Thinking I would arrive perfectly on time at the conference on Day 3, I was clearly wrong. As I approached the front gate of Trinity College, it was undergoing construction so I had to run to the gate on Nassau Street. Yes I know it isn't exactly that far away from the front gate, however, I precisely calculate the number of minutes required to walk from my house to get to college. Thankfully, when I arrived at the Exam Hall (where the plenary session was to take place) everyone was just mingling and getting to know new people.
Elie Wiesel welcomed us with a short speech and then passed it on to.....
Michael D. Higgins, the President of Ireland gave his speech about the importance of ethical young leaders today in the future of tomorrow. After that, many people began to sneakily attempt to approach him for a photograph, however, it wasn't as easy as it seemed. He had a personal bodyguard and therefore only a handful of people got it. I, unfortunately, was not one of them.
However, the fact that we were in the same room, and possibly breathing the same air, was fascinating in itself.
I made friends with Wayne Huang, Associate Professor at UConn, who was sitting behind me. After chatting for awhile I realised his daughter, Sirena (picture) was in the room too! Not only did I found out she was absolutely talented in playing the violin, but she is going to perform for us at the Gala dinner on Wednesday. After seeing that she had her own Facebook fan page (here), it was pretty mind blowing watching some of her Youtube videos. The skills in her playing are utterly phenomenal. I'll definitely upload the video of her performance this Wednesday!
All the Nobel Laureates, role models and their wives together with both the founders of Elie Wiesel Foundation of Humanity and the President of Ireland.
Had a lovely chat and a selfie along with it with Sheldon Lee Glashow, a Nobel Prize winner in Physics who wanted all of us to regard him as "Shelley". Now that I think of it, this sounds oddly familiar to Sheldon in The Big Bang Theory! He was a really friendly person who then continued to be in my group during the breakout sessions.
What began as a photograph of 6 students with both Elie and Marion Wiesel, ended up as a flood of students who wanted to be part of the photograph. I guess we finally have a rather large group photo altogether?
We were once again fed well! Delicious flaky mini pastries were there during the morning tea (included croissants, danish pastries and chocolate filled puff pastries). Shortly after we were served with the same wraps and sandwiches as we did yesterday. Free time was given for us to hang out and laze under the lovely sun.
- Jeff Greenfield - winner of 3 Emmy Awards due to his contribution in news reporting
- Rich Roberts - Nobel Prize Winner in Medicine (1993)
- Dudley Herschbach - Nobel Prize winner in Chemistry (1986)
- Ted Koppel - presenter of Nightline (1979-2005)
- Peter Agre - Nobel Prize Winner in Chemistry (2003)
The role models then gathered on stage while having an interview-like scenario where they discussed the changes of journalism, the portrayal of news and the purpose of news.
Also not to forget
- Marvin Kalb (left) - host of Meet the Press and founding director of the Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard University
- Sheldon Lee Glashow - Nobel Prize winner in Physics (1979)
It was interesting watching the role models conversing and slightly arguing against one another in their viewpoints of how the news has changed from the past which included its accuracy, delivery method, content and purpose.
Some fun facts from their talk show included
- the news' instant publication (live) would eliminate the mediation process of editing which might affect the quality and accuracy of the news
- the Internet allows for unedited blogs and thus not all news online would be accurate
- the lack of topic expertise by the journalists themselves
- the old aim of spreading news has turned into a money-making machine
- the combo of both entertainment and accurate information may be the way to capture the audience
We then ended the day by breaking up into our groups. Magogodi Makhene (left) and Sarah Ransahoff were part of mine together with Rich Roberts and Sheldon. Spent the most of it just listening to the amount of information that the other students were contributing. We discussed the invasion of privacy of the Internet together with the wonders of having Google at our fingertips. The advancement of the ease of obtaining news together with the increase of the need to weed through what's available on the Internet.
Today was once again intriguing, just getting to see the many brilliant minds at the conference and listening to what they have to contribute.
Personally reminding myself of what Magogodi said on the first day (paraphrasing of course).
"Those who are more outspoken, take a step back to listen to others.
Those who are more reserved and shy, take a step forward to speak out."