Spending the Summer with CNN: Master’s Student Shares His Experience at Assistant Producer at CNN

Hector Severeyn, current Master’s student of Global Strategic Communication is spending his summer working as an assistant producer at CNN Deportes en Español, following his internship with the Athletics Department at Florida Tech. In between gearing up for the Olympics and pitching ideas to network producers, he shares with us a little about this incredible experience:


What is your background?

I am a 2008 graduate of the University of Zulia with a major in audiovisual communication. I have worked for over five years in sports and radio broadcasting covering a bunch of sports all over the world. I am currently seeking my masters degree in Global Strategic Communication at FIT.

Why sports reporting?

I have always said that sports is a reflection of life and culture. It is a very unique career that a lot of people wish to carry, but only a real few do. But above all else, it is really really fun. It gives you a different perspective than the usual sports fan with the same emotion and drama.
How did you get your position at CNN?

I simply applied and got it after a quick phone interview! It’s amazing !
I guess the moral of the story is that you should always pursue what you want and always have faith in you skills. Some might believe that they are not worthy of a channel like CNN, maybe they think they are to young or inexperienced for whatever reason, but the truth is that you never know if you don’t try.
Believe in what you do and just keep on going forward. Good things come to those who believe.


What are your responsibilities?

I am an assistant producer of CNN Deportes en Español. I get to write stories, pitch ideas, help transfer videos and images and add input on the overall tone and emphasis of our daily half hour show.


How have your classes at FIT helped in your internship?

The classes give you an excellent foundation to build on, especially the classes about new media and global communication. As a Spanish speaking channel with a lot of cultural diversity, it helps to come in knowing what the American public wants and what the Latin American viewership wants, balance in this aspect is key. Studying at FIT and travelling abroad with the program has given me an edge in that aspect. I also think that working with Ryan Jones at FIT´s Athletic Communications Department helped me a lot !
I have also received praise for being one of the few master degree students in my department. People respect you more because of your education and that has definitely helped me in feeling my way in.
Some of my colleagues have even started to express interest in pursuing a master´s degree themselves !


Has anything been different than you expected?

Everything ! It is a whole new world. The state of Georgia, Atlanta compared to Melbourne, the sheer amount of technology CNN has is just mind boggling. My background was in medium to small sized television and radio stations. CNN is in just a whole other level. It´s even a little intimidating at first.


What is a recent success story that you have been a part of?

I´m learning something new every single day, and every new thing that I learn is a success story for me.
Just the fact that i´m here is a success in my book, and I believe the best is yet to come.
The 2012 London Olympics are just around the corner and i´m going to be in the thick of things during our coverage.


My dream sports job would be…

Something very close to what I am doing right now. Working in a well known TV channel, either in front or behind the cameras. But most importantly, in a place where me and my family can feel secure and happy.

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