NBC’s Kevin Corke gives advice to student journalists
At the 4th annual John E. Holden Journalism Lecture, NBC News White House correspondent Kevin Corke addressed the crowd with “Saints, Scoundrels and Scribes: Covering the 2008 Presidential Campaign”.
Corke chose not to give the lecture as an inside look at the candidates, or what he expects to happen in 2008. Instead, he encouraged people to get involved with the system.
“Tonight we demand straight-forward answers,” Corke said. “We need to tell politicians to get real, get honest, or get out, or else we will throw you out.”
After asking the crowd to take pleasure in this moment of history where an African-American, a female and a Mormon are all running for president, Corke broke down his saints, scoundrels and scribes idea.
“The saints are those dedicated to finding the truth, the scoundrels are there to intentionally mislead and the scribes, sadly are both,” Corke said. “Then there are those that run for office.”
Corke enjoys his job and relishes his opportunities to ask questions of some of the biggest names in politics, he said.
“I get to see them all and challenge them all,” Corke said. “We are eye-witnesses in history, and I get a front-row seat with a little popcorn on the way.”
The NBC correspondent emphasized how much impact each person, especially journalists, has on the future of America. Corke encouraged the journalism students of CU to use him as a tool, and allow him to represent them with the honesty of his questions.
“The road to the White House in 2008 goes through Boulder,” Corke said. “What are we willing to do, to know more about our world?”
Corke challenged the crowd to be better journalists by being forceful, respectful and most of all, genuine.
“We as journalists must make the best decisions to protect democracy,” Corke said. “It begins with us, so get busy, get bold or get nothing.”
Corke answered questions from the audience on everything from tips on how to break into journalism, to his best and worst experiences with saint and scoundrel politicians.
The advice Corke offered to journalism students was embraced and applauded.
“As journalists, we are obligated to get you involved,” Corke said. “We cannot sit back and do big-picture stuff all of the time. We need to wake people up.”
Corke also spoke about ideas to change the world of television and politics to raise ratings.
“We need to change the way we present debates,” Corke said. “Say we were to set up a debate like a boxing match, Clinton vs. Edwards on Pay-Per-View. Then more people would watch.”
As a journalist, Corke shared that through politics he has seen the best and the worst of humanity, but more importantly that he is here to fight for journalism’s integrity.
“I have a job to do, I have to get my questions answered,” Corke said. “Know that we are right, and that we are fair.”
Contact Campus Press Staff writer Clare Lane at email@example.com