By: Jacob Hall, Abigail Clark
LAS VEGAS, Nev. – At the NAB Show, one session honed in on diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives when talking about hiring students right out of college.
Grady Tripp, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer at TEGNA, said that it starts with looking at diversity in journalism schools.
“I would say that first and foremost, what is diversity like in our J-schools and then what storytelling is within J-schools with either a local newspaper or whatever the campus television station,” Tripp said. “Because what we heard from the panel and others is that it’s not just a representation of your newsroom company, but people are also interested in the storytelling that is taking place.”
Tripp said that an important aspect for companies trying to be more diverse and inclusive is to connect with employees from all backgrounds to learn about their experiences.
“Make sure that you are connecting with employees from all backgrounds to understand what their experience is within your organization and address whatever issues or needs they have,” Tripp said. “Because when you have a job opening, if all of your employees aren’t running to their network saying, ‘hey, you got to work here,’ you’ve got to ask yourself some really important questions, right? I think that’s one. I think number two, partnering with colleges and universities as well as other diverse organizations to be able to tap into those networks. So, what partnerships are you creating with the J-school? Are you at campus? Are you reaching out to students to build that future talent?”
Taylor Potter, a current Masters of Fine Arts student at the University of Georgia, said that it’s nice to see sessions taking place regarding representation in the entertainment media space.
“The one that I just came from was about pronunciation and learning how the ‘other’ is represented in entertainment media,” Potter said. “So, we talked a lot about people who are typically classified as ‘other’ in media so whether that be your sexual orientation, your race or other levels of diversity that we are constantly pushing for more inclusion of in entertainment media. How we as members of those communities can push to have a more inclusive entertainment media space where more of the world is represented.”