Katie Coronado returned to her alma mater last year as an instructor to train future broadcast journalists in UCF’s Nicholson School of Communication while still moonlighting as a freelance journalist.
Coronado started her career as a bilingual reporter and producer for the Telemundo affiliate in Orlando. Since returning to UCF, she began Knightly Latino, a new segment of Knightly News, a weekly, student-run newscast. Knightly Latino focuses on the Latino community, both in English and Spanish, and returns this semester on Sept. 13.
(To view the Spanish webcasts, go to the Knightly Latino tab on Knightlynews.ucf.edu. Check out the website for other Knightly News daily broadcasts.)
What do you enjoy most about teaching at the Nicholson School of Communication?
I enjoy the opportunity to interact with the future of our industry, knowing that our faculty has the tools to pass along valuable insight to help our students become competitive when they graduate. It’s truly a very rewarding feeling.
What inspired you to leave broadcast news to teach?
After more than a decade in the industry, I decided to transition into teaching at UCF because it allows me to spend more time with my family while staying in the field that I love.
It may sound funny, but I really feel I haven’t left broadcast news. The way we run Knightly News, our capstone course, is so similar to what our industry newsrooms are like, that I still feel that much-needed adrenaline rush. Also, part of what I am able to do during my summer breaks is work as a freelancer. This past summer, I covered the Zimmerman trial with WFTV’s Spanish-language station Mega TV. It’s a great balance!
What do you feel are the most important qualities to succeed as a bilingual broadcaster?
I feel that being and remaining humble is something most students need to remember from the start. The industry is so fast-paced that it’s easy to forget that—whether you’re bilingual or not.
Bilingual broadcasters, in particular, should practice speaking “neutral” Spanish and English.
Speaking neutral in either language is a skill that can be learned but it requires a great deal of practice. For example, when writing a story, it should use language that is common to Latinos from all backgrounds, those originally from South America and from the Caribbean. I also think that being bilingual usually means you have different perspectives about stories. Knowing how to bring that into a newsroom without bias is important.
What can we expect to see from Knightly Latino this semester?
This semester we can expect to see several new faces on the webcast.
We have several reporters and anchors that will contribute to the Spanish product. The team of reporters represents the diverse community of Central Florida. Their backgrounds are Puerto Rican, Colombian, Venezuelan and Mexican, just to name a few.
Our talented executive producer, student Laurent Gonzalez, is ready to put the skills she’s learned here at NSC as well as in her native Colombia to lead the Knightly Latino news team.
Also, the end-of-the-year show in Spanish will be available for our UCF community.
What do you feel is a common misconception of journalists?
I feel a common misconception of journalists is that all broadcast journalists are superficial and mostly worry about looking pretty. Yes, those personalities exist in any field. However, having worked the nation’s first converged newsroom, “The News Center” in Tampa, I can tell you that both print and broadcast journalists who do their job right are all after the same goal, reporting the truth and writing and delivering a balanced story.
What is something that few people know about you?
I love the movie Grease, and Celia Cruz music makes me happy!
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I see myself being an educator who’s recognized for contributing to our program at NSC while working in the field. In addition, I’d like to continue to carve the way for bilingual journalists and media professionals who attend UCF.