Since the beginning of 2021, four Klein College of Media and Communication alumni have started new jobs in their fields. From TikTok, to magazines, to digital news; each alumnus is finding their place and chasing incredible opportunities. Though each found their niche in the media and communication industry, each one mentioned that they draw their roots back to their time at Temple University. Keep reading to find out what these hard-working individuals have been up to.
Lawrence Watling, KLN '15 (he/him)
Industry Education Strategist | TikTok
Since graduating from Temple with a degree in media studies and production in 2015, Lawrence Watling has explored several aspects of media. Most recently, he began a job as an industry education strategist on the global brand strategy team at social media phenomenon TikTok. In this position, Watling educates businesses on how to use TikTok to drive their business and is building a curriculum for TikTok Academy, a hub for everything businesses need to know to break onto the TikTok scene.
"I'm not surprised that if there's a new medium that comes out, he learns about it," said Managing Director of Student Media John DiCarlo, who has worked with many alumni through various student media outlets.
Watling's path to where he is, he says, was not "linear." While at Temple, he interned at Q102 and then landed a job as an on-air radio host at 96.5 TDY after graduating. While at 96.5, he also worked in executive education at the Wharton School of Business at University of Pennsylvania. Watling eventually decided to leave radio and briefly worked in international marketing at Atlantic Records before becoming the chief operating officer at artist development company Taste Creators.
"Temple provided me with a crazy opportunity to get in quickly," Watling said of his early start at Temple's radio station, WHIP, during his freshman year. His Temple experience taught him that he didn't need to change the speed of his growth due to a lack of opportunities, and that he can always seek new ones.
Francesca Furey, KLN '20 (she/her)
Associate Editor | Hudson Valley Magazine
Francesca Furey graduated from Temple with degrees in journalism and history in 2020. Despite her internships and the qualifications she received while at Temple, the job she had lined up after graduation fell through due to the pandemic. Furey persisted, though, and freelanced until December 2020. At that time, Furey saw on LinkedIn that Hudson Valley Magazine, the local magazine in her hometown of Rockland County, New York, where she had interned in college was looking for an editorial assistant. She applied and started in January.
Shortly after, however, an associate editor position opened up at the magazine. Furey, not expecting to get it because of her young age and relative lack of experience, decided she would still throw her hat in the ring. Her risk was worth it - she got the position, and now oversees the entire food and drink section of the magazine. She is happy to be back in her hometown and is even happier that she gets to explore it from a journalistic perspective.
Furey is grateful to have explored her craft while still in college as editor-in-chief of REFINE Magazine and chief copy editor at The Temple News. "With my editing opportunities at Temple, I understood that sometimes team work really does make the dream work," she wrote.
DiCarlo noted Furey's impressive ability to balance her two editing positions and still be a pleasure to be around. "She was always just one of my favorite people to talk to in the office," he said. "She had the ability to really keep people laughing."
Tom Ignudo, KLN '18 (he/him)
Digital Content Producer | CBS Philly
Another former journalism student, Tom Ignudo, started a new job as a digital content producer at CBS Philly in June 2021. At the station, Ignudo works early hours uploading content, cutting videos and packages, and occasionally writing about sports. Sports journalism is where Ignudo's passions were for a long time, but he is grateful to be branching out.
"It's a wonderful thing when students can combine a talent and a work ethic, and they're a great person on top of it," DiCarlo said. "He really deeply cares about every single story he writes."
Ignudo has experience covering high school and college sports. In 2016, he interned at Philadelphia Sports Digest where he mostly covered high school football with some college sports thrown in. In 2017, he interned at CSN Comcast Sports Net, now NBC Sports Philadelphia, and covered Temple basketball as well as some of Philadelphia's professional teams such as the 76ers, Flyers and Phillies. In 2018, Ignudo worked at and eventually ran the sports service desk at the Philadelphia Inquirer and covered all the scores of the high school sports in the area.
As a transfer student at Temple, before he got to campus, many people told Ignudo to get involved with The Temple News. Heeding their advice, he did and eventually became the assistant sports editor.
"It's an experience like no other and I wouldn't change anything about it," Ignudo said. "If you really want to get into journalism, especially in print, you go right to The Temple News."
Colin Evans, KLN '21 (he/him)
Data Journalist | LancasterOnline
One of our more recent Temple alumni — and one of the most recent to start his new professional chapter — is former journalism and economics major Colin Evans. At the end of August 2021, Evans started working as a data journalist at LancasterOnline where he previously interned as a general assignment reporter. As a data journalist, Evans's job is to help the newsroom expand their reporting to include more data-focused stories. This includes writing his own stories, pitching ideas and lending lots of support to other journalists. Although he is not on a specific beat, Evans often passes his ideas off to other colleagues and collaborates with them on finding the best ways to illustrate the data in their stories.
In the short time between his graduation from Temple and his start at LancasterOnline, Evans interned for Temple-based organization News Catalyst, which helps newsrooms with their goals and capabilities.
While still in college, Evans explored the field of data journalism through his internship at Data Desk where he helped newsrooms retrieve data sets. Evans was also involved with The Temple News during his time at Temple and, as he puts it, the paper was his "full-time job." In his first year, his sophomore year, Evans worked on news reporting before getting involved with news editing his junior year and finally becoming the digital managing editor his senior year.
"He just really enjoys the craft of being a reporter and being a writer," DiCarlo said. He said that Evans used to read his colleagues' stories in detail and always helped raise morale in The Temple News community.
Evans is glad that his "full-time job" at The Temple News pushed him to be the best journalist he could be. "The Temple News was my best preparation for this job, and I feel very confident in my own ability to report the news and to do so ethically and responsibly and accurately," he said.
DiCarlo is proud of all four alumni and feels lucky to have worked with them. "All of them; Lawrence, Francesca, Tom and Colin, they were really great leaders for us," he said.