Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Debra McGaughey, her legacy, and what it takes to become a journalist

- Debra McGaughey at Tsu

 On the morning of Wednesday of April 10, 2019, at Texas Southern University, Houston Texas, students in class journalism 130 had the pleasure of meeting the legendary Debra McGaughey, the Director of Communication Services for Houston Community College Central campus. Many may remember her, she was the face, seen daily on channel 11 Dallas news for over a decade. Her expertise in journalism has paved the way for more many upcoming journalists. within the field of communication studies.
McGaughey was from Brooklyn New York. Like any other High school student, when she graduated she had no idea of what she wanted to study. Luckily when she arrived at college, one professor encouraged her to pursue journalism because she had a way of effectively writing within her work.  After giving it much thought, she explained her starting point within her studies of journalism. McGaughey ended up at Boston State University, studying in one of the best journalism programs in the country. She loved Boston. As a young girl growing up in a big city, Boston often reminded her of home.
            During her lecture, McGaughey gave a few pointers on how to become the best journalist. She encouraged the importance of staying focus, becoming an intern, and lastly, the importance of mastering the art of written language. McGaughey also described the ways in which journalism has now changed. she stressed the importance of knowing how to edit and shoot your own projects. “Jobs in media has changed, it’s not just about being good in front of the camera, its also about being able to edit on all editing platforms and write scripts behind the scenes”, Mcgauhey stated.
            After her 14 years of being a news reporter, she felt it was time to move on, she ventured into Higher education, where she began a career at Houston Community College (HCC) This was where she put her media skills to work as she took on the role of
- Debra McGaughey at Tsu
general manager of HCC-TV. This was HCC’s current Television station. Within this role, she was able to take control of the direction she wanted the program to move, create great content, manage creative people, and lastly, help the community by using her platform to tell stories that the African American people would relate to. It was in this content that she mastered her skills in TV editing.
            Making her mark at HCC, she eventually went on to become the Public relations director where she put to work, all of the skills she had developed throughout her career McGauhey not only gives credit to herself but to the professor who encouraged her to go into journalism. She urges students to take a step back and asses their options. “if Are you a shy person” She states, “you cannot be afraid to speak to people, this is one of the most important parts of journalism, being able to communicate,” she concluded.