Blog Post 2

The person I will be interviewing is Lewis Clark, Jr., MPA, VP/Marketing, Corporate Communication, Digital Media at Vero Beach Medical Center. Mr. Clark attended the University of Florida earning a degree in Public Relations. He then attended Georgia Southern University and received his MA in Public Administration. Vero is a leading hospital and medical institute in Florida. I chose Mr. Clark because of my interest in working marketing in the medical field as well as my relationship from working with him as an intern this past summer.

I want to understand how Mr. Clark views his profession especially pertaining to communication and listening. Communication was such an important part of the job this summer. Not only to patients but between co workers and departments. I noticed how the public relations and marketing department had to have an understanding and communication with many different people around the hospital to accurately communicate with patients and people they were trying to reach. Mr. Clark talks about how marketing for a hospital gets complicated because you can’t sell someone “health” like you can sell a car. This is something I want to understand more clearly so when I start my professional career I can be an effective communicator.

Blog #2

The professional I am planning on interviewing is Veterinarian Dr. Cynthia Thomas. Dr. Thomas graduated from The University of Florida getting a degree in Veterinary Medicine in 1986. Dr. Thomas currently works at Shaffer Animal Hospital in Oviedo and has two dogs of her own. Dr. Thomas’s daughters both attended Rollins and played on the women’s lacrosse team.

I am interested in interviewing Dr. Thomas because Vets, I believe, are part of the helping profession even though they are not technically helping humans. In a way I believe that listening could be even more important to a vet because the animals themselves cannot speak to us. This makes communications between the pet owner and the vet critical. It may in fact be more so “listening” than hearing that is important. I think that it will be very interesting to find out just how much listening impacts a vet, and they actually find themselves listening more than anything because with patients who cannot actually talk you have to be more in tune to other things that are going on. I also chose to interview Dr. Thomas because when I was younger I had an interest in becoming a vet, while that is no longer the current path I am taking, I am still interested in what it takes to be a vet.

Blog Post 1- Interview Questions

The best way to start of an interview is just general introductions of the person I am interviewing as well as introducing myself. Then I would start with a broad opening question such as:

  1. Tell me a little about your profession, and some background information. What does a typical day look like for someone in this profession?

This is great question to get things going. It allows both of us to get comfortable with each other, which can set the stage for some more in depth questions to come. It allows gives me a jumping off point and lead to further questions later in the interview because I will have some background knowledge on the profession

A second question I would ask in the interview would be:

  1. Were there any life events or moments that you head that lead to you the profession that you are in today?

By asking this question I get to know the person for more than just their profession. I get to learn about what inspires them and what leads people to pick the jobs that they have. I think it will be interesting to learn how certain moments in people’s lives can shape the person they grow up, and how those events or moments and push them in the direction they are now going. I believe that one moment can have a big impact on your life and I am interested to see if others believe that as well.

Another question I would ask:

  1. What would you say the greatest challenge of your profession is?

This allows me to get little more personal with the person that I am interviewing and some really “raw” answers. Everyone sees different things as more challenging than others so this is a question that really can let you understand a person, and make the interview about, and not so much just about person in that line of work. You are asking for THEIR opinion, not a general opinion of people in that field.

To move on from that and switch gears I would as a question such as:

  1. What is your favorite part of your profession/job. What makes your job worth doing?

Again with question I am keeping it pretty personal. I want answers that are genuine and if you ask people for their own thoughts, and their own likes I feel you are likely to get a genuine answer that also could apply to others who would want to work in that profession, so it serves a dual purpose. Plus, I’m hoping with a question like this I will get an answer that strikes a chord, and could inspire someone listening to the interview.

Finally, to finish I would ask:

  1. If you could tell one thing to people trying to get into your profession what you tell them?

I think this is a great place to leave off. Some words of wisdom to send people off with to hopefully get them motivated and inspired.

Blog Post #1

  1. What inspired your profession of choice?
    1. Provides understanding
      1. By asking this question, the interviewer gains an understanding of the interviewee. It provides background knowledge of why this person is passionate in a specific field. You’re able to connect more in-depth when you understand where a person comes from and knowing situations that have impacted their aspirations.
  2. Do you see yourself here in 10 years?
    1. Figure out if they are happy at this level
      1. This question allows the interviewer to figure out whether or not a person is satisfied with where they are presently. Individuals often encounter many shifts in passions, which then triggers a shift in professions.
  3. What motivates you to work?
    1. Discover if there is something that pushes them to work each day… self-motivation, family, etc.
      1. Some are self-motivated when they go to work. Some people work to make a living. Some are motivated to prove a point to others. And some are motivated by a loved one. They may have to pay for their child(ren)’s school tuition, medical bills, etc. These motivations push individuals to strive each day. By asking this question, you discover what values a person possess.
  4. What is your most memorable experience at your job?
    1. What excites them about their job…
      1. This question usually would have a very passionate response. People enjoy sharing experiences that have left imprints on their lives. Whether or not the experience was negative or positive, it was memorable. It shows what situations attracts their attention.
  5. Would you consider yourself positioned in your career or employed at a job?
    1. Move up the ladder or change completely…
      1. This question, although similar to the second question, can receive a different response. An individual may not be happy with the position they have. However, they may enjoy the field and plan to either be promoted or move up the ladder through other methods. Other methods may include entrepreneurship or obtaining a higher position by changing companies. This question allows you to understand where they feel they may be in their life.
  6. How would you define active listening?
      1. You’re able to understand their perspectives on listening and what they perceive to be active/effective listening.
  7. How has listening enhanced your conflict-handling skills?
      1. This question asks of their knowledge of listening and communication and shows how they apply it to their everyday life.
  8. What is your favorite animal?
    1. Insight of who they see themselves as
      1. When a person chooses their favorite animal, the features are usually relatable to their own mannerism. This will enlighten the interviewer what type of person they may be. Although it is an enlightening question, it is also a fun question that ceases the tension of a professional interview.

