Communication Department Hosts Journalism Panel

Matt Ryan, Associate Editor-in-Chief

On Thursday, February 23, Villanova’s Communication Department hosted its second annual journalism panel in Garey Hall. The panel was moderated by Michael Bradley, an assistant instructor in the Communication Department.


This year’s event focused on TV Journalism. Students heard from Fox 29’s Alex Holley, 6ABC Action News’ Corey Davis and CBS News Philadelphia’s Jessica Kartalija and Pat Gallen.


For the first hour, Bradley presented a wide range of questions to the panel, from their personal journeys to the current media landscape.


“What I have learned is, the best thing is for me to ask a question, and then get out of the way,” Bradley said. “Let them talk. And we had a lot of good banter between them, and they played off of each other, and that’s what makes a good panel discussion.”


The final 30 minutes opened questions to the audience, in which there were about 50 people. Some of the main topics discussed by the panelists were the need for versatility and paying your dues. Everyone on the panel began at a lower level position, something that was pivotal in helping them get where they are today, and they all preached that companies are looking for well-rounded employees.


One of the students in attendance was senior Meghann Morhardt. Although Morhardt is majoring in mechanical engineering, she is pursuing a career as a print journalist.


“I thought it was really interesting,” Morhardt said. “As someone who doesn’t know much about what it takes to be a TV journalist, I thought it was cool to kind of hear their perspectives. And I also thought it was cool to see the crossover between TV and written journalism. So I still thought that it was beneficial, even as someone who doesn’t necessarily want to be on TV.”


The four panelists come from various roles in TV journalism.


Since 2014, Holley has been a host on Fox 29’s “Good Day Philadelphia,” which takes place in the morning from 6:00 am to 10:00 a.m. Holley also has a big presence on social media with more than 319,000 followers on Instagram and more than 100,000 followers on Twitter.


Davis has been a reporter for 6ABC Action News since 2019, and previously spent time working in Florida. For two years, Davis was his own team, writing, shooting and editing his own stories.


Kartalija, who has been on TV for over 20 years, is an anchor on CBS News Philadelphia’s evening news. She has worked in Philadelphia since 2018, after coming from CBS Baltimore, where she anchored the 5:00 p.m. news.


Beginning in 2016, Gallen became a sports anchor and reporter for CBS News Philadelphia. The Philadelphia native has covered high profile events such as the Super Bowl, World Series and NCAA Final Four.


“I wanted to have a diverse group of positions,” Bradley said. “Their experiences were all the same, but different, if you know what I mean. And they were able to give the students different looks on what people have to do on TV. They think, ‘Oh, you’re on TV, all you do is talk to a camera.’ There’s a lot of different things that go into the different roles.”


Bradley noted that this will be an annual event going forward, and, each year, the panel will feature different journalists.


“It was a big success,” Bradley said. “They were very expansive with what they talked about. They were receptive to the students’ questions. And they provided a lot of good information, and some tips that I think everybody was able to use.”