Tell me I can’t do something

July 23, 2014


Double T Insider staff - watching bloopers from 2013-2014

Double T Insider staff – watching bloopers from 2013-2014

There’s a great story about Maya Angelou who died a few months ago.  One of her friends had to dare her to write her first book.  As the story goes, her friend James Baldwin told a book representative – “if you want Maya Angelou to do something, tell her she can’t do it” (Hyatt, Michael, 2014).  I don’t know about you, but sometimes when presented with a challenge or if I ever feel that “I’m being told that I can’t do something,” it inspires me to at least give it a try.  Honestly, here in the Department of Journalism & Electronic Media, we encourage your ideas.  Give it a try.  At the very least – tell your story.


DTI that first year! From left to right - Maitland Rutledge, Blake Silverthorn, Josh Koch, Jason Angoy, Justin Vincent, Regine Cliatt, Eric Van Allen, Riannon Rowley, Erica Taylor

DTI that first year! From left to right – Maitland Rutledge, Blake Silverthorn, Josh Koch, Jason Angoy, Justin Vincent, Regine Cliatt, Eric Van Allen, Riannon Rowley, Erica Taylor

Double T Insider – Fox College Sports and Fox Sports Southwest

This week has been big — an idea that started with a single Journalism & Electronic Media student three years ago has evolved into a weekly television show that will be aired on Fox College Sports and Fox Sports Southwest.  This is a big step for Double T Insider and BIG opportunity for students in JEM and the College of Media & Communication.  It represents a team effort – a group of dedicated and passionate students willing to give up a lot of their free time, a college that’s willing to take a chance and an athletics department that’s willing to provide support and encouragement for this unique and innovative partnership.  Even though no one ever said “ya’ll can’t do this,” it took a group of students who were willing to do a lot of hard work, have dedication to see something finished, spend a lot of all-nighters, demonstrate patience, keep focused with determination and a willingness to do something outside of class.  I look at the faces in this picture and think – wow – most have graduated and are rocking the real world.  There are a couple of students with MA degrees, one with a Big 12 internship under their belt and another working in sports media down in the Houston area.  These are just a few of the students who volunteered their time and effort to pursue something they were passionate about.  They’ve all moved on to bigger and better things.  Maybe now’s the time for you to pursue and live your passion.  Speaking of that – check out practicum courses that you can take and learn more about live sports productions with KTXT-FM, Texas Tech Athletics and Double T Insider.  Talk to your advisor about those courses.  There are SO many opportunities in the department, college and all over campus.  Talk to one of your JEM faculty members about finding where you can plug in.

Kristen Helmberger, EMC major at Oops Doughnuts Productions in Hollywood

Kristen Helmberger, EMC major at Oops Doughnuts Productions in Hollywood

Student lands COOL internship…..after a guest speaker Skypes into EMC 3310

Speaking of finding your passion….Dr. Glenn Cummins is one of our outstanding JEM faculty members.  He taught EMC 3310 during the fall 2013 semester.  After a Skype session with Andy Fickman (ADV 1988) (Mr. Fickman is a director in Hollywood and owner of Oops Doughnuts Productions), EMC major Kristen Helmberger tweeted Andy Fickman after the presentation and asked about an internship.  Guess where she’s been this summer!  Yep – interning at Oops Doughnuts Productions getting to do really cool stuff — watching sizzle reels of upcoming movies, being on the set and learning a ton!  Take advantage of those moments!

JEM Summer Showcase 

Send me photos of what you are doing this summer!  I’m really looking forward to seeing what students in the New Zealand study abroad courses will send our way!  Also – TTU Junction. And all our JEM students interning, working, hanging out in Georgia, Austin, New York, Washington, D.C., Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth….Check out what JEM major Emily Hamilton has been up to with her camera!

JEM major Emily Hamilton spending some time with her camera in Houston

JEM major Emily Hamilton spending some time with her camera in Houston

JEM major Emily Hamilton skyline

JEM major Emily Hamilton skyline

JEM major Emily Hamilton working with color

JEM major Emily Hamilton working with color

JEM major Emily Hamilton finding rainbows

JEM major Emily Hamilton finding rainbows

JEM major Emily Hamilton catching color in the sky

JEM major Emily Hamilton catching color in the sky

JEM major Emily Hamilton - Wreck Em!

JEM major Emily Hamilton – Wreck Em!

So, what’s next?

Let’s just make it happen.  Door is open. In fact, start with taking a special topics and/or elective course this fall –

Sports Reporting, News & Innovation, Advanced Web Design, Public Opinion and Propaganda, Live Sports Production (Hougland), Radio (Ginter), Producing Sports (Giovannetti), Understanding Video Games, and many more!

This Happened

May 27, 2014
Graduation May 2014

Graduation May 2014

This happened!  Spring graduation was a success for the Department of Journalism & Electronic Media.  I can’t wait to see what the future holds for the class of May 2014.  I’ve already heard from a few of you who are working, interning or getting ready for graduate school!  We would love (actually we need) to hear about your career/job.  Feel free to drop me a note.

Alex Cruz, EMC 2014. What a great day for this family!

Alex Cruz, EMC 2014. What a great day for this family!


