Monday, May 27, 2024

Alumni Spotlight with Beth Penney

Where and when were you born?

I was born August 7, 1994 in St. John’s, NL. 

What is your current job and list some things you like about it?

I work at NTV News in St. John’s as a reporter. There is so much I love about this job! I have always loved meeting new people; now I have an opportunity to meet new people every day. It’s very rewarding to know that I play a role in helping to inform people in the province about important issues and give a voice to those in need. Of course, my work colleagues are also something I love about my job. We all work well together – but also have a lot of laughs together. 

How does it relate to your diploma or certificate?

I graduated from CNA’s Journalism program in June 2018. My job at NTV News directly relates to the course materials and my diploma. For example, every day in the newsroom I edit my nightly segments on the same video editing software we used in the Kicker Newsroom at CNA. 

What is the hardest thing you’ve ever done in your lifetime?

One of the hardest things I’ve had to do in my lifetime, career-wise, would probably be making the decision to go back to school. I had been out of high school for six years, so I thought I might be a little older than most people taking the Journalism program. It was a challenge to decide that I wanted to pursue a career in Journalism rather than a career in teaching. It was tough, but it was the right decision. 

What’s your favourite place in the world?

I’ve had the opportunity to visit a lot of amazing places, including Dubai, The Bahamas, Hawaii … But Newfoundland and Labrador will always be my favourite place in the world. More specifically, Northern Bay in Conception Bay North. I spent a lot of summers with my family in Northern Bay, and my parents will soon be retiring there.  

Can you describe an experience that changed your life?

Through my last five years at NTV, I have had the privilege of interviewing a number of people that I believe have truly changed my life and perspective. I host a segment every Monday night called ‘Silver Linings.’ I have shared stories like a local beautician going to palliative care to paint a woman’s nails for free … to a young boy with brain cancer whose one wish was to meet his great-grandmother who lived in this province. These stories, and many more, have changed my outlook on life, and have made my love for Newfoundland and Labrador even stronger. 

What’s your favourite movie or book?

My favourite movie is probably The Sound Of Music. I am sure I have watched it close to 100 times in my 28 years. Lately, I have been drawn to fictional books, with a lot of good twists … so I’m going to have to say The Seven Husbands Of Evelyn Hugo is my favourite book I have read recently. 

Is your current career path as you originally intended?

No, it’s not. Throughout junior high and high school I had a lot of different plans for my future – none of those included Journalism or reporting. Initially a couple of years after high school I went to university, majoring in English with a minor in French, eventually hoping to go into teaching. But when CNA’s Journalism program moved into St. John’s from the west coast, I thought it was something I would enjoy … and I was right!

What challenges did you face in launching your career?

One of the biggest challenges I faced in the NTV News room was adjusting to daily deadlines. In school you get a little more time to work on projects, but in the TV news industry, the deadline comes hard and fast at the supper hour. 

What advice would you give to your CNA first-year self?

Trust your gut! You’re on the right path, and this first step will lead you to a rewarding and fulfilling career

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Ryanne McIsaac
Ryanne McIsaac
Ryanne is Editor of CNA Currents. Born and raised in Stephenville, NL, Ryanne moved back to Newfoundland after spending 16 years in Calgary, Alberta. Ryanne has a Journalism Diploma from College of the North Atlantic and a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Cape Breton University. She worked for many years as a reporter and freelance writer. She is happy to be back in her hometown and working for CNA.

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