College Experiences Add Up
Scott Underwood is a graduate of the Anderson College class of 1987. He received a bachelor’s degree in communications. After undergraduate, Underwood received a master’s degree in European history from Ball State University. Throughout his schooling, Underwood focused on as many journalism classes as he could to gain experience in the journalism field.
Now, Underwood’s days are filled with the three positions he holds: head editor and general manager of The Herald Bulletin in Anderson, Indiana, the regional editor for Indiana/Illinois Community Newspaper Holdings Inc. (CNHI) and the general manager of Pharos-Tribune and Kokomo Tribune.
Underwood’s experiences while at AU kept him busy. He was a member of the three-person sports information department, wrote for the Andersonian, freelanced as a sports writer and played basketball. Senior year, Underwood was promoted to co-editor of the Andersonian where he accepted greater responsibility for the paper as a whole.
The connections he made while in undergrad were notable. Through his freelancing position, Underwood had the ability to sit in while the sports editor for The Herald Bulletin edited his stories. Underwood spoke strongly of his professors’ ability to lecture and provide their knowledge from field experience.
He said, “I always felt like she [Professor Beverly Pitts] was in my corner in terms of my success.” He mentioned another professor, Holly Miller, who was a mentor to him in terms of writing style and commitment to accuracy and thoroughness, which are qualities that he values in a professional atmosphere.
He said journalists should have professionalism, be curious and have the determination to get their facts right. A clear, easy-to-read, accurate piece is what can best be communicated to the public.
Underwood recognizes the field of journalism is changing. He said, “It really just enables us to use many platforms to communicate with people the way they want to be communicated with the way they want the news delivered.”
Because of all the different modes news can appear through he said, “We call ourselves a newspaper still, but we're really truly more of a news organization on many platforms.” Along with print and e-news, The Herald Bulletin produces magazines and coffee-table books.
Being able to write about many topics showing interest across the different fields displays versatility which Underwood believes is a growing area. He said, “I think focusing on that versatility, sort of building on your strengths, but also recognizing your weaknesses and being determined to turn those into strengths is really, really important.”
Rebekah Lynn Hisle is a junior from Saint Joseph, Michigan, majoring in public relations and minoring in sport marketing and writing. Hisle is an associate with Fifth Street Communications®, a student-run public relations agency at Anderson University.