Student Summer Documentary Experiences
Clara-Sophia Daly: Radio Field Reporting
September 5, 2017
Clara-Sophia Daly, '20,worked as a field reporter for KPFA Radio in Berkeley, California. Here’s what she did while working for Pacifica News...
Each day, I would wake up to an email from the assignment editor at the station outlining what my task for the day would be. Included with it was a press release, and often a link to a news article relating to the event. Shortly after, I would hop on the bus or Bart and in transit do some research on whatever my story that day was. Sometimes it was a budget protest at San Francisco City Hall; other times it was an affordable housing rally in Oakland.
At the event, I would collect sound, interview activists, elected officials and residents of the Bay Area. Then, I would head back to the studio where I type out the story, choose and edit the sound bites and conduct any follow-up phone interviews or research. At this point in the process, one of the anchors would read-over and edit my story, often cutting out any tedious language or drawn-out sound bites. Finally, I would head into one of the recording studios, record my narration, and then piece it into my story! Within minutes, my story would be cued up to be aired on the six-o'clock Pacifica Evening News.
Listen to some stories Clara-Sophia put together:
1. San Francisco Pride Festival - a celebration of the LGBT community and protest of prejudice
2. Nuclear Protest - dozens arrested at Nuclear Weapons protest at Livermore Lab
3. Black Live Matter - release of the 4 year anniversary report
Due to KPFA’s small staff and budget, I was given a huge amount of responsibility and was forced to step up to the plate. I received guidance on how to improve my storytelling style, my narration and my interviewing etiquette. And, I got the opportunity interview people such as Daniel Ellsberg, the man who released the Pentagon papers, Barbara Lee, a California congresswoman, and Shanelle Matthews, the communications director for Black Lives Matter.
The money from MDOCS was essential in my ability to afford living in San Francisco, and traveling to and from work. I am grateful to MDOCS for the opportunity to learn by doing and improve my journalistic skills. I was fully immersed in the newsroom atmosphere and through this immersion was able to both prove myself a capable reporter and improve my storytelling skills.
-Written by Clara-Sophia, '20