Newsmaker: Kendall Valan
Noteworthy: The Entertainment Industries Council selected Valan's video story “Student Suicide Aftermath: Who's Responsible?” as the winner in the Journalism category of its Generation Next competition. The competition for Western Pennsylvania college students is meant to encourage reporting on mental health issues. Valan chose the subject after seeing the effects a suicide had on the community of a small Philadelphia college her brother attends. The competition provides tools to aspiring journalists and, in Valan's case, connected her with a producer at WQED who served as a mentor and helped Valan refine her focus for the five-minute video story.
Education: Valan is a junior at Robert Morris University, where she majors in television and video production.
Quote: “It made me stop and think about how the conversation (about campus suicides) wasn't happening at Robert Morris and that maybe there should be some questions answered on the issue. ... I learned a lot from the experience, and learned there actually are a lot of resources at Robert Morris. This conversation needs to happen, and I think this is a great step.”