For the second year, the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences tapped Fordham students to help presenters give out Emmy awards for news and documentaries.

The ceremonies took place on Sept. 27 and 28 at the Palladium Theater in Manhattan. Two students assisted the production on stage during the broadcast, while six others helped backstage.

The group, a mix of undergraduate and graduate students, was invited to attend a pre-ceremony reception, where they rubbed elbows with some of the biggest names in broadcast journalism.

CBS and CNN Intern Meets News Anchor

Skylar D. Harris, a senior journalism major at Fordham College at Rose Hill, was one of the two envoys who ferried Emmy statuettes from backstage to presenters and escorted participants off stage after their speeches. Harris had worked backstage at last year’s ceremony and was excited to step out into the limelight.

“It was really an amazing opportunity to be on the stage for those few seconds, just chatting with people like [CBS Evening News Anchor] Norah O’Donnell,” she said.

“I interned for CBS Philadelphia last year, so I was already familiar with her. It was great to see her in person and chat with her.”

In addition to meeting people who work at CNN, where she’ll begin interning next week, Harris said she also met people who work behind the scenes to keep the industry functioning. One was a representative from a company that uses technology to detect whether a photo has been digitally manipulated.

“It’s a big problem now, especially with AI-generated images,” she said. “It was new to me, and it was good that we’re finding these solutions to try to improve the public trust in news.”

Master’s Student Makes Connections

Alexander Hom and Jane Pauley
Alexander Hom and Jane Pauley

Harris was joined by Alexander Hom, who graduated from Fordham College at Rose Hill last year with a journalism degree and who is pursuing a master’s degree in public media at the Graduate School of Arts and Science this year.

“It was definitely life-changing, and I don’t use that phrase lightly,” he said.

Hom opted not to submit an application to attend the ceremony last year because it conflicted with a class. This year, he was determined to go. Like Harris, he hopes to work in broadcast journalism full-time and is hopeful that the connections he made at the reception will result in a position at a network. He grew up watching CBS Sunday Morning, so meeting CBS National Security Correspondent David Martin was a treat, he said.

Meeting Jane Pauley

Meeting CBS Sunday Morning anchor Jane Pauley during the ceremony was the biggest highlight, though.

“We were handing out the trophies, and we got to the category of Outstanding Recorded News Program. One of the nominees was CBS Sunday Morning, so I had a very restrained showing of delight when they won. One of their producers gave the address, and as they were leaving, Pauley took the time to say hi. I shook her hand, and I said, ‘I grew up watching CBS Sunday Morning, so I’ve been listening to you half my life.’”

“She said, ‘Oh, that’s really touching, it’s a pleasure to have you here.’


Patrick Verel is a news producer for Fordham Now. He can be reached at [email protected] or (212) 636-7790.