Mary Frances McGowan is the 2017 JCU/NBC “Meet the Press” Fellowship recipient. McGowan began her nine-month assignment with “Meet the Press” in Fall 2017. In her own words, she shares her exceptional experience.
We are living through extraordinary political times that are putting even the most seasoned of journalists to the test. I could have never predicted that my first year out of college, I would be entering a journalistic world that is grappling with a new presidential administration, unmatched political divisiveness and countless groundbreaking societal moments — and living through them while working at Meet the Press.
Just four months into my time as the 2017-2018 NBC/JCU “Meet the Press” Fellowship recipient, I couldn’t be more thankful for experience I’ve had, especially for the kind and welcoming staff who are carrying on Tim Russert’s legacy.
Every single day, I use the skills I learned as a student at John Carroll University. As a communications and political science double major, I learned to communicate with proficiency and understand the systems that make our local, national, and international governments tick. These skills could not be more essential at “Meet the Press.”
As the fellowship recipient, I have been able to work on in a variety of aspects of political journalism, including researching content for interviews, working with producers throughout the week to create graphics for the show, and working with digital team members to construct a timeline of the story of the Russian investigation.
And as many at ‘Meet the Press” will attest — Sunday is my favorite day of the week. After I arrive at NBC around 5 a.m., I act as the manager of the green room, working with crew members to make sure all of our panelists and interviewees are ready for the show. While it is at times stressful, it never gets old. Each week, the weight of living through history taking place is not lost on me. Being able to meet and speak with the nation’s leading lawmakers, scholars, and journalists, as well as possibly seeing a small contribution you made to the show come alive before you is an absolute honor — and I owe it all to JCU!
Learn more about the John Carroll University’s partnership with NBC News and the “Meet the Press” Fellowship here.