FAMU newscast airs live four times a week

News anchors on the university’s “News 20 at Five” newscast are about to get a taste of business growth.

Starting Wednesday, September 17, the staff of the once twice a week newscast will begin airing live four days a week.

William Jiles, a broadcast professor, said he is thrilled about the transformation.

“This is something that we have been wanting to do,” said Jiles, who teaches Advanced TV News.

“Going four days a week on a daily basis will allow our students to get the kind of experience they need when they go out into the workplace where they will begin working professionally. We want to come as close to the real world as possible. In our minds we are the real world. We are shoulder to shoulder with other professional journalists out on the street,” he added.

Dorothy Bland, Director of the Division of Journalism, agrees with Jiles. She said she is proud of her students and commends them on their efforts.

“I think it is clearly a wonderful opportunity and a bit of a stretch,” Bland said. “It gives the students more tools in their arsenal as they get ready to enter the real world. I think it gives them an opportunity to have real world experience (and) a better sense of the rigor that goes into producing a newscast.”

Brent Hatchett, 21, serves as one of the main news anchors in the broadcast. Hatchett said he is eager about the expansion.

“I’m excited because we’re laying the foundation for the future,” said Hatchett, a senior broadcast journalism student from Detroit.

“We’re doing something that only one other university does and we’re the only HBCU doing it,” he said.

Jiles also added the newscast is getting “stronger and stronger” every semester.