"I think I speak for both Bella and I that this is kind of an unbelievable experience and there are some days where I don't really think about how fortunate we are," Sam Cohn (he/him) said. "It's cool to take a step back and think about how far the two of us have come."
Over the summer of 2021, Cohn and Bella DiAmore (she/her) were approached by Managing Editor for Sports at The Philadelphia Inquirer Michael Huang about a vision he had for athletics at the City 6 schools. What's more, part of his vision was for these athletic programs to be covered in The Inquirer by students at each school. With the help of Managing Director of Student Media John DiCarlo, KLN '98 '06 (he/him), and Dean of Klein College of Media and Communication David Boardman, Cohn and DiAmore became the guinea pigs for Huang's idea.
Since then, the senior journalism majors have been working tirelessly on a freelance basis toward individualized and well-rounded coverage of Temple Athletics for The Inquirer. Because The Inquirer also covers Philadelphia professional sports, Cohn and DiAmore have the unique task of drawing attention toward college sports.
A typical week for the pair has them doing gameday coverage of football or basketball, writing a midweek football story and a story about an Olympic sport other than football or basketball. DiAmore loves that she gets to bring attention to sports that often get less coverage. "There's a lot to say so it's cool that we get to do that through that outlet," she said of her work for The Inquirer.
"This opportunity means the world to them. They were so excited about it," DiCarlo said. Cohn and DiAmore weren't the only ones excited, though. Their close friend and General Manager at WHIP, Temple University's radio station, Ray Dunne (he/him) was "over the moon" for them when they got the opportunity.
"They're some of the most talented people I know," Dunne said. "Bella and Sam embody the best of what you would want in student media."
Cohn and DiAmore met during their freshman year and have had several classes together throughout their academic journey. Their extracurricular activities, however, diverged early on in their time at Temple.
When they met, DiAmore was very impressed with how involved Cohn already was in WHIP. When Cohn got to WHIP, he immediately wanted to start a podcast department at the station. Though he has a particular interest in sports, he wanted the department to be diverse in the topics it covers. The show he hosted, The Cherry Tribune, covered Temple athletics as a whole and was a finalist for an intercollegiate broadcasting system award.
Cohn took his podcasting work to OwlScoop where he now co-hosts and produces The Scoop. He also does written coverage of Temple football and basketball for the site. "You root for people like Sam Cohn to succeed because beyond just the talent and how hard he works every day, he's just genuine to everyone," Dunne said.
Currently, Cohn is just involved in the sports department at WHIP in general and does one show per week.
While Cohn's path led him to radio, DiAmore's led her to print. After a year as the assistant sports editor at The Temple News, DiAmore is now the sports editor. In this role, she does more editing and designing than she does writing. "That's a learning experience in itself," she said. "Just taking yourself away from the writing and just focusing on the editing side."
At The Temple News, DiAmore sees an overlap between what her team is covering and what she and Cohn are covering for The Inquirer. It's always interesting, she says, to see the different ways the same story can be covered in two different publications, and likes that her work for the Inquirer gives her a larger knowledge-base that she can bring to The Temple News.
"She's got an insane work ethic and I trust her immeasurably to put in a great effort with every single thing she does," DiCarlo said. "She really cares about helping people get better."
Both Cohn and DiAmore are grateful that their paths are finally converging again as they collaborate at The Inquirer. "It was exciting to know that you're working with someone that you know," Cohn said of his transition to working with DiAmore at The Inquirer.
While Cohn and DiAmore both hope they can stay at The Inquirer after they graduate in May 2021, should it not be possible, they know what they want their futures to look like. Cohn's dream is to be a beat writer and reporter for an NBA team or for basketball in general, and DiAmore would love to work on a beat for a professional team doing social interest stories on athletes.
"They're both awesome. We're super lucky to have them. They both have really bright futures ahead of them," DiCarlo said.