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Meet the Student Newsroom Team

 

Farrah Anderson

 Senior Producer


Farrah, a sophomore journalism major from Danville, Illinois, holds multiple positions at IPM. In addition to serving as a mentor and producer to newer reporters in the student newsroom, she also serves as producer of the daily IPM podcast, 217 Today. She was among the first cohort of the student newsroom, starting with coverage of the 2020 election. Her work for IPM has won both local and national awards, including first place in the student spot news category of the Illinois News Broadcasters Association’s 2021 awards and recognition as one of the top 25 pieces of student journalism in the nation as determined by the Hearst Journalism Awards Program.

 

Vivian La

 Senior Producer


Vivian, a sophomore journalism major, serves as one of two senior producers in the student newsroom, a position in which she trains and mentors other students in their work. Part of the inaugural class of IPM student reporters, Vivian has covered issues ranging from COVID-19 to national elections to long haulers to a rise in anti-Asian racism. She is an assistant daytime editor at The Daily Illini, the student-run campus newspaper, and a member of the Asian American Journalists Association.

 

Mona Alrazzaq

Mona Alrazzaq

 Reporter


Mona is a senior journalism major from Orland Park, Illinois. She joined the Illinois Student Newsroom in 2021. Outside of the newsroom, she serves as the assistant news editor for the Daily Illini, the student-run newspaper at the University of Illinois, and as a managing editor for the law review club on campus. Following her time at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, she plans on attending law school.

 

Haley Bickelhaupt

Haley Bickelhaupt

 Reporter


Haley, a junior studying agricultural communications with a concentration in journalism, joined the Illinois Student Newsroom in 2021. She is involved in the College of ACES Student Advancement Committee, and National and Illinois Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow Officer and a member of 4-H House Cooperative Sorority. She aspires to combine her love for people, agriculture, policy and journalism following graduation.

 

Carolina Garibay

Carolina Garibay

 Senior Reporter


Carolina is a senior journalism major from the northwest side of Chicago. She joined the Illinois Student Newsroom in the fall of 2021 after having a few of her stories air on WILL in the spring. In her stories for WILL, she’s covered arts and culture, education, and social justice issues affecting local communities. During the summer of 2021, she served as the 217 Today Podcast production intern at IPM, where she produced and occasionally hosted episodes. Carolina is also the current buzz, or arts and culture, editor at The Daily Illini, the University’s student-run newspaper. She also hosts a weekly arts and entertainment talk show on WPGU 107.1 with fellow buzz staff members.

 

Charrice Jones

Charrice Jones

 Senior Reporter


Charrice is a senior journalism major from Chicago. She began working for the newsroom after a story of hers aired about the effects of the pandemic on parents and their young children. She was previously a reporter for the Illini Yearbook in 2018 covering student life and events. She aspires to obtain a job in newsroom production after graduation.

 

Justin Malone

Justin Malone

 Reporter


Justin, a junior in journalism and political science, joined the Illinois Student Newsroom in 2021. In his work at Illinois Public Media, he has covered local government, social issues, and university affairs. Justin is an avid photographer and has worked in broadcasting and journalism since he was 15. Beyond the student newsroom, his work can be found in many places around Champaign-Urbana. He serves as the inaugural news director at WPGU and as a staff writer for Smile Politely.

 

Gwyn Skiles

Gwyn Skiles

 Senior Reporter


Gwyn, a sophomore journalism major from Glenview, Illinois, began in the student newsroom as part of the inaugural class, covering election day of 2020, when she and her fellow staff members spread across the regions to talk to voters from Danville to Decatur. She, currently the features editor for The Daily Illini, the university’s independent student newspaper, aspires to be a professional journalist who serves as a voice for the people

 

Olivia

Olivia Vamos

 Reporter


Olivia is a sophomore journalism major pursuing a dual degree in viola. She has contributed journalism work on the Illinois Public Media 217 Today podcast, covering topics such as The Durga Puja Festival in Urbana and Amnesty Week. She is a staff writer for The Daily Illini and the vice-president of the university chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. Vamos is interested in pursuing a career in broadcast journalism or communications.

 

Chris Evans

Chris Evans

 Director, Illinois Student Newsroom at IPM


Chris created the student newsroom in 2020 as part of a collaboration between Illinois Public Media and the University of Illinois College of Media, where he teaches multimedia journalism. From the start, the goal of the initiative has been to help U of I students learn from IPM’s professional journalists and to produce audio news segments as polished as any others that listeners might hear on National Public Radio.

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