As a department, we’ve had a TREMENDOUS year!  Take a look at just a few of the accomplishments from our students and faculty between August 2013 and May 2014:

  • JEM students win regional SPJ awards and recognition for The Hub
  • JEM students win scholarships from Headliners Foundation and Texas Association of Broadcasters
  • JEM students awarded prestigious internships including Meet the Press and Morris Communications Management Program
  • JEM students work as stringers for New York Times
  • JEM students land full-time jobs at KLBK-TV, Lubbock Avalanche Journal, KCBD-TV, KTTZ-TV, Texas Tech Athletics, George Mason University, Houston Community Newspapers, KJTV-TV, Prince George’s County Sentinel, Ramar Communications, WDHN-TV, RD Thomas Advertising, and many more!
  • JEM hosts 1st Texas Association of Broadcasters Regional Newsroom Workshop
  • JEM co-hosted inaugural International Film Series
  • JEM faculty published 22 journal articles, books, book chapters, and monographs
  • JEM faculty presented 27 conference papers
  • JEM faculty served on 24 dissertation committees and work with 12 master’s students on 6050 projects and other research projects
Katie Penkert, EMC 2014

Katie Penkert, EMC 2014

Hands On Experiences

The JEM faculty listened and we wanted to provide you with as many hands-on experiences as possible.  Between August 2013 and May 2014, JEM (and other majors) helped produce –

  • 99 MCTV episodes
  • 23 Double T Insider episodes
  • 7 specials
  • 4 Heads Up Display episodes

This doesn’t include all the activities at KTXT-FM, The Raider, 88.1, The Hub and other projects.  And guess what – you can earn academic credit while getting some real-world experience.  In fact, this fall, we’ve got some really special opportunities that you need to take advantage of:

Eric Van Allen, EMC 2014

Eric Van Allen, EMC 2014

Double T Insider: this fall, we will offer a special section of a practicum class called “Double T Insider.”  This class will be designed specifically for students to earn academic credit and work on this award-winning production.  The fall course will be taught by Chris Humphries, a producer for Texas Tech Athletics (this is separate from the Raider Vision practicum).  Trust me on this — if you want to get into sports and want an opportunity to be part of this class, you’ve got to make it happen this fall.  BIG news coming.  HUGE.  The CRN is 12110.  It’s EMC 4300.004.  Don’t miss the opportunity.  This class will count for an elective.

Eric Van Allen (EMC), Lawrence Sierra (EMC), Alicia Keene (JOUR), Evan Dixon (JOUR) and Abigail Arroyos (JOUR) - all 2014 graduates!

Eric Van Allen (EMC), Lawrence Sierra (EMC), Alicia Keene (JOUR), Evan Dixon (JOUR) and Abigail Arroyos (JOUR) – all 2014 graduates!

News and Innovation:another great opportunity this fall is working with professionals at AJ Media to develop innovative news products for a younger generation.  You can get in on the ground floor of something truly innovative.  The class is JOUR 4301, CRN 34060.  Again, this course can count as an elective!

Emily Pellegrini, JOUR 2014

Emily Pellegrini, JOUR 2014

Summer Spots Still Available!

For Summer I, you still have time to enroll.  Make sure and check your schedule.

EMC 3308, Visual Communications

EMC 3310, Introduction to Electronic Media

PHOT 2310, Principles of Photography

JOUR 2300, Principles of Journalism

JOUR 2310, News Writing

JOUR 3355, Media Ethics

JOUR 4301, Future of Global Journalism

Time is running out! Enroll today! Talk to Don Ellis or Ryan Johnson and make it happen!

Don Ellis and JB Felipe, EMC 2014

Don Ellis and JB Felipe, EMC 2014


JEM – so which side will you be on?

April 15, 2014
What side of the camera do you plan to be on?

What side of the camera do you plan to be on?

JEM - new marketing stuff

JEM – new marketing stuff

What do you think?  Our College of Media & Communication marketing department developed this new ‘rack card’ that will be used to promote the Department of Journalism & Electronic Media.  What do you think?  Which side do you plan to be on?  Our department is about providing learning opportunities for students to become innovative, responsible storytellers. It’s amazing to see all the cool things that have happened for our students in this academic year; I’m PUMPED about what the rest of 2014 has in store for JEM students! Speaking of the rest of 2014…. Want to build your portfolio?  Want to help a media organization build new products to reach emerging audiences?  Want to get some real-world experience in leadership, strategic planning and content creation? Make sure you take a look at this new elective for fall 2014!

Journalism Elective JOUR 4301.003 - News Innovation at AJ Media

Journalism Elective JOUR 4301.003 – News Innovation at AJ Media

It’s going to be an excellent class — taught by industry professionals working at the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal who want your input! In fact, this really is a unique opportunity to actually learn from the inside out about the fast-paced changes facing the media industry.

Dr. Kaufhold Guns Up at Broadcast Education Association Annual Convention in Las Vegas

Dr. Kaufhold Guns Up at Broadcast Education Association Annual Convention in Las Vegas

Broadcast Education Association 

Ever wonder what “research” is all about?  Media companies depend on research to help answer very practical questions on a daily basis.  In JEM, we have several faculty members and graduate students researching a number of interesting problems/questions.  From Dr. Glenn Cummins studying the effect of camera angles on a television viewer’s attitude and/or perception about a college football game to graduate student Nate Rodriguez examining the Texas Country music phenomenon, there are some really interesting research studies going on.  Guess what? You can get involved and improve your resume just by reaching out to a faculty member and asking: “So, what type of research do you do? Is there any way I can help?” You will be pleasantly surprised and it could lead to developing a skill set and job opportunities that you never imagined.  Talk to any of our faculty members or ask one of the graduate teaching assistants.  All are working on some really cool projects!

