WEST ORANGE, NJ – Burgeoning journalists in the Write on Sports program at Edison Middle School had the unique opportunity to view an interview with a local sports figure and interact with them on March 6, when WBJO News Director Doug Doyle and Seton Hall Women’s Tennis player Michel Matson paid a visit to the school.
The event was organized by Write on Sports Marketing Director Shannon Schmitt and Write on Sports Advisor, Edison teacher Jennifer Blume.
Doyle has been a legend in local sports and newscasting on radio station WBGO since 1998. Under his leadership WBGO has won more than 200 awards from national and local journalistic organizations. He is also the host of the award-winning podcast, SportsJam.
“I’ve been involved with Write on Sports from the beginning because I believe in founder Byron Yake and the program’s mission to get kids excited about writing,” began Doyle. “Byron has done an amazing job in expanding this important program to other districts and states.”
Matson hails from Christ Church, New Zealand, and plays singles and doubles for the Seton Hall University Women’s Tennis Team.
“Seton Hall tennis player ‘Mikey’ Matson was another example of a terrific WOS guest,” noted Doyle. “She really connected with the students and you could feel the comfort level grow with each question the students asked. Matson was a fun and engaging story teller. Coming from New Zealand, students got a rare opportunity to find out, not only about her sports career, but also her family and home.”
Doyle interviewed Matson so that students could observe the various skills required to collect the kind of information that makes for good sports articles.
“The WOS instructors have done a tremendous job teaching kids about researching, gathering information, interviewing and most importantly, writing,” explained Doyle. “Many athletes have told me they wished they had a program like WOS in place when they were young. I thoroughly enjoy showing the students, in a real-life setting, how to ask the proper questions during a coach or player interview.”
In addition to the club at Edison Middle School, West Orange middle school students can attend a two-week summer program at Montclair State University. They must be recommended by their teacher. The free program offers them opportunities to work with athletes, put together articles and interviews, and learn from sports professionals like Doyle.
“Why do I do this? The kids provide me with energy, as well as hope, that someday they’ll be successful in whatever field they choose,” Doyle concluded. “I want to be someone who plays a part in that. I’m proud of my long-time involvement with WOS.”