With vaccines on the rise and an end to self-isolation in sight, HOMTV, Meridian Township’s government television station in Okemos, will broadcast its first live show of the year next week.
Some interns haven’t even been able to visit the newsroom. Bryanna Idzior, a senior at MSU and reporting intern at HOMTV, recently interviewed a source via Zoom while she was in the station. Other than the tour of the studio she received when she was first hired on, this was her first time in the newsroom.
“It’s kind of been amazing over the past year or so what journalists have learned what they can do remotely,” Idzior said. “Zoom has been a really great tool to get to speak with people.”
She will be a part of the team filming the Meridian News Now live show. They are planning on working after-hours at the station so that there are less full-time staff in the building to accommodate social distancing.
Kweku Achenie, a junior at MSU and reporting intern at the station, has been a part of the program since mid-January.
“If things were normal, we would have already filmed a live show a couple of times,” Achenie said. “I haven’t even seen any of the other interns in-person yet.”
Brandie Yates, executive producer and communications manager of HOMTV oversees their internship program. Though HOMTV changes its program every semester based on technology and industry standards, Yates said the internship program changed drastically because of COVID-19 and was the largest change they saw at the station.
“I miss the interns being here and having a live newsroom,” Yates said. “There’s nothing like the hustle and bustle of a show in the studio.”
In the interview clip below, Yates speaks more on the changes that had to be made to the internship program.
The station televises township meetings for transparency in government and interview talk shows and creates news programs and produce online content for its website. A lot of this had to change once Coronavirus hit.
“As a television station, we’re very visual,” Yates said. “We need to see people in action and you can tell the story better when it’s in-person. You get the action, and I think that’s partly what’s missing right now.”