Take a look at some of these opportunities with a few companies!

Dr. Hellmueller's new book!

Dr. Hellmueller’s new book!

Speaking of Research

Check out Dr. Lea Hellmueller’s new book — The Washington, DC Media Corps in the 21st Century! The book will be available in July 2014 and it looks like a really cool read about how globalization effects journalistic practices.  You can find out more info here. Dr. Hellmueller teaches courses in journalism such as JOUR 3310, News Presentation I and JOUR 4301, Issues in Global Journalism.  You can take her Issues in Global Journalism course in Summer I!  Ask your advisor today about the course that will help fulfill your global communication credit!

Ultimate Gamer Tournament

Ultimate Gamer Tournament

Heads Up Display – Video Game Tournament

Every week, you will find a group of students filming a little web program called Heads Up Display in our studio.  Led by Carmen Askerneese, these students are definitely PASSIONATE about video games.  Coming up May 3, they are hosting the Ultimate Gamer Tournament at the United Spirit Arena.  This event will benefit a charity called Child’s Play.  For more information about how to sign up for this amazing opportunity (and really cool event), go to the event website.  You can also read more about Heads Up Display at The Hub.


Please don’t let another scholarship deadline get past you.  Here’s more $$ available through the RTNDA.

Send me your cool stuff!  

I’d love to share the cool things that JEM students are doing.  Feel free to e-mail me different projects you are working on. For example, JB Felipe and Ben Jarvis recently traveled to the National Association of Broadcasters convention in Las Vegas to check out all the cool new gear for film, television and electronic media.  And….took a fall off the Stratosphere.  Click on the photo below and see a video about what it’s like to jump off a tall building in Vegas and live to tell about it!

JB Jumps off the Stratosphere

JB Jumps off the Stratosphere


Spring! Summer! Fall!

March 26, 2014
Congratulations to our amazing JEM students working at The Hub@TTU!

Congratulations to our amazing JEM students working at The Hub@TTU!

It’s that time again….Advising & Registration!  I wanted to touch base with you about some changes related to Journalism & Electronic Media and promote a few of our cool elective classes coming up this summer and fall!

Before we get started…just want to say Congratulations to the staff at The Hub and our JEM students who are picking up some awards this weekend at the Society of Professional Journalists Region 8 Conference!  Get this, the following will receive a 2013 Mark of Excellence Award this weekend at this conference — Hub Staff for Best Independent Online Student Publication, Alicia Keene, Abigail Arroyos and Evan Dixon for Online In-Depth Reporting (for Asbestos on Campus), JOUR 2013 alumni Sydney Holmes for Online Feature Reporting (for Watch me bare my soul and have a panic attack) and Claudia Tristan for Online News Reporting (for Surviving rape at Texas Tech University).  Congratulations to all! By the way, you can publish your work at The Hub — it’s easy

Grammar. Spelling. Punctuation.

Back in the fall, each of the departments in the college were given the opportunity to evaluate and decide about the role of the GSP for their majors. For the Department of Journalism & Electronic Media, the faculty decided to keep JOUR 2310, News Writing, as a requirement for journalism majors and maintain the GSP requirement. The faculty voted to allow electronic media and communications majors to have a choice between JOUR 2310 or a new course that will be offered beginning fall 2014 – MCOM 2320. This new class will be a course designed to teach about several area of media writing. Our faculty believes that students interested in news writing need to demonstrate the basic principles of grammar, spelling and punctuation. It is my opinion that we offer one of the best news writing course in the state — anecdotally, it blows me away every time I talk to a graduate who says something about how much they hated taking JOUR 2310 in college but how grateful they are to have had it!

Even though our electronic media and communications majors have a choice between two courses, I would encourage any student with a passion and career interests in producing, reporting, and writing for a variety of different media outlets to take News Writing. It doesn’t matter if you want to end up in sports, news, or entertainment, writing is important.

You must check with your advisor before changing your degree plan.  Also, you definitely must check about requirements related to the catalog year of your first enrollment at Texas Tech.  Advisors for JEM are:  Donald Ellis and Ryan Johnson.

JOUR 4301 - Issues in Global Journalism! Summer 2014!

JOUR 4301 – Issues in Global Journalism! Summer 2014!

Summer Coolness

JEM is offering several of our regular courses in the summer I and summer II sessions.  JOUR 2300, Principles of Journalism, JOUR 2310, News Writing, EMC 3310, Principles of Electronic Media, and more!  I did want to tell you about two special topics courses that can help you with global communication credits!  In our Journalism program, we are offering JOUR 4301, Issues in Global Journalism in Summer I — you can take this class from one of the world’s leading experts in the profession of journalism from a global perspective, Dr. Lea Hellmueller!  Its CRN is 30452 and it will meet at 10 a.m.

Really cool special topics class coming Summer II!

Really cool special topics class coming Summer II!

In Summer II, the electronic media program will offer EMC 4301, Audio Storytelling: Global Voices.  This course is designed to help students do long-form audio storytelling — and create content for a new program we are trying to get started called Global Reach!  The class meets at 10 a.m. in Summer II and its CRN is 64050.

