Two weeks after graduating from Chapman with a double major in Communication studies and Television and audiovisual journalism, Alli Friedman packed his bags and moved to Montana to become a journalist. “I did that for about a year,” the Dodge College alumni say, “then I moved into production.”
Alli briefly worked for KSBY-TV in California before taking a job in 2016 as a producer with Denver7 in Colorado. In 2020, she was promoted to executive producer of the Denver7 News. With new responsibilities came new honors, and in 2021 Alli received an Emmy for Outstanding Live News Producer.
We asked Alli about his time at Chapman and how his experiences here impacted his career.
Who was the most influential person for you at Chapman? Why?
I can’t pinpoint a specific individual because each teacher has had such an impact on my career. However, working with my classmates from Chapman News has been the key to helping me succeed in the world of information. Having the opportunity to develop skills, learn about the different functions of a newsroom position, and gain hands-on experience as a journalist before I even launched my career was amazing.
If you could go back in time and relive one moment from your time at Chapman, what would it be? Is there anything you would do differently?
I was lucky enough to be able to study abroad for a semester in Madrid, Spain during my freshman year. It was the most amazing experience of my life. I learned so much about myself, I was able to travel through countries I would never normally travel to, and I got to meet some of the most amazing people along the way. I wouldn’t change that for a second and I encourage everyone at Chapman to take advantage of the opportunity to study abroad.
What do you wish you had known when you graduated that you know now? What advice can you give to today’s students and/or recent graduates?
Enjoy every second. I wish I could go back and relive the late nights when I lay awake with friends working on projects, laughing, and trying to hone our skills. But also, the big thing I’ve learned is that everything happens as it should. There were so many different paths I could have taken after graduating, but I truly believe that the jobs I took took me to the right place. Don’t worry too much about which is the perfect job. It’s an adventure and you never know who you’ll meet along the way who can change your life and give you an opportunity that you wouldn’t have been given otherwise.
How did Chapman prepare you for your career? For life? How has your experience prepared you for the real world?
During my time at Chapman, I never really understood the impact my teachers had on shaping my career. However, they really had the biggest impact. They not only helped me start my career, but they pushed me to be passionate about my job.
Being able to learn from working, active journalists and filmmakers in the industry has given me insight that I don’t think many aspiring journalists receive. I have never been afraid to ask questions and I have never been afraid to fail in a project. Every project, every conversation, every conference was an opportunity to grow and learn from some of the best in the business. Thanks to their expertise, I gained experience in front of and behind the camera, sharpened my writing skills, and was able to network with professors and colleagues to land internships that students can only dream of. .
I recently returned to earn a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and realized how lucky Chapman students really were. Not all students receive the education we received and the opportunity to learn in such a hands-on environment. Chapman’s students, and more particularly the students of Dodge College of Film and Media Artsshould take advantage of all the opportunities available to them.
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