There is less than one week until the 10th annual Dr. Lewis B. O’Donnell Media Summit, which will bring several top media professionals to Oswego State.
The annual event was created in 2005 after Louis A. Borrelli Jr., class of 1977, donated funds to hold the event. The event was renamed after the former professor in 2007, after additional funding from Al Roker, class of 1976. During the day a discussion will showcase four panelists and a moderator.
This year, the summit will be taking place on Oct. 16 with the panel being held at 2:30 p.m. The topic being discussed is the digital revolution and whether or not it is a blessing or a curse. The ceremony will be held at 2:30 p.m., but students are encouraged to come early, as they will need to be seated by 2:20 p.m.
Ken Auletta, class of 1963, will return as moderator after doing so in the inaugural summit. Auletta writes for The New Yorker magazine where he began contributing in 1977, according to the magazine’s website. He has also written 11 books, his most recent being titled “Googled: The End of the World As We Know It,” which was published in 2009.
Joining Auletta, panelists will be Dennis Thatcher, the president and treasurer of Mission Broadcasting, Inc.; Pulitzer Prize winning columnist Connie Schultz, who is a nationally syndicated writer for Creators Syndicate; Charlie Rose, who is the anchor and executive producer of his show named after him; and Roker, who is a 13-time Emmy Winner and a host and weatherman on NBC’s “Today.”
Work to organize the event has been going on for over a year now between organizing spaces and people, advertising the event and preparing questions and accommodations for the speakers on the panel.
Marissa Sarbak, student event coordinator for the summit, said there will be a lot discussed throughout the day, providing students with a plethora of information.
“Students should expect to leave with a greater knowledge and understanding of the topics discusses,” Sarbak said. “I think it’s great for students to see where these panelists are and to see where they started off; where we started off from writing in a national newspaper, to broadcasting live on the ‘Today’ show every morning and being known as America’s weatherman,”
“All the career connectors went to SUNY Oswego and it’s great for students to see Al Roker and Ken Auletta. It’s great to see what they can accomplish with a SUNY Oswego degree.”
In addition to being a panelist, Rose will be granted an honorary doctor of humane letters degree by SUNY. The ceremony will be held immediately prior to the summit.
According to the SUNY guidelines for awarding honorary degrees, in order to receive an honorary degree by SUNY, the recipient must be excellent in the field of degree that the recipient studied, which is a degree authorized by SUNY campuses. The recipient must also have offered outstanding service to humanity at large, have a life full of significant achievements that serve as an example to a “campus aspirations for its diverse student body” and elevate campuses where the recipient is “highly regarded for achievements in their respective fields of endeavor.”
Career connectors, professionals who all graduated from Oswego State, will be on hand and are back to speak with students about career, life and work after graduation. These connectors all graduated from Oswego State within the last five years, making them relatable resources.
The final event of the day is the “Tomorrow Show,” hosted by president Deborah F. Stanley and Steve Levy, ESPN journalist and graduate of Oswego State, class of 1987. The two will be anchoring the show and streaming it live on the oswego.edu home page. The show will highlight the best of Oswego, illustrating the knowledgeable students and faculty of Oswego State. It will also kick off a $40 million donation campaign.
“I think the media summit is a great thing for everyone to come to regardless of major,” Sarbak said. “With the caliber of alumni and professionals on campus, how would you miss out?”