Sexism in broadcast news

Female journalists have received a lot of backlash for their vocal opinions, particularly in TV reporting. Even when women are fully educated, capable, and deserving of their position, men still feel the need to make them feel less than.

Women are being harassed by men on the air. They’re being taken down by politicians, officials, and even other journalists.

Harassment towards female reporters is something that is increasingly common on cable TV. The Huffington Post wrote an article and created a compilation video showing the blatant disrespect towards women journalists.


One specific example involved Megyn Kelly, a United Sates journalist, and political commentator on FOX News. She was labeled as being, “fascinated by sex” by a politician, Newt Gingrich. Continue reading

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Job shadow: Emily Miels, entertainment reporter

Since I can remember, I’ve wanted to become a journalist. Journalism has always been on my mind and it’s a dream come true that I can make a career out of writing. I knew that I wanted to do something with current events, but I wasn’t sure what that would entail. So, with the help of Emily Miels, I found the type of writing I’d like to focus in on.

Miels graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh. She has a degree in journalism and music business. She had always planned to attend the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire because that’s where her sister attended college, but she decided that Oshkosh was the best fit for her, personally.


Emily Miels works in her office at the Leader Telegram. ©2017 Jessica Meyen

Before she joined the Leader Telegram, she wrote for a program called Will Write For Food, as a student journalist. She was a part of the New Richmond News as a summer intern in 2012, a Fond du Lac reporter in 2013, and an Advance-Titan editor for 3 years. She even  worked as a social media intern for the Oshkosh Door Company.

One of the most interesting aspects of her preprofessional experiences, in her opinion, was when she went to a homeless shelter in Florida for 3 days. She lived there and reported about particular instances in the shelter and the people that lived there.

In January of 2014 Miels graduated from college and in February of 2014 she got hired as a reporter at the Leader Telegram. In December of 2014 she joined the entertainment section.

The reason I chose to shadow an entertainment reporter, is because that’s what I want to do in the future. And Miels made me certain about my decision.

When I asked her about her job at the Leader Telegram she gave me a plethora of tasks that she deals with on a weekly basis. The list was exhaustive.

She handles 5 entertainment pages per week. She has 3 stories due on Sundays and 2 stories due on Thursdays. She covers all local stories. She even has a weekly event calendar that helps her keep track of everything.

Some of her favorite projects in Eau Claire include covering the music festivals, the community theater shows, and the jazz programs.

I appreciate the opportunity to shadow such an accomplished reporter. I take all of her advice that she gave to heart because she achieved her goal, like I one day hope to achieve my goal.

She acquires her success to her many writing experiences before she went in to the real world. Miels expounds on the importance of internships in the clip.

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Speech Blog

A transgender supermodel talked about the importance of coming out and how she’s never turning back.

“I stand here as a proud transgender of color”, Geena Rocero said.

Geena Rocero is a Filipino American supermodel and transgender advocate from New York City.dsc02081

Rocero spoke at the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire, in Schofield Auditorium on Thursday, March 2, 2017. She spoke to a room full of 175 people. The title of her speech was, Why I Must Come Out.

Her speech began by explaining that she grew up in the Philippines. Part of their religious practices involved transgender beauty pageants. When she was 7 years old she went to these pageants with her friend and something happened inside of her. She felt connected to these women.

“I thought I could be just like them”, Rocero said.

Once the winner of the pageant was crowned, people started throwing chairs and bottles at her. A protest broke out. People called her an abomination. From that moment on, Rocero saw that as a metaphor of how she would live her life.

“Peoples ignorance could never be my internal reality”, Rocero said.

When Rocero was 15 years old, and still dressing as a boy, she was approached by a transgender beauty pageant manager. Her name was Tiger Lily. In her first pageant she won best in swimsuit, long gown, and was second runner up out of 40 contestants. She was living her dream.

In 2001, her mother called her, saying that her green card petition came through. At first Rocero was hesitant, but once she figured out that she could change her name and gender marker in the United States, she was all in.

In 2005, she moved to New York City to become a supermodel. At that time there wasn’t any out transgender models. So, she decided to keep her transgender journey to herself.

