Learning the Art of the Pitch – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Learning the Art of the Pitch

Sarah Pierce ‘10 is currently interning in the Public Relations Department at the CBS-TV Broadcast Center, in New York City. Her daily responsibilities include press clipping, writing Public Service Announcements (PSAs), screening other PSA’s the station has received, updating the community calendar with events within the five boroughs, and writing talent pitches. Pierce has also learned how to use various computer programs such as INews.

“PSAs are a large part of what I do at CBS,” explains Pierce, “We receive many each day, which I screen and decide if they fit the credentials to air on CBS.  Along with screening PSAs, I also write my own for events that CBS sponsors, such as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Annual Walk, or the Komen Fund Race for A Cure (for breast cancer awareness).”

Some days, Pierce’s work takes her outside the office, when she works onsite where PSAs are being filmed. Last month, she went to the Plaza Hotel to assist at the shoot for the Komen Fund for a Cure. “The commercial featured all the female anchors and reporters at CBS, wearing pink, encouraging everyone to go out and register for the Komen Race for a Cure walk/run,” she explains. “It was great to see the commercial air and see the finished product.” 

Pierce also attended a shoot in Central Park for “Summer Streets,” an event that takes place over the course of three Saturdays in August; the City’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg closes down Park Avenue to traffic so New Yorkers can enjoy the outdoors car-free. 

A major part of Pierce’s internship at CBS includes participating in creating a summer intern newscast. This project includes all the interns at CBS this summer who are in different departments. The interns come together and make a “mock” newscast about their experiences at CBS. They tackle all related jobs, from anchors to executive producers, working the camera to writing, editing and reporting. Pierce will be working on writing and editing the piece about the PR department.

An economics major with an American studies minor, Pierce studied in Central Europe last fall. With a liberal arts education Peirce explains, “It is easy to get interested in departments other than your major. Interning in PR for CBS doesn’t exactly coincide with my major and minor but I find it very rewarding to experience new things.” 

In the photo above: William Smith students Sarah Pierce ’10, Katie Mullen ’10, Sarah Hallberg ’10, Katie Pietrak ’10, and Sarah Dilworth ’10 (l to r) pause for a photo op with New York City’s “Real Housewife” and reality television star, the Countess LuAnn de Lesseps.