Nyesha Stone –
The first recipient of the Eric Von Fellowship, Teran Powell has received her first publication with National Public Radio (NPR). The story aired on March 7 and Powell’s hoping to do it again.
Thanks to her fellowship and hard work, Powell has been working with WUWM 89.7 since September of last year and will continue until this September. Every morning, Powell and the team have a newsroom meeting, and when Powell’s news director gave her a story that had a national angle, she pitched it to NPR.
WUWM is Milwaukee Public Radio, which is a branch of NPR, and Powell has produced content for the station, but this time she was aiming for something different.
According to Powell, the station has a number they call to reach NPR’s news desk to pitch stories that have a national angle.
A candidate running for Governor of Wisconsin, Kelda Roys breastfeed her daughter on camera, which caused lots of controversies, and due to her role in politics, it was a great angle to pitch to NPR, so Powell did.
After calling multiple times, Powell’s pitch was accepted, meaning her story wouldn’t just be heard on Milwaukee’s NPR station, but on NPR stations across the nation.
She quickly wrote up a script, recorded herself reading the script and sent a draft to NPR. After a few changes, she was put on air.
“I will continue to find those stories that should reach a national audience,” said Powell.
Powell appreciates her fellowship because, after graduation from Marquette University, she lacked experience. Through the fellowship, she discovered a passion for radio. Powell has a degree in Journalism, but radio is her newest dream.
“People should pay attention to it [the fellowship],” said Powell. “Don’t be discouraged by a year, it’s a great opportunity. It’s something that makes me stay here [Milwaukee.]”
Powell is from the Southside of Chicago and with Milwaukee being its “cousin city,” and by living in Milwaukee, she sees the similarities the cities have.
“Milwaukee has opened me up to a lot of issues people of color face and Chicago has an equal problem,” said Powell. “I think Milwaukee is a smallermarket, but it’s preparing me to go to a bigger market.”
Powell took the route of journalism because of the lack of representation of people of color, and with her previous experience and WUWM, she feels she’s doing her part.
“This is something I’m really passionate about,” said Powell. “I want to be the one to tell stories,” and by doing so, give minorities a positive place in the media.