JOUR 4301 -- Sports Reporting -- This Fall!

JOUR 4301 — Sports Reporting — This Fall!

Fall Awesomeness

Fall is really going to be awesome.  JEM will be offering courses ranging from “technology touches” (JOUR and EMC 2000) where you can earn academic credit by ‘doing’ journalism and/or electronic media at MCTV, Double T Insider, KTXT-FM or The Hub to excellent electives about Analyzing Television, Public Opinion and Propaganda, Photography and….

EMC 4301: Understanding Video Games. Really cool class!  Take it!

EMC 4301: Understanding Video Games. Really cool class! Take it!

EMC 4301, Understanding Video Games (CRN 30923, MWF 10 a.m.).  Really going to be a cool class!

JOUR 4301, History & Practice of Sports Reporting (CRN 31508), MW 4 p.m.).  Thinking about going into sports journalism? This class is a MUST TAKE!

Check with Advising!  Advisors for JEM are: Donald Ellis and Ryan Johnson.

MCTV New Opportunities!

MCTV New Opportunities!

Get involved. Get an internship. Get a job.

We’ve had ALOT of recent student successes and cool stuff happening that I wanted to share –

  • Lauren Estlinbaum, JOUR (May 2014) has been selected to be a Morris Management Intern.  Morris Communications is a media company based in Augusta, Georgia with a portfolio that includes newspapers, radio stations, magazines, books, broadband services, and event marketing.  Congratulations Lauren!  She represents the first TTU student to ever be selected into this internship program!
  • Another first — A producer with Meet the Press notified Evan Dixon, JOUR (May 2014), that he had been selected as an intern for this long time staple of broadcast journalism!  Evan starts the internship this summer.  Congratulations!
  • Remember that Texas Association of Broadcaster’s workshop?  Well, one of our EMC majors attended the workshop, networked and is now a reporter at KCBD-TV!  Congratulations Ashlyn Tubbs, EMC (2014)!  Ashlyn has been working with MCTV this semester.  In the past, she has worked at The Daily Toreador and interned with KLBK-TV.
  • And…for you #SXSW fans….EMC major JB Felipe worked with Google on the #IngressReport #RecursionAustin project! 



  • Please make sure you apply for a Texas Association of Broadcasters scholarship!  Deadline is coming up!


This camera needs someone to take an award-winning photo

This camera needs someone to take an award-winning photo

JEM: Teaching, Research, Service, Excellence.

March 5, 2014
2014 Appathon Contestants

2014 Appathon Contestants

Howdy!  Hope your week is off to a great start.

You will read this twice – the Texas Association of Broadcasters event is this Saturday.  Today (Thursday is the deadline!)  You can register here! This is really a unique opportunity.  Please try and take advantage!

I wanted to take the opportunity to talk about “professors” for a moment.  When I arrived at Texas Tech as a freshman in the fall of 1984, I knew classes were taught by “professors” but I didn’t really know what a “professor” did outside of class.  In the, gulp, 30 years since then, I’ve learned that being a professor is so much more than just teaching a class.  Here in the College of Media & Communication and Texas Tech University, our professors strive for excellence in three different areas: teaching, research and service.  I would suggest that our faculty in the Department of Journalism & Electronic Media are the best in the state!  This week, three of our professors received some great news that needs to be shared!

Dr. Kent Wilkinson and me

Dr. Kent Wilkinson and me

  • Dr. Kent Wilkinson was notified that he had earned the rank of Full Professor – this is the ‘top’ academic rank a faculty member can achieve.  It’s an honor to earn this type of promotion.  Here at Texas Tech, Dr. Wilkinson has served as Regent’s Professor and Director of the Thomas Jay Harris Institute for International and Hispanic Communication.  He is an internationally-known (and respected) scholar who exemplifies excellence.

    Dr. Robert Peaslee

    Dr. Robert Peaslee

  • Dr. Robert Peaslee was notified that he had achieved tenure and promotion to the rank of Associate Professor.  Since 2008, Dr. Peaslee has demonstrated excellence in teaching, research and service.  In addition, he has championed visual communication and international film.  Our students, department, college and university have definitely benefited from Dr. Peaslee’s leadership in bringing film series such as the Global Lens to campus.  In addition to earning tenure and promotion, he has been selected as a 2014 recipient of the President’s Excellence in Teaching Award!
Dr. K is always teaching

Dr. K is always teaching

  • Dr. Kelly Kaufhold received notification that he has been selected as a 2014 recipient of the Texas Tech Alumni Association’s New Faculty Award!  Dr. Kaufhold teaches courses at the undergraduate and graduate level in journalism, media theory and digital media.

Feel free to send each and/or all of these faculty a note of congratulations!  At the very least, the next time you see them in the hallway — tell them “Congrats!”

Texas Association of Broadcasters (

Texas Association of Broadcasters (

TAB is this Saturday!

Don’t forget that the Texas Association of Broadcasters is hosting its Regional Newsroom Workshop here in the College of Media & Communication this Saturday!  You must register to attend.  Deadline is today!  Don’t miss this opportunity!  You can register here!  There is a $40 fee.  You will get lunch and have a wonderful opportunity to interact and learn with some of the best in the broadcast television industry!

