From bombings to floods to polyandry, Bharati Naik, a field producer for CNN International in London now covers a wide array of stories in her career, but the real story is how she got from Texas State to CNN.
Before working at CNN, Naik had her humble beginnings at Texas State when she received her second M.A. in the Journalism department. Prior she went to school for her B.A. in computer applications and her first M.A. in information technology.
“I had been thinking about journalism for a long time, but I come from a pretty traditional Indian family, which means, my parents were really adamant that I follow either computer science or do medicine or something like that,” Naik said.
Towards the end of her time at Texas State, Naik realized she needed experience outside of her time spent at the University Star and the university channel. Naik began applying for internships.
“I got so many rejections before I got my internship at CNN. I applied for about 60 or 70 internships and I had not be accepted for them…” Naik said. “It is a tough job market, but that is for every other [job market] too.”
After her internship with Anderson Cooper she did not have a job lined up. Instead of coming back to Texas, Naik decided that she wanted to stay in New York. She lived in an apartment with three other people and got a part-time secretary job at CNN.
“She just told every reporter ‘Let me know if you want me to go with you, I’ll just carry the camera or anything.’ So she really just followed people around,” said Dr. Susan Weill, a professor at Texas State.
Naik worked her way to being a field producer in India where she was during the 2008 bombings in Mumbai. Naik liked being a field reporter in India, but she likes her job better now because she gets to spend time in the field and in the office.
Her biggest recommendation to students at Texas State is to use all the resources you have at hand, use your courses, your professors, and tools that the university offers to you.
“Make sure you get the experience even in courses, shadow for a week at a news channel, you have to show persistence,” Naik said.
For more from the Skype session, check out my Storify for the live tweets from my event.