“I remember going to castings and looking at myself with pride, but going home and crying because I didn’t want anybody to find out”, Rocero said about her decision. She had a lot of fear and shame because she felt she wasn’t being fully seen.

When Rocero reached the age of 30, she decided she wanted to come out through a TED Talk. From that moment on her life was changed.


Once the speech was finished I interviewed an audience member, named Kessa Albright. She had only praise for Rocero’s speech. “I think Geena Rocero was beautiful. She said a lot of powerful things. My favorite part was when she was talking about transgender youth. She said that everybody needs to live their truth”, Albright said.

She is now an activist for Gender Proud and speaks around the world about her journey. Rocero has had a great support system throughout her journey. In the speech and while answering some of the questions at the end, she talked about her mom and how loved her mother made her feel, but she realizes that not everyone can be so lucky. She offers this advice to those who don’t have a great support system.

“Despite all of that pain and not knowing my self-worth, I am now a woman living with compassion”, Rocero said.

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Geena Rocero Forum



Geena Rocero speaks to an audience on Thursday evening at UW-Eau Claire about the importance of protecting transgender youth. Photo: Rachyl Houterman


By Rachyl Houterman

A transgender supermodel stressed the importance of protecting and affirming transgender youth in a forum held Thursday night on the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire campus.


“At a young age, trans youth know who they are,” said Geena Rocero, a transgender woman supermodel and transgender rights activist. “We need to protect them.”


Rocero delivered her speech, “Why I Must Come Out,” at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday in Schofield Auditorium at UW-Eau Claire. About 175 students and citizens from the Eau Claire area gathered in the auditorium to listen to the story of Rocero’s coming out and her advocacy efforts to continue the conversation on transgender rights.


Rocero spoke of the importance of acknowledging and protecting transgender youth, the emotional struggles of hiding her identity and the contrasting political and cultural climates between the Philippines and the U.S. for transgender people.


Rocero began her speech by discussing the history of the Philippines and the prominence of transgender beauty pageants in the country. As a young girl, she said she watched the transgender women on stage, hoping one day she could be like them.  


In the Philippines, Rocero said, transgender people are “culturally visible but not politically recognized,” something she said was the opposite in the U.S.


“Society would tell me I am a boy. ‘Be a boy. God made you a boy, be a boy,’” Rocero said. “Later in my life that would take a toll on me, as a young person being told that I am not the person that I am.”


When she was 15 years old, Rocero began competing in transgender beauty pageants, and joined a community she calls her “trans family.” In that community, Rocero said, she felt happy and supported.


Rocero moved to San Francisco in 2001 when she was 17 years old after her mother told her that in the U.S., she could legally change her name and gender marker on legal documents. In 2005, she traveled to New York City to pursue her dreams of becoming a model, but because being a transgender model at the time was “taboo,” she hid her truth from the world.


The emotional toll of hiding who she is, Rocero said, was exhausting. She became depressed despite being happy with seeing herself on magazines, because she was afraid someone would discover her secret.


“I felt that I couldn’t really be myself,” Rocero said. “I was in the fashion industry, an industry that is all about the power of imagery, but I wasn’t fully being seen as I am.”


That contradiction, Rocero said, was damaging to her mental health.


When she was about 30 years old, Rocero decided she had had enough. She made the decision to come out in a TED Talks speech in 2014.


“I was just ready to risk it all,” Rocero said of coming out.


Following her TED Talks speech, Rocero founded Gender Proud, an organization that advocates for transgender rights across the globe. She said it was important to her to continue the conversation on transgender youth and advocating for transgender rights across the world.


“We can’t just advocate for policy without changing the culture. We can’t just change culture and not change the policy,” Rocero said. “Those two things have to work together.”


The introductory speaker, Kezia Jenkins, a senior women studies student and member of the queer community, had high praise for Rocero’s speech.


“I thought that Geena brought up some really great and wonderful points throughout the speech, especially relating to trans youth and the history of colonialism,” Jenkins said.


Annie Titus, a sophomore English student and transgender woman, said speeches such as Rocero’s provide a stress-free environment for those who have questions about their identity.


