Faculty Roundtable: Journalistic Inquiries

If you were a journalist, what would your beat be and why?

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Faculty Roundtable: Journalistic Inquiries

If you were a journalist, what would your beat be and why?

Headshot of Vaughna Galvin

Vaughna Galvin
Assistant Professor of Professional Practice in Nurse Anesthesia 
Harris College of Nursing & Health Sciences

My beat would be applied anatomy and physiology — the art of the science. Neuroscience explains that thinking requires memories, and I love engaging students with the information they’ll use in their clinical practice.

Headshot of Brandon Manning

Brandon Manning
Assistant Professor of Black Literature and Culture
School of Interdisciplinary Studies and AddRan College of Liberal Arts

I would want my beat to be local politics — school board, zoning meetings, county commissioners, etc. My mother was on the school board in Dekalb County, a metropolitan-area board near Atlanta, Georgia. Unfortunately, local politics don’t get the proper coverage, and they oftentimes have the greatest day-to-day impact on our lives. I would want to make sure the people who weren’t able to attend these meetings knew what was happening in their communities.   

Headshot of Samir NangiaSamir Nangia
Assistant Professor of Nephrology
TCU and UNTHSC School of Medicine

I would focus on preventive medicine! I believe we need more resources to continue to educate the community on health. My passion for this can be shown with our radio show, Doc Talk Live (, which I have been doing for the last six years. 

The other area of health care I would focus on would be mental health. I believe this is another area of medicine that suffers in the United States and even more around the globe. Through my role of being a physician development coach and a practicing nephrologist in the community, I have a deep insight into the growing need of access to mental health care. As a journalist, I would cover stories of how to improve mental health as well as what are some innovative tools/resources to keep your wellness score high.

Headshot of Charity RobinsonCharity Robinson
Instructor of Film, Television and Digital Media
Bob Schieffer College of Communication

I have a deep love for musical theater and the performing arts. I originally went to school to study music as a vocal performance major before changing to mass communication. If I were to have a beat, I’d love to cover arts and culture!


Headshot of Jesus Castro-BalbiJesús Castro-Balbi
Professor of Cello
College of Fine Arts

If I were a journalist, I’d travel around the world to document the stories of people and places I only know by name. I’d take a few friends along, so that the learnings and the journey would be fabulous.

Headshot of Paul IrvinePaul Irvine

Professor of Finance
Neeley School of Business

Politics? No, I think that the venal mediocrity of most politicians would embitter one after a time. Athletics? No, the self-absorption of the professional athlete would be frustrating.

I would choose the markets. Something new every day. You can always figure out more, but never figure out everything. And when you get it right, Mr. Market lets you know. 

Headshot of Kathleen KyzarKathleen Kyzar
Associate Professor of Early Childhood Education
College of Education

My beat would be education to expose systemic barriers and bring attention to research and resources that are needed to ensure meaningful teaching and learning experiences across the spectrum of early childhood to post-secondary.

Headshot of Wendi Sierra

Wendi Sierra
Assistant Professor of Games Studies
John V. Roach Honors College

As a games scholar, I’m sure if I had a journalistic beat it would be covering video games. I’m particularly interested in how narratives and stories work in games, so I would love to cover role-playing games and horror games. Along the way, I could introduce people to some important narrative design concepts and how they work in these different games — how, for example, games with fairly linear narratives still give players the impression of choice and agency! (“Skyrim,” I’m looking at you.)

I also really value the work of indie creators, who are often able to tackle subjects or experiment with mechanics that high-budget games rarely explore. As a games journalist, I would enjoy the opportunity to share some fantastic but less widely known games with a larger audience. 

Headshot of Michael ChumleyMichael Chumley
Professor of Biology
College of Science & Engineering

I would focus my reporting on biomedical research. The general public seems to perpetuate misconceptions associated with research, which is exacerbated by any armchair scientist/doctor/other on social media. The current pandemic and the misconceptions associated with vaccinations are two prominent examples. People need simplified explanations of important biomedical issues, scientific breakthroughs and the dedication of the front-line researchers who find 10,000 ways that won’t work in their research before they ever make that breakthrough. 

SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS: If you were a journalist, what would your beat be? Leave a comment below.