is a lot of hard work that goes behind the scenes of a news broadcast. Today, many media members have to write, record, and edit their own broadcast segments. There was also discussion on the ability to adjust and create opportunities in the field of journalism.
Junior Owen Dziemiela remarked, “I thought it was interesting to see someone actually in the business of journalism and to learn about all that goes into that career.”
Mr. DiFilippo’s class plans to bring in more professionals that use the social sciences in the future. Bomke can be seen weekdays on Fox 32 news at 5PM and 9PM.