Reflections on [True] Stories and COM 230: Listening

This semester my COM 230: Listening class had the opportunity to participate in [True] Stories, a project focused on the importance of teaching oral history in the College classroom. We started the semester with readings (e.g., Wolvin, 2010; Rubin & Rubin, 2012) and discussions about the value of qualitative interviewing for learning, understanding, and sharing experiences. Students were asked to interview a professional from the community to learn more about the importance of listening in the field they are interested in joining after graduation.

In their first assignment, students submitted a brief reflection describing the person they planned to interview, draft of interview questions, and your rationale for asking those questions. Students learned about the ethics of qualitative research. I explained the role of the Institutional Review Board when conducting research and described the process that resulted in approval of the project from the IRB at Rollins College. We had each interviewee complete an informed consent form describing the purpose of the project before the interview.

After the students completed individual interviews with professionals in our community, students audio record responses to a set of prescribed questions and prepared a typed transcript of the most important segments of the interview. Then, in small groups, the students coded/analyzed the interviews for themes.

One of the biggest “aha” moments came after Leslie Poole, Assistant Professor in the Department of Environmental Studies, gave a talk on her experiences with oral history as a journalist. Students were able to compare their experiences doing oral history with a professional’s experiences which added to their learning.

Students also reflected on the role of listening in oral history and wrote a paper that included information drawn from what they had learned in class (through readings, lectures, and discussions) and their individual research to discuss how the scholarly research relates to or contradicts what the students learned from professionals through the interviews.

This was a full semester project. However, in the future, I plan to have the students complete the assignment in a shorter period of time. I believe that starting the project at the mid-point of the semester and including guest lectures earlier in the semester will help students better integrate the material learned in class with their project.

Oral History, Copyright, and Beyond: A Conversation with Dr. Jonathan Miller

We are happy to invite you to another [True] Stories speaker event:

JMimageOral History, Copyright, and Beyond: A Conversation with Dr. Jonathan Miller of Rollins College

Time:  Tuesday, April 19, 2016 10:00am EST/ 9:00am CT

Rollins College’s Library Director, Dr. Jonathan Miller, will lead us in a conversation about copyright as well as other ethical and practical considerations involved with oral history work.

Dr. Miller earned his PhD from the University of Pittsburgh in 2009 and wrote his dissertation on the role of librarians and libraries in the development of copyright law. His research and writing interests also include copyright history, open access publishing, and library management. In addition to his many publications, awards, and accomplishments, Dr. Miller is active in the Association of College & Research Libraries where he enjoys engaging in advocacy and government relations work. You can view Dr. Miller’s CV online here and a selection of his recent publications here.

Please join us and bring your questions! This event will also be recorded and an edited copy will be available afterwards on the [True] Stories website.

Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android:

Or iPhone one-tap:  16465588656,317692836# or 14086380968,317692836#

Or Telephone:

Dial: +1 646 558 8656 (US Toll) or +1 408 638 0968 (US Toll)

Meeting ID: 317 692 836

International numbers available:

“In Conversation: The Zora Neale Hurston I Remember”

In a recording from just a few weeks back at the 27th Zora Neale Hurston Festival of the Arts in Winter Park, Florida, Zora’s friends and relatives offer amazingly personal stories about the time they spent with the talented writer and folklorist who called Eatonville her home.

Sights, sounds, and smells play a critical part in their recollections as they recount what it was like to visit Hurston and her home. In one heartfelt comment, Mrs. Ella Johnson Dinkins (daughter of Hurston’s Eatonville friend, Addie G. Johnson), remembered Zora’s affection for her and the other children of Eatonville even after many years of notoriety and success – “Zora comforted us as children […] She came to us as a mother would, […] she would always cover us, [and] love us children, because that was just her way.”

[This video recording was provided by the organizer of the 27th Annual Zora Neale Hurston Festival of the Arts and Humanities — The Association to Preserve the Eatonville Community, Inc. (P.E.C.) — and supported by the [True] Stories grant as well as Rollins College.]

“In Conversation: The Zora Neale Hurston I Remember”

Rollins College Archives and Special Collections was honored to be a sponsor of the 27th Zora Neale Hurston Festival of the Arts in Winter Park, Florida!

Stay tuned for a special  recording of “In Conversation: The Zora Neale Hurston I Remember”: An Interview with Mrs. Ella Johnson Dinkins (daughter of Hurston’s Eatonville friend, Addie G. Johnson), Dr. Clifford Hurston Jr. (Hurston’s Nephew), and Mrs.Vivian Hurston Bowden (Hurston’s Niece). The conversation, led by Dr. Ben Brotemarkle of the Florida Historical Society, enjoyed a a large and captive audience.