|APTRA Academy 2002 is the most dramatic
STUDENTS SPEAK OUT!
With the help of Public Information Officers from the
Los Angeles County Fire Department, the LAPD and the
Federal Drug Enforcement Administration, this year's
boot camp for aspiring reporters and anchors the best
LA County Fire Department water dropping helicopters,
a hazmat team, a firefighting team, an LAPD black and
white with lights and sirens blaring, the presence of
the DEA -- an arrest & perp walk, mock news conferences
-- Star Trek Enterprise's Vaughn Armstrong as an emotional
victim --- file tape of brushers, methlab explosion
video and much more turned the Cottontail Ranch in Malibu
into a virtual theme park for aspiring newspeople.
This year's breaking news story was a wildfire triggered
by a methlab explosion responded to by a joint LAPD/DEA
task force. The Anchor Academy played with a similar
theme. The goal was for each student to make a realistic
demo tape. The goal was met!
Thanks to all of the mentors who participated and students
who came from as far away as New York!
We'll have much more on APTRA Academy 2002 next week,
but for now here are some of the reactions from several
students and a mentor:
"APTRA Academy was powerful. I could not find
this kind of on-air practice and coaching anywhere else
for this cost. All the mentors were passionate and knowledgeable.
I'll be coming back. It was well worth the trip from
New York." -- Ray East
"I can't believe the level of participation from
the mentors. APTRA staff, and Public Information Officers.
I came for a demo tape and I'm leaving with much more.
Thank you! -- Heather Hutchins
"This is a great program. What made it so great
was the mentors and professionals who came together
to help out. In such a small time I've gained so much
information. Thank you for creating a program for aspiring
reporters." -- Amanda Jaurigui
"The experience was unbelievable. It's nothing
I would've ever imagined. We received great advice from
very helpful professionals. It was just like the real
thing. Thanks! -- Rachel Salazar
"As a former student and two time mentor, this
year's academy was by far the best example of a breaking
news story for aspiring broadcasters. -- Natalie Tejeda
"What made APTRA boot camp great was the mentors;
they weren't retirees or wanna-bes, they were among
the most successful professional writers, producers
and reporters in LA. I learned so much!" -- Susan