Ph.D. student Desiree Markham participating in Miss New Mexico pageant

Ph.D. student Desiree Markham participating in Miss New Mexico pageant

Speaking of broadcasting and teaching excellence…

So how does someone make the decision to teach at the college level?  In the College of Media & Communication, we offer two graduate degrees — a Master of Arts and the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.).  Here at Texas Tech, we have several excellent Ph.D. students who are researching issues and problems related to media and communication and teaching courses for one of the academic departments.  For Journalism & Electronic Media, Desiree Markham is a Ph.D. student who has professional experience in broadcast television.  She has taught EMC 3300, Electronic Media & Society in fall 2014 and is teaching JOUR 4350, Multiplatform Journalism this semester.  Ms. Markham is from New Mexico and has experience in beauty pageants!  I asked her a few questions about how and why she decided to come and get the Ph.D. degree:

Why did you come to Texas Tech for your Ph.D.?

 I am from eastern New Mexico and I wanted to stay close to home and I knew that the College of Media and Communication had a very competitive and prestigious Ph.D. program.
You’ve had the opportunity to teach courses in Journalism & Electronic Media.  What’s your favorite thing about ‘teaching’?
I love that I have “real world” experience to bring to the classroom. Students are more engaged when they know someone has “been there.” I like to give my students the opportunity to share their thoughts and opinions and also contribute to the curriculum because they are the largest media consumers and can learn from each other.Journalism and electronic media  are continually evolving so the students have a lot to contribute and discussions can get very exciting in class
Why did you decide to go to graduate school? 
I want to obtain the highest education possible in my field and be able to teach at the university level. My goal is to graduate and pursue a career teaching in the communication field at a small university or community college, where I can also pursue my administrative goals and continue my research interests.
Has there been any aspect of beauty pageants that you’ve been able to use in the classroom to help students?
Yes, absolutely! I have taught Public Speaking and Professional Communication courses and I have my students participate in an “onstage question” assignment for part of their impromptu speaking skills grade. The media certainly has shown examples of pageant contestants who completely fall from grace during the onstage question portion of competition, but it is no easy task and the questions are typically challenging. I believe students can learn impromptu speaking skills as well as poise and grace! In addition, I have been judged competitively in interviews by judges from across the country and there are certainly some learning aspects from those experiences to share with my students. Additionally, I know what it is like to be “on camera” for hours at a time; I understand the production aspects of a live show and how to be professional in the industry.


Check out this cool contest.  Driving the Message (look at the prizes!). Deadline coming up quick!

2nd Appathon!

February 19, 2014

It’s back! The College of Media & Communication and the Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering are hosting the 2014 Texas Tech Appathon!  This is a terrific opportunity to put your ideas into action!  The event starts at 7:00 Friday night at the Livermore Center at the College of Engineering.  It ends 24-hours later.  Make sure you register for the event.  The theme for this year’s 24-hour app-building competition is Study Abroad.

Student team presenting at 2013 Appathon

Student team presenting at 2013 Appathon

So why should a student think about participating in the Appathon?

Katy Morris (right) and Derrick Franco (left) setting up the shot!

Katy Morris (right) and Derrick Franco (left) setting up the shot!

No doubt you’ve heard, seen, read about ‘entrepreneurship’ in the past year or so.  We’ve got students involved in several different projects that highlight their ability to apply their creativity to do real-world stuff!  There are JEM students involved in freelance video and photography projects, web design, and other types of ventures.  We also have students who are launching companies.  One of those is EMC major Katy Morris.  In the past year, Katy has been on a really cool ride — from attending the 2013 Appathon to heading to New York to participate in AngelHack then presenting to venture capitalists in Silicon Valley!  I asked Katy what a Media & Communication student can gain to benefit from participating in the Appathon!

As Media and Communication students we need certain skills to be able to succeed in our career. Some of these skills include: teamwork, learning to network, and good communication skills.
First, the team that you choose will rely on teamwork through out the competition. You will work closely with them over the 24 hours. Find a team that you can bring something to, whether it be designing, or even presenting the product, bring your strengths to the table.
Next, you will need to know how to network! You need to talk to as many people as you can, especially the judges. Get them to remember you and you will have a better chance. Find what they like about your app and change the things they do not.
And lastly, when it comes to presenting, you need to know how to communicate an idea clearly. At the end of the competition your group will have to present your creation to the judges. This part is almost as vital as your actual creation. If they do not understand what you made, you will not win. Practice presenting your product over and over before the judging and you will impress them every time.
And everyone needs a little competition in our life, it keeps us on our toes. Remember you do not have to be an expert to compete in a appathon. Learning as you go is one of the best ways to innovate, learn, and have fun.
In conclusion, if you want to learn skills, focus your talents, and have a future advantage over your peers, compete in an appathon. I promise, you won’t regret it.
You can check out Katy’s blog for some great pics and stories from the past year! Check out their fundraising page for their company! Check out Engineering major Derrick Franco’s presentation at the recent Tedx Texas Tech!
Easy Launch

Easy Launch

Vision behind the Appathon: Dr. Randy Reddick
In the Department of Journalism & Electronic Media, we are fortunate to have visionaries like Dr. Randy Reddick.  I hope he appreciates this, but Dr. Reddick was researching, publishing and teaching about the Internet long before it was known as the Internet!  He has led the team for developing the first app for the College of Media & Communication AND he has led the charge for launching the Appathon!  This year is no different – Dr. Reddick continues to lead the charge!  I asked Dr. Reddick a few questions about the 2014 Appathon:
Dr. Randy Reddick

Dr. Randy Reddick

What type of students can get involved with the Appathon?

