Undergraduate Communication majors get an opportunity on WTAE-TV Channel 4

The opportunities of a Communication major even expose you to use your rhetoric for TV and Radio. 

Prior to fall break, the region’s ABC-TV news affiliate, WTAE-TV Channel 4, requested Dept of Communication Political Communication and Presidential Rhetoric instructor Dr. Jerry Shuster, to recommend students for a special project associated with the third presidential debate.  Specifically Channel 4 News wanted students to represent the “millenials’” perspective of the presidential campaign and the debate itself.

Students from area colleges and universities were interviewed.with Luke Olander, sophomore communication/history major and Christa Brashier, senior PITT communication/ professional writing major were chosen for the project.  Christa Brashier provided on-air background identifying what both candidates needed to do to achieve success in the debate. She also detailed the millennial perspective for this election.  Her on-air comments ran twice during the station’s prime time news Tuesday prior to the debate.

Luke Olander provided on-air commentary immediately prior to the debate and live post debate analysis during the 11:00 p.m. news.

Neither student, both currently taking Shuster’s Political Communication class, were provided scripted material and neither had access to use of a teleprompter.  Station professionals were highly complimentary of both students and one anchor characterized both as very professional and articulate especially since both essentially spoke impromptu on camera.  Under consideration by the station is the plan to have both back on election night and work with the news professionals as election results are gathered and aired.

Shuster himself is identified by Channel 4 as the station’s political analyst and regularly does analysis for the station as well as other print and electronic media locally. regionally, and internationally.  Since the April primary election, he has completed more than 100 interviews and is always identified by his role with Pitt’s Department of Communication and the two political courses he teaches.