ABC News’ Byron Pitts Spends Two Days Mentoring HPU Students

Byron Pitts, ABC News’ co-anchor of ‘Nightline’ and High Point University’s Journalist in Residence, visited campus to network with students.


HIGH POINT, N.C., Nov. 21, 2019 – High Point University students spent the last two days networking with and learning from ABC News’ Byron Pitts. Pitts visited campus on Nov. 20 and 21 to mentor students as HPU’s Journalist in Residence.

Pitts visited various classes in HPU’s Nido R. Qubein School of Communication. He sat one-on-one with them and gave feedback on stories they submitted for him to review.

Pitts met with video journalism students in the Nido R. Qubein School of Communication to participate in the “Byron Pitts Project.” Students interviewed Pitts as a group for 30 minutes and created their own stories for Pitts to review and offer feedback.

“Getting feedback from Byron really gives me the opportunity to expand on the knowledge I already had, and to grow as a journalist and broadcaster,” said Thomas Hart, HPU sophomore. “My parents and I have seen his stories on TV, and now I have a connection with him. At HPU, I can see how he works as a journalist, and how he works to find his stories and tell them to a national audience.”

Pitts is an Emmy award-winning reporter with more than 30 years of experience that he brings back to HPU each time.

“I love coming to High Point University. For me, it’s like going to church because it lifts my spirits,” said Pitts. “The students and the faculty are good, intentional people, which is part of the culture. I get far more out of coming to HPU than I give.”

“I worked with Byron last year in a big group, and today I worked with him one-on-one,” said Ally Patterson, HPU junior. “He taught us the reporting that we’re doing today is about the people and not just the facts. I want to focus on the person’s story in my work.”

Pitts also spent time in HPU’s new Wanek School of Natural Sciences to help students communicate about their research. He helped students think about their audience, how to tell a story and how to get people excited about their findings in the laboratory.

“Regardless of what your discipline is, there’s power in the narrative,” explained Pitts. “There’s power to be able to tell someone your experiences and someone else’s experiences. I’m glad that HPU understands that and gives me the opportunity to explain that. I believe deeply in paying it forward because none of us gets to where we are by ourselves. All of us have a responsibility to be of service to others.”

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