 Any student with a creative bent aimed at or an interest in mobile computing can “get involved.” So can students who want to help in a college event.
 What should students be prepared to do during the Appathon?
Those who are competing should have some programming and/or design experience. Students usually participate in teams of 2-3 people. They have to come up with design solutions at all levels as well as the programming mechanics to solve the problem(s) outlined at the beginning.
What are some benefits of participating in the Appathon?
  • Experience at addressing a real-world mobile communications problem under the pressure of a tight deadline
  • Fun and camaraderie
  • Food and beverage
  • Possibility of winning cool prizes
  • Networking opportunities with other students, faculty, and potential employers
Texas Association of Broadcasters (

Texas Association of Broadcasters (

TAB – Coming Up Soon!  Register today!  

Don’t forget to register for the TAB event on Saturday, March 8, 2014.  It’s a great opportunity for students to network, learn and interact with leading broadcast professionals here at the College of Media & Communication!  Register today!

Metropolis Elektro

Wow!  What a cool opportunity for all students, but especially film and music enthusiasts.  Dr. Kent Wilkinson’s Rock & Roll Media class has invited Scott and Amy Faris to present “Launching Metropolis Elektro: From Inspiration to Opening Night” on Thursday, February 20 at 2:00 in CoMC 281!  What a great opportunity to interact with true visionaries.  Don’t miss this event!

Really Cool Launch of the TTU International Film Series

The Department of Journalism & Electronic Media, the Thomas Jay Harris Institute for Hispanic and International Communication and the TTU Cross-Cultural Advancement Center will host a free screening of 12 Years a Slave Monday, February 24, at 6 p.m. in CoMC 281.  There is a panel discussion after the film moderated by Dr. Robert Peaslee.  Join us for this special event!  You can follow the film series at:
IFS Poster

IFS Poster

Mark your calendars!

February 7, 2014
Texas Association of Broadcasters (

Texas Association of Broadcasters (

No matter what your career plans are, March 8 may provide you with an opportunity to interact with some of the nation’s top broadcast journalists at the Texas Association of Broadcasters Regional Broadcast Newsroom Workshop!  The College of Media & Communication and the TAB are hosting this ‘first time ever at Texas Tech’ event on Saturday, March 8.  Here are just a few highlights –

  • Excellent opportunity to learn about broadcast news from some of the nation’s best television journalists!
  • Have award-winning, professional journalists critique your work!
  • 18 Sessions include: Storytelling Mastery, Investigative Reporting, The Purpose Driven Stand-Up, The Write Stuff, A Network Photographer’s Tips and Tricks from the Field and more!

You can find out more about this event at

There is a reduced rate for students ($25 – this will include lunch).  Make sure you register online as soon as possible.  I will be honest, these types of events really don’t happen all the time and I really want you to consider making plans to attend.  It doesn’t matter if you are an aspiring journalist or filmmaker, these types of events provide excellent networking opportunities!  Give me a shout if you have any questions or would like more information (

Dr. Kelly Kaufhold

Dr. Kelly Kaufhold


JEM Faculty Spotlight:  Dr. Kelly Kaufhold

You’ve probably seen him around – teaching a lot of different types of courses and somehow finding time to walk with an individual student to teach them how to cover a story.  Dr. Kelly Kaufhold brings years of professional experience into the courses that he teaches and in dozens of mentoring moments each and every week.  I asked Dr. Kaufhold a few questions:

What’s the best thing about teaching at Texas Tech University?
Oh, that’s easy, it’s the earnestness and industriousness of the students. No, wait, it’s the ability to do a radio show with students; no, it’s the daily newscasts; maybe the ability to pitch and quickly teach out-of-the-box courses? Wait, it’s having hands-on, real-world outlets like MCTV Weekday Update, KTXT, Double T Insider, Or the ability to teach great undergraduate and graduate students? …oh man…
 What’s your favorite course that you teach? Why?

Dr. K is always teaching

Dr. K is always teaching

Storytelling by Smartphone, a special topics course. Students are already immersed in their mobile devices so when we can take that raw interest and craft it into good, skilled news gathering and reporting it gets them thinking in a very professional way about what used to just be social and fun. And it still is! Except it might get them hired now. Plus, it’s a scream when they post something like “Prof wants us to tweet in class. Unreal.”
 How should a student prepare for a job in journalism?
Fundamentals + multimedia + initiative. We can teach you two out of the three and our College of Media and Communication, more than ever, can “lead a horse to water” with all of our student media outlets. Any student with that initiative has all the tools they need here to set themselves apart and get hired.
 What research projects are you working on?  How can a undergraduate or graduate student get involved?
I’m building on an experimental news game that gets young adults more interested in news – it’s about to launch in some high school classrooms, which will be a first. I also plan to run a national survey this semester and there may be room for some grad students to piggyback some questions onto my panel! And I’m increasingly interested in pedagogy – improving the art of teaching.
And speaking of “teaching” and “Dr. K” (he told me about one of his former students and her recent success!)
Virginia Stille (JOUR 2012) headed to finals!

Virginia Stille (JOUR 2012) headed to finals!

