Lovely to e-meet you! My name is Joann Pan. I am a graduate journalism student at New York University in the Reporting the Nation in Multimedia program. I graduated from the University at Buffalo with honors, double majoring in communication and English.
I started my journalism career as a writer and editor at UB. I remember being a freshman and receiving my first slug to cover a UB Student Association event. I was terrified that I would misquote students or miss a key detail in the story. All the nerves (reading the story over 27 times before turning it in) paid off, I made the next morning’s front page of The Spectrum. I was hooked from then on.
I was lucky to be at a university where our student publication was truly an institution. It is considered a vital source of local news for Buffalo and Amherst residents. The student paper is promptly delivered to local coffee shops, bookstores, dorms and storefronts three times a week. The Spectrum helps connects the school’s 30,000 students directly to the off-campus communities where they live, work and spend time. UB’s immense impact on community as a large research university, pulling in students and professionals who support the upstate economy, meant we had much to write about. We covered crime, breaking news, community disputes, SUNY-system budget hearings, local culture, food, and much more.
As a news desk editor and managing editor, I became deeply connected with my university’s campuses, SUNY-wide politics and the city of Buffalo during four years I was away from my home in NYC. It was a great learning experience. Senior year, I took on a lighter project with a few students to compiled undergraduate research and art for a Gender Institute-supported publication called Speakeasy. Working at this publication with passionate people who wanted to share amazing student work — research, poetry and art — was inspiring. (Fun fact: my college roommate created it and really nurtured it into a blossoming publication that still exists today!)
These experiences have lead to incredible opportunities such as interviewing Bill Nye, Harold Ford, and Anna Quindlen. I learned many things covering school events, meetings and tragedies, including the aftermath of the crash of Flight 1407. I have learned passion and patience always pay in the world of journalism.
My favorite moment in college reporting was winning the Story of the Year for Feature Writing in 2007 after writing about the lack of sexual assaults reported at the University at Buffalo. I spoke to students, counselors, and the university chief of police about the skewed statistics, which were not reflecting the reality of sexual abuse involving students.
Currently, I am learning all that I can as an news intern at Mashable, a contributing web producer at O magazine and a graduate journalism student at NYU.
In my free time, I am working on traveling across the U.S. and around the world. Places I’ve been and loved: San Francisco, Los Angeles, Costa Rica (Caribbean side), London, Rome and Paris. Places I want to go in the next 10 years — I have a pinboard for that.
If you would like to know more, please don’t hesitate to ask.