Mentor of the Month: Nydia Han

Instead of a traditional paired mentor-mentee program this year, we are featuring monthly Q&A’s with mentors about how they broke into journalism, what their day is like, and any advice they have for young journalists. From there, students or anyone else (“mentees”) can email the mentors with any questions or set up informational interviews.

Our sixth Mentor of the Month is Nydia Han (@nydia_han), consumer reporter and co-anchor of Action News Sunday mornings for 6abc. Ask her anything via Nydia.H.Han@abc.com.

Q: What is your current position/outlet?

I’m an anchor/consumer investigative reporter/Troubleshooter for 6abc Action News, the ABC owned and operated station in Philadelphia. Our call letters are WPVI-TV.

Q: Did you always want to work in journalism? How did you break into TV news?

I went to Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism with the intention of writing for magazines. I knew I wanted to be a journalist since high school but I accidentally “caught” the TV bug after doing an internship at KGO, the ABC station in San Francisco, while in college. I loved the medium… the power of moving pictures/audio, the immediacy, and the energy of the TV news environment.

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Mentor of the Month: Drew Lazor

Instead of a traditional paired mentor-mentee program this year, we are featuring monthly Q&A’s with mentors about how they broke into journalism, what their day is like, and any advice they have for young journalists. From there, students or anyone else (“mentees”) can email the mentors with any questions or set up informational interviews.

Our fifth Mentor of the Month is Drew Lazor (@drewlazor), a freelance food writer who has a regular column in Philadelphia Daily News and also has contributed to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Food Network, Serious Eats, and Lucky Peach. Ask him anything via andrewlazor@gmail.com.

Q: How long have you been a freelance writer? Did you have a full-time staff gig before you went freelance?

I’ve been working as a freelance writer full-time since June 2012. Before that, I worked at the Philadelphia City Paper for six years, most notably in an Associate Editor role, which involved everything from food/drink/film/music coverage to web/social media duties. Nowadays, I work both locally and nationally. I write a regular column for the Philadelphia Daily News, and also contribute to the Philadelphia Inquirer, philly.com and so on. Nationally, I’m a contributor to outlets like Food Network, Food Republic, Lucky Peach, PUNCH, Serious Eats, etc.

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Mentor of the Month: Stephen Jiwanmall

Instead of a traditional paired mentor-mentee program this year, we are featuring monthly Q&A’s with mentors about how they broke into journalism, what their day is like, and any advice they have for young journalists. From there, students or anyone else (“mentees”) can email the mentors with any questions or set up informational interviews.

Our fourth Mentor of the Month is Stephen Jiwanmall (@SteveJiwanmall), a video reporter for three Calkins Media newspapers in suburban Philadelphia. Ask him anything via stephen.jiwanmall@gmail.com.

Q: What is your current position, and how long have you been working there?

I’m currently a video reporter for three suburban Philadelphia newspapers: the Bucks County Courier Times, The Intelligencer and the Burlington County Times. I started as an associate producer in May 2013. Continue reading

Mentor of the Month: Julie Shaw

Instead of a traditional paired mentor-mentee program this year, we are featuring monthly Q&A’s with mentors about how they broke into journalism, what their day is like, and any advice they have for young journalists. From there, students or anyone else (“mentees”) can email the mentors with any questions or set up informational interviews.

Our third Mentor of the Month is Julie Shaw (@julieshawphilly) of the Philadelphia Daily News. Ask her anything via julie_shaw_ny@hotmail.com.

Q: What is your current position, and how long have you been working there?

I cover the Criminal Justice Center (city criminal court) and the federal court for the Philadelphia Daily News. I have been working at the Daily News since January 2007.

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EVENT: How to Make It as a Freelancer

No full-time job? No problem. At next month’s AAJA Philly event, learn from AAJA members and other local journalists who are making a living freelancing. Their stories, videos and photos have been published in outlets like The New York Times, Reuters, The Washington Post, NPR, Philadelphia Magazine, and WHYY. In this panel discussion, we’ll go over how to get your start, how to pitch and how to make sure you get paid. Coffee and donuts will be served.

When: 3 to 5 PM, Sunday, April 19
Where: Temple University, in Annenberg Hall, basement, room 3 (on 13th Street, between Norris and Diamond)
Cost: Free for chapter members, $3-5 donations for public
RSVP: By Friday, April 10 to aajaphiladelphia@gmail.com.

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John Curley Scholarship Fund

The AAJA National Convention in San Francisco — from August 12 to 15 this year — will be a wonderful opportunity to network with other journalists from around the country, to participate in panel discussions with seasoned journalists, and to attend a career fair and résumé critique sessions.

For the sixth year in a row, AAJA-Philadelphia will be offering the John Curley Scholarship. This year, we will offer one scholarship, to help pay the expenses for one member to go to the annual convention.

Our ability to do so comes from the kind generosity of our donor, John Curley, the former president, chairman and CEO of the Gannett company, who has been a strong supporter of the Philadelphia chapter of AAJA. Continue reading

Mentor of the Month: Alex Lewis

Instead of a traditional paired mentor-mentee program this year, we are featuring monthly Q&A’s with mentors about how they broke into journalism, what their day is like, and any advice they have for young journalists. From there, students or anyone else (“mentees”) can email the mentors with any questions or set up informational interviews.

Our second Mentor of the Month is Alex Lewis (@alexjrlewis), an independent radio producer who has worked on stories for Marketplace, All Things Considered, and NewsWorks. Ask him anything via alexjrlewis@gmail.com.

Q: What is your current position, and how long have you been working there?

I’m an independent radio producer based here in Philadelphia. Currently, I work part-time as a producer at WHYY, produce several podcasts, make freelance public radio stories, and I’m helping to start a youth radio station at a local non-profit. So, depending on how you look at it, you could say I work for myself or that I work for a bunch of different organizations.  I’ve been a full-time freelancer since June 2013. Continue reading