JEM Alumni Spotlight

Check this out: Virginia Stille (JOUR 2012) will be competing in the Final Round of Nuestra Belleza Latina, a television program on the Univision Television Network!  Tune in February 16 and find out what is next!

Virginia Stille (JOUR 2012) will appear on Univision February 16!

Virginia Stille (JOUR 2012) will appear on Univision February 16!

Get Creative.  JEMLive!  

Take a look around – there are new initiatives and opportunities to get creative everywhere.  You can get involved with any of the following –

  • The Hub ( Photos, videos, stories, blogs, you name it — you can get published! In fact, we would love to see more photos that are TTU related!
  • MCTV – this daily newscast (Monday through Thursday) meets in CoMC 355 at 2:00 — feel free to contact and ask how you can help (everything from anchor to graphics, we need help!)
  • Double T Insider – weekly sports program broadcast in Lubbock and Amarillo television markets!  Production meetings are Thursdays at 5 p.m.
  • KTXT-FM, The Raider 88.1 – campus radio station – always seeking volunteers!  AND, we need someone to do play-by-play (as soon as this spring!). Please contact DG asap!  (
  • Heads Up Display – Video Game Show!  Yep, go to The Hub and look at the HubTV options (
  • Hubcast – brand new student-volunteer project – get in on the ground floor of a really cool media project!  (, or
  • These are just a few of the opportunities that exist.

Get Social. #JEMTTU 

As you create and post your photos, videos, etc…feel free to tag the department when and where appropriate — use #JEMTTU.

2014 is gonna rock!

January 26, 2014
Sydnee Gatewood (JOUR 2013)

Sydnee Gatewood (JOUR 2013)

All I know is that 2014 is off to a most excellent start!  It amazes me that I have the same thoughts at the end of each year — how can we top what’s happened this year?  Well…get ready.

JOUR major Evan Dixon and Congressman Randy Neugabauer at interview for The Hub

JOUR major Evan Dixon and Congressman Randy Neugabauer at interview for The Hub

The Department of Journalism & Electronic Media kicked off 2014 with different types of options to earn academic credit and ‘touch technology’ from your first year to your last here at Texas Tech. We’ve got students gaining valuable experience with KTXT-FM, The Raider 88.1, Raider Vision, The Hub, Double T Insider and MCTV.  Make sure you talk to your advisor about when it might be best for you to enroll in one of these JOUR or EMC practicum experiences!

Google Glass

CoMC Web Design Specialist Andrew Byrne

CoMC Web Design Specialist Andrew Byrne

It’s in the building! Mr. Andrew Byrne (B.A. EMC, 2010; M.A. MCOM, 2011) is the Web Design Specialist for the College of Media & Communication.  I asked him a few questions about Google Glass – make sure you read #3 if you are interested in seeing what opportunities for students may exist:What did you think when you first opened the box?

Opening the box was really exciting. Google Glass is the first thing you see,
with a label for each button and sensor, so it made it easy to grasp the
functionality right as your putting it on (which I did within 30-seconds of
opening). They’re surprisingly light and comfortable to wear. The only drawback
is they currently don’t fit with prescription glasses, but rumor has it they are
working on a modification or new set for that. With the device activated and on,
it takes a few minutes to adjust your eyes to looking at a screen with one eye.
I tried one eye closed, one eye squinted, and finally settled on both eyes open
for the clearest image.

What’s been the most exciting thing so far you’ve discovered about Google Glass?

The most exciting thing I’ve done so far is take a picture of some food I was
cooking for lunch the first day I had Google Glass. I became so immersed with
taking photos and videos, then uploading them or sharing them that I forgot I
was even cooking food and burned the shrimp I had in the skillet! Second to
that, I can’t get over how easy it is to do certain* things (not everything is
easy). For instance if you take a photo, it’s a quick voice command or tap on
the side to upload the photo to Google+. I haven’t installed Facebook or Twitter
yet for logistic reasons (personal account vs. college account vs. sharing
Google Glass with everyone), but imagine it’s just as easy to share to any of
the other supported social networks. Voice commands are almost too easy to
execute, as it isn’t tied to any one particular voice, but has far exceeded any
of my expectations for recognition and use.

Are there opportunities for students to send you ideas about possible projects with you?

I don’t see why not. We don’t have a dedicated system in place yet for how
Google Glass can be checked out and used (see logistical reasons above), but
I’ve been doing some research and am deciding between a few options. My door is
always open and I always try and keep it charged (battery life isn’t the best
from what I can tell), so anyone is more than welcome to stop by and ask me some
questions or try them on! However, Texas Tech wireless is less than friendly
with them, so if anyone has a mobile hotspot they are encouraged even more to
come by!

Send Mr. Byrne an e-mail at:

Maymester at TTU Junction & Study Abroad Opportunities

Dr. Kelly Kaufhold

Dr. Kelly Kaufhold

London. Germany. New Zealand.  There are so many opportunities to get international experience through Study Abroad – all are going to be spectacular.  You’ve got a opportunity to spend time in Germany with Dr. Kelly Kaufhold and earn two credits.  Dr. Rob Peaslee and Dr. Jerod Foster will be taking a group of students to New Zealand for two classes.  On top of these opportunities, the College’s anchor program in London will once again provide in-depth learning opportunities about European media.

