The student newspaper of Bucks County Community College

The Centurion

The student newspaper of Bucks County Community College

The Centurion

The student newspaper of Bucks County Community College

The Centurion

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Gen Z Bucks Students Put to the Test: MSNBC Interview

Courtesy of BCCC Marketing and Public Relations

Six Bucks Journalism Students were chosen to be interviewed by MSNBC for a really cool news story that we can’t talk about yet. 

On April 23, the students were put to the test. Abby Palmieri (21), Christian Grosso (22), Ray Varela-Urizar (26), Raeanne Raccagno (20), Jesse Fischer (20) and I (22) were interviewed by the “Morning Joe” team from MSNBC. 

We were placed on a panel and interviewed by Morgan Radford. This whole opportunity was such an honor. We were all intimidated to start, but once the interview started, the energy in the room became so calm and respectful. 

We were asked some really complex questions, and were tested on certain topics, but we had such a beautiful discussion because of it. 

Jesse Fischer said, “I was definitely a little nervous, it wasn’t bad actually doing it though. Once Morgan came in it eased me a bit more, and once we were in the thick of it I was fine.” 

Radford was a great professional example to us as students. She made sitting under the bright lights feel like nothing and created an environment where we felt safe to express our opinions. 

Ray Varela-Urizar said that going into it, “I was excited, I was ready to talk and I was excited to give reasons as to why I think the way I think, but also to hear opinions from those at the professional level.” 

Fischer agreed that it was a hefty position to be in but was proud of our responses. “I mean it feels good, I feel like we all did a good job representing our age group. We have a really smart class with a lot of opinions that are worth listening to.” 

Varela-Urizar said that it “definitely felt surreal, especially because sometimes we can get so lost in our head instead of what’s reality. We will be the leaders of the world one day, so it’s important to do this work.”

Journalism Professor and Advisor of “The Centurion,” Tony Rogers was watching us on the panel with pride. He said, “I think they were amazing; I think they did well on the test, but even more: they were articulate, composed and well-spoken when it came to the interview questions.” 

“The students showed that community colleges have bright and thoughtful students who can stand toe to toe with any other 4-year college student. It was one of those moments that makes it all worthwhile as a teacher. This is what it’s all about. I am very, very proud,” Rogers said. 

“Nicole Tracey (Dean of the Lang and Lit Department) and I were practically doing high fives. We were so impressed by how they were doing,” he added. 

We were also incredibly impressed with the process and professionalism of the NBC crew. They made it so easy for us as students, and answered any questions we had about careers in journalism. 

Rogers said, “I thought it was interesting to see the process too, the dynamic between the reporter and the producer was really fascinating to watch. The tech guys were in there at like eight in the morning, two hours before it began to set up the cameras and the lights.”

He continued, “You can tell the people at NBC really pay attention to their craft, they have a very high standard set, and you can see the work they do in maintaining that standard. It’s rare to see the behind-the-scenes process. It was a really fascinating look into network TV being created. Very valuable.”

Fischer was impressed too, “I will say for one that it was really interesting to see what goes into a segment like that, and all of the setting up they did, all of the lights and tech they had.”

You can watch us in early May 2024. We will be on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” segment. We are excited for everyone to find out what we discussed, and the implications it has for all of our futures!