“I think it offers an area where people have the freedom to step forward and identify out loud their questions about their identity, whether it’s a gender binary or whether it’s a sexual identity,” Titus said. 


Rocero said she remains committed to continuing the conversation in protecting transgender youth and advocating for transgender rights on a global level.


“I am a woman at this point in my life living with a sense of compassion in a world that’s been led to believe that gender is just this very rigid binary, but it’s not.” Rocero said. “We need to free ourselves from this understanding that you have just this boy and a girl, these very limited choices. We have to free ourselves, and when we do, we get to reflect on each other our common humanity, our common struggles.”


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Job Shadow at Target Headquarters

By Kenzie Mueller


Koppel at a meeting with a potential buyer. ©2017 Kenzie Mueller

The idea of working in a large company has always appealed to me, but the exact job title I could someday have with a communications degree is daunting. Target is a business that is successful, inviting and driven towards making improvements among clients and employees. After my job shadow with Kelsie Koppel, a senior sourcing manager at Target Headquarters, I found myself excited in the possibilities my future holds within a large corporation.

Koppel graduated from Gustavus Adolphus College with a degree in Business Management. She had an internship at an insurance company under her belt and a vague idea of what she wanted to do with her degree. Just like me, Koppel job shadowed at Target Headquarters and fell in love with the atmosphere and immediately knew this was the right fit for her. After 8 years and multiple job titles, Koppel has created a family at Target that she wouldn’t trade for anything.

Koppel’s advice in preparing for the workforce is to put yourself out there because you will never know unless you try. Being open to change and staying driven has helped her grow at such a large company.

“The best thing I did for myself was applying to multiple jobs in order to create possibilities for myself in the future” Koppel said.

Koppel started at Target as a specialist in sourcing services in the women’s department and has moved her way up to a senior sourcing manager in the seasonal department. She determines who the vendors will be for certain products and which countries these products will be produced in and negotiates the costs of products on behalf of Target.

Koppel and I started our day at a meeting with her team to talk about a future trip to China, then met with a buyer to discuss deadlines for potential vendors and finished the day off touring different departments within the marketing branch.

Witnessing Koppel at her job was an eye opening experience because I had no idea how much went into each product at Target. Every employee has a specific job that is crucial to keeping the company running smoothly. Koppel is a part of a small team that works on season products, and each team member is in charge of something different that helps put their products on the floor at Target stores around the United States. The vast amount of jobs within a huge corporation such as Target is appealing to me because there are always ways to improve and change if a certain job is not the right fit for you.

Even though I don’t think I will become a sourcing manager at Target Headquarters, this job shadow opened many doors for me. This experience allowed me to see how a business runs on a day to day basis and understand how every member of a company is important and there for a reason. I am thankful I was allowed to experience what a job at Target Headquarters is like because it solidified my desire to work for a large corporation, hopefully in the public relations and marketing department.

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Job Shadow: Leader-Telegram sports reporter Nick Erickson

By Katie Gerber


Reporter Nick Erickson interviews Memorial High School head wrestling coach Randy Belonga
Source: Katie Gerber © 2017

From football to hockey. Girls, boys, high school or college Nick Erickson, a sports reporter for the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram, has covered many sporting events throughout the Chippewa Valley over the last 18 months.

While he attended the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, Erickson worked for The Spectator as a staff writer, sports editor, managing editor and editor in chief. He was also  a part-time employee at the Leader-Telegram during his last two years of  college. After graduating from UW-Eau Claire in May of 2015 Erickson accepted a full-time sports reporter position at the Leader-Telegram.
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Women sports journalists endure harassment

By Katie Gerber


FOX Sports Reporter Erin Andrews interviews South Carolina Gamecocks head coach Steve Spurrier after a September, 2009, game.
Source: Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

It is questionable whether the public really knows the kind of abuse that women in the sports journalism industry face. In August of 2015 Sports Illustrated published an article  detailing the abuse women reporters face in the locker rooms and on the field. Subjects of the interview remained anonymous however they had no problem sharing their stories.

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