PRSSA holds first annual sports panel
By Estefani Hernandez | Published March 29, 2017
Kean University’s Public Relations student society of America (PRSSA) held its first Sports Communication and Careers Panel Discussion to discuss what to expect in the sports industry on Monday, March 28 in the Center for Academic Success.
The main theme of this event was to provide students with expertise in the journalism, radio, broadcast and public relations field. The event included four sports panelists; Al Dukes, Executive Producer of The Boomer & Carton Show, Jerry Barca, film producer and adjunct professor, George Falkowski, who worked for News 12 and the New England Sports Network and Chris Brienza who oversees Coyne public relations sports and media practice areas.
All four panelists shared their reasoning behind choosing the sports field and shared all of the struggles and obstacles that each of them faced, but also encouraged students to major in the sports industry.
“Don’t be stopped by anyone saying no, confidence is critical, you will get a lot of no’s but you keep that confidence and just never let anyone stop you.” said Barca.
Additionally, the panelists offered advice to students.
“Being able to reach a bigger mass audience, in radio, there are lots of other competitors in the morning, so in radio, you should cover stuff that appeals to everyone,” said Dukes. “You have to know your audience, and know who is watching.”
With the panel being dominated by males and half the audience being females, the panelists were also asked by the audience if there are more opportunities in sports news for women. In response, Falkowski gave his thoughts on women majoring in sports.
“Women have a hard time in the past, but today it is more common to see a woman covering sports,” said Falkowski. “Women get more respect today and definitely have more opportunities in this field.”
Furthermore, Dukes began his broadcasting career producing sports talks programs in Tampa, Florida. He is a former graduate of Kean University and Indiana State University, where he earned a Master of Science in Communications.
Barca produced and appears in the ESPN 30 for 30 documentary “Catholics vs. Convicts” which debuted in December of 2016. He is the author of “Big Blue Wrecking Crew: Smashmouth Football”, A little bit of crazy as well as “Unbeatable: Notre Dame’s 1988 Championship and the Last Great College Football Season.
Falkowski, spent more than 30 years in sports and news television, most notably with the New England Sports Network. He also spent time as a sports anchor, reporter and news reporter for News 12 New Jersey. He currently teaches communication courses at Kean.
Brienza brings nearly 20 years of senior level public relations, media relations and strategic communications experience from his experience at Coyne.
Students enjoyed the panelists and what experiences they brought to the panel that they shared.
“I thought all the panelists gave great advice,” said Keila Marie, sophomore. “I loved listening to their stories and all the advice that they gave us was very helpful.”