KDU University College Mould Burgeoning Newscasters To Face Real World Challenges

KDU Campus Newscasters - Chan Thing, having a real taste of being a news anchor on TV. KDU Campus Newscasters - Teoh Wei Zhuan, having a real taste of being a news anchor on TV.
Chan Thing (from left) and Teoh Wei Zhuan, KDU’s Mass Communication students, both won status as Campus Newscasters after they have gone through a stiff audition. Chan Thing (from left) and Teoh Wei Zhuan, unleash their potential to the full, with knowledge and real world training gained from KDU University College. 
Two students of KDU’s School of Communication and Creative Arts (SCCA), Teoh Wei Zhuan and Chan Thing, made the institution proud by clinching the opportunity to participate in a talent-hunt audition and qualifying to be shortlisted for the Campus Newscaster Workshop, organised by Media Prima’s NTV7 and 8TV, over hundreds of contesters nationwide.

The Campus Newscaster Workshop is an annual programme for new talent recruitment. An initiative of Initiated by Media Prima’s Mandarin news division, the annual Campus Newscaster workshop serves as a platform to discover new talents amongst tertiary student for news-anchoring and TV show-hosting upon their graduation. Students who are eloquent, good in public speaking, passionate in news broadcasting and able to take up different challenges, are encouraged to sign up for the audition for an opportunity to be in the 3-day training workshop.

In line with KDU’s tagline of “Hit the ground running”, Teoh and Chan are actually paving their way in advance to reach out to their goals while still pursuing their studies. One key element the School of Communication and Creative Arts (SCCA) has embraced since its inception, is not only to develop and coach young new talents for the communications and creative arts industries at large, but also to instil positive attitude, high moral standards and strong interpersonal skills, which will ultimately help its students stand head and shoulders above the rest.

Teoh began his journey as a Diploma in Mass Communication student at KDU and is currently pursuing his Bachelor of Communication (Hons) degree at KDU University College’s Utropolis Glenmarie campus. Being an enthusiast of current affairs, he participated in the 2014/2015 Campus Newscaster Workshop to fulfil his passion. “I was in Batch 2 of this annually-held audition, and I have to say, the competition was tough. I was told there were hundreds of interviewees from different campuses around the country, who mostly came from debating teams with perfect eloquence,” recalled Teoh.

Whereas for Chan Thing, who is currently in her second year of Diploma in Mass Communication at KDU, she encountered similar experience as she registered herself into Batch 4 of the 2016/2017 Campus Newscaster Workshop’s audition. She did her audition at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre. “I reached there very much earlier, yet there was already a queue up to number 59!” said Chan. 

The pick for apprentices for each batch was indeed intense. For this occasion, there were 150 students interviewed in 3 stations, but only 45 were recruited.

Despite the surprise, both Teoh and Chan said, they needed to be calm for rounds of assessment which came one after another. “We were asked to read aloud several passages from a news script. And to see what other talents we had, the audition even included several segments such as singing, dancing etc., culminating in a face-to-face interview with the three judges. Throughout the process, we know it was very important for each of us to impress the judges in our own special and unique way,” explained the duo.

“They were not only searching new talent for news anchoring but candidates who might be suitable for other different types of TV shows,” they added.

In the end, Teoh and Chan had clinched their opportunity by being elected Campus Newscasters and entrance to the special training workshop. During the workshop, they went through the whole experience of wardrobe changes and make up sessions, and had their first broadcasting experience to touch, feel and sit on the anchor station, using a teleprompter while having the entire process documented.

Apart from that, there were series of professional training conducted by current TV newscasters, which included news script writing, news reading with accurate pronunciation, cross over, show hosting, resiliency and flexibility, personal image management and so forth.

 “It was too good to be true! I told myself that I had come one step closer to realising my dream. Nevertheless, I knew that I still got some ways to go in order to be successful in this industry, but it’s a great start!” enthused Teoh.

Upon completion of this training, the campus newscasters will need to submit the TV station with 3 copies of in-depth feature write-up on different topics within a year, as a source of TV programme production. The campus newscasters will also get the opportunity to host any event that is co-organised by the TV station and their tertiary institution. Occasionally, they will be also called up to support various TV shows from time to time. For Teoh and Chan, they had recently participated in a music video recording for the coming Chinese New Year.

Throwing back on how they had emerged as winners despite the intense competition during the auditions, Teoh and Chan shared that their state of readiness was due to the KDU lecturers that provided them real-life training in the form of SCCA’s Public Speaking and Radio Broadcast class modules. They could not be more thankful for their support and guidance.

Lastly, the duo attributed their success to the ethos in KDU that has ultimately groomed them in heading for the real world. As beyond the skills and training, finding themselves now in a real world environment, both Teoh and Chan observed that it was honesty, keeping a positive attitude and good character which allowed them and the few others to have made it this far in this once in a lifetime opportunity.