Dr. Robert Peaslee and Dr. Jerod Foster

Dr. Robert Peaslee and Dr. Jerod Foster

For those of you wanting to gain experience in photography, don’t miss the opportunity in the TTU Junction Experience!  Dr. Jerod Foster will teach a photography class during Maymester at TTU Junction.  I can’t tell you the number of students who go through that course who say it was the best experience of their college career!  Talk to Dr. Foster (

There are so many more things coming up – make sure you stay ‘tuned’ – BIG ANNOUNCEMENT about something coming in March that will be a first for our department and college!  Also, we’ve got a JOUR alumnus who is participating in a reality tv show!  More details coming soon!

Speaking of alumni -

Syndey Holmes (JOUR 2013) on stage in New York City in stand up comedy competition!

Syndey Holmes (JOUR 2013) on stage in New York City in stand up comedy competition! Sydney works for Town Residential in NYC and this was posted by some co-workers on her Facebook page. So credit to @townresidential!

Finish Strong and Merry Christmas!

December 6, 2013
Career Development Conference

Career Development Conference

Here’s hoping that you find whatever it takes to finish fall 2013….STRONG!  When you feel you can’t study or proofread any more, take a quick break and do it again!

On behalf of the faculty in the Department of Journalism & Electronic Media, I just want to share how proud we are of the students in both majors.  You consistently impress us on a daily basis in and outside of class.  Keep up the good work!

Hey students from DFW area….

The College of Media & Communication is sponsoring a Career Development Conference in Dallas on Tuesday, January 7, 2014 (it’s during winter break).  So, if you are in the DFW area over the holidays, please make sure you make plans to attend.  You must register before December 20.  Go to to register.

Opportunities to build that resume….

Keep in mind that the spring 2014 semester provides dozens of opportunities for all JEM students to build their resume.  Look for opportunities to earn academic credit or volunteer at The Hub, MCTV, KTXT-FM, Raider Vision and others!

I’m going to keep this one short, because….you need to Finish Strong.

Talk to you next week!


November 25, 2013
JEM and PR students representing the College of Media & Communications at South Central Broadcasting Society's Regional Conference, Austin, TX, November 2013 (from l to r: Blake Silverthorn, Dr. Lea Hellmueller, Kaitlyn Kravik, and David Peveto).

JEM and PR students representing the College of Media & Communications at South Central Broadcasting Society’s Regional Conference, Austin, TX, November 2013 (from l to r: Blake Silverthorn, Dr. Lea Hellmueller, Kaitlyn Kravik, and David Peveto).

Happy Thanksgiving!  

I’m thankful for having the privilege of working with the students, faculty and staff here in the Department of Journalism & Electronic Media.  We’ve been able to accomplish some amazing things and know that there are bigger and better things on the horizon.  The faculty continues to make adjustments to the curriculum and we would like to have your input about what types of classes you would like to see us teach in the next year or so.  Send your ideas to me at and I will pass along to our JEM faculty.

JOUR Multiplatform Senior Projects Students, Veteran's Panel, November 2013

JOUR Multiplatform Senior Projects Students, Veteran’s Panel, November 2013


The Tech Association for Student Electronic Media (TASEM) has come up with a slogan called: Be Awesome.  In my opinion, that’s what we all need to do every single day — be awesome.  This weekend, some of our JEM students won awards at the South Central Broadcasting Society’s Regional Competition in Austin.  Blake Silverthorn, Erica Taylor and Eric Van Allen picked up a 1st Place Award for their Goin’ Band From Raiderland segment and Katilyn Cennamo won 1st Place for her “Active Shooter” Video News Feature Package.  The Double T Insider production team won 2nd Place for Double T Insider!  Congratulations!

SBC Awards, November 2013!

SBC Awards, November 2013!

My hope is that you plan to submit to the upcoming BEA Festival of Arts Competition — it’s part of the Broadcast Education Association and they put on a national competition every year.  The conference is in Las Vegas and I have some money for entry fees.  BUT, I need to know how many students plan to submit entries!  Take a look at the competition and see what you have that is AWESOME and let me know if you want to submit an entry:

I need to know by December 5, 2013 if you are going to submit something for consideration.

Llano River at TTU Junction campus, Junction, Texas

Llano River at TTU Junction campus, Junction, Texas


Dr. Jerod Foster, EMC major Jacob Copple and I are working on a project called “Texas Water Update” and we could use your help!

As you travel this holiday season, I’d like to ask a favor.  If you have a camera and would be willing, could you take some pictures while you are traveling during the holidays and e-mail them back to us?  We are hoping to start cataloging different pictures of land and water throughout the state of Texas.  We aren’t looking for professional grade photography, but we’d like to show images from all parts of the state.  If you are traveling and have the opportunity to photograph rangeland, farms, ranches, rivers, streams, lakes, playas, dry lakes, Gulf of Mexico, bays, etc….feel free to send your photos to:
We are building a website and would like to identify as many different images as possible from as many different counties in the state of Texas.  Please provide information related to the county and location (make sure it’s identifiable in the files).
Eat. Relax. Enjoy.
We’ve got just a few more days of the fall 2013 semester.  Enjoy your holiday.  Finish the semester strong — give every test, paper and assignment all you have.  Be awesome.
EMC major Blake Silverthorn, #WeAreCoMC

EMC major Blake Silverthorn, #WeAreCoMC


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