MPS Journalism Alum of the Month - October 2012
Kate Chapek (@katechapek)
"Be bold. Be courageous. Be honest. Be you. And above all, know your worth."
With the 2012 U.S. Presidential campaign in full swing, we are featuring Kate Chapek, the National Women Vote Director of Obama’s campaign, as our Alum of the Month for October. Kate graduated from the MPS Journalism program in 2009 and lives in Chicago, IL, where she works to engage women voters and activists to re-elect President Obama. Prior to attending Georgetown, Kate worked as a Regional Coordinator for EMILY’s List and also worked for a few Democratic campaigns. Kate shared with us how she implements what she learned from the MPS Journalism program in her current job.
1. How has your MPS Journalism degree helped you in your current job?
“I use my journalism degree every day. As the National Women Vote Director, my job is to figure out how to best engage women of all constituencies, educating them on the President’s record, persuading them to support him, and turning them out to vote. In order to do this, I am constantly writing plans and recommendations both nationally and by state. As a result much of the audience engagement I do deals with strategic messaging and amplification through media; earned, paid, and of course - new media! I work with our press team, pitching stories and also engage with reporters as I trained to be one and know how they think. Everyday I write, edit, pitch, frame and disseminate messaging.”
2. How did you hear about this program, and why did you choose to come here?
“I earned my BA in Journalism and was looking to for a program that would enhance and update my passion for sharing people’s stories through many different platforms as well as complement my career in electoral politics. Georgetown’s MPS Journalism program was the perfect hybrid and fit for me.”
3. What is your favorite journalism movie?
“This probably doesn’t count - but my own! For my capstone, I wrote, produced, shot and edited a 14 minute short film that took me 300 hours to complete. My documentary was about the DC Central Kitchen and their culinary training program which trains the unemployed, underemployed, previously incarcerated, previously drug addicted, and homeless adults for careers in the food service industry. It was as political as it was personal and I earned two awards at the Georgetown Film Festival. They now sit on my mantle.”
4. Who is your favorite working journalist?
“You! I love keeping up with my classmates as knowing where we started and seeing where so many of us are now is truly inspiring. I know that many of my classmates are on their way to running major newspapers, broadcast affiliates and online publications.”
5. What one piece of advice would you give current students?
“Be bold. Be courageous. Be honest. Be you. And above all, know your worth.”