Assistant Professor of Communication Alan Buck was recently hired to help produce U.S. election coverage for international audiences, through a program of the Foreign Press Center.
“During a normal election year, the U.S. Department of State credentials almost 300 international writers, producers, videographers, photographers, and journalists to travel into the U.S. to cover the election,” Buck said. “These journalists gather footage and interviews on the election trail for both parties, then return to their country to air the footage as part of their news coverage.”
Because of COVID-19, travel is limited for international journalists this election year. Therefore, the Foreign Press Center is instead credentialing local producers from each battleground state, including North Carolina, to gather election footage for other countries.
Through the Meridian International Center in Washington, D.C., a nonpartisan global diplomacy organization, Buck was hired as the producer to cover North Carolina.
Buck has spent time interviewing candidates from both sides, election officials and experts, and local citizens about the election. “Just as I teach my students, my goal is to remain unbiased in my interviews and focus on the facts, which is the basis of journalism” he said.
The footage will be shown in over 100 countries and at every U.S. Embassy in the world.
In addition to serving on the faculty for the communication department, Buck is also the director of Meredith’s new digital communication certificate program. He frequently takes on freelance work like this to stay active in the field of communication. In his courses, he assigns client-based projects that provide his students with real-world experience.
“It’s incredibly important to me to stay active in this industry,” said Buck. “Not only do opportunities like this give me additional professional experience, they also give me the ability to share that experience with my students.”