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The Talk of TROY: Troy University Provides Resources to BTW after a Fire

September 4, 2018

After a fire damaged sections of Booker T. Washington Magnet High School (BTW), Troy University stepped in to help and provide resources for the broadcast journalism students.

All of BTW’s previous broadcast journalism equipment was destroyed, so the university donated cameras, microphones, and an audio board, among other items. Donna Schubert, associate vice chancellor for marketing and communication, says this is an investment in BTW’s future. 

“We knew that these great students weren’t going to have that equipment that they needed to learn to become great journalists,” Schubert said. “So we knew that it was time for us to do something about it.”

Walter Givhan, the senior vice chancellor for advancement and economic development at Troy, says he hopes the donation will make a difference in the lives of BTW’s students. 

“We had thousands of dollars’ worth of surplus equipment that we were no longer using,” Givhan said. “It can make a difference here. These students now are even better equipped, and can do more and we depend upon these students – they come to Troy.”

Before the fire, the school had three cameras for student use, now, with the donation from Troy they have five.   

“This is going to allow my students to continue the work that they’ve done,” said Richard Walker, BTW’s broadcast media instructor. “You know we lost the equipment in the fire, but uh this is truly amazing. It’s a godsend.”

It’s been an emotional time for everyone. Aylon Gipson, is a junior at the high school, when he first heard news of the fire, he hoped for a silver lining. “I was shocked and I started crying, but I knew we will have some good come out of this stuff,” Gibson said. “I appreciate every single person that has donated time, money just to help us out. This is amazing.”

The students have also been invited to attend J-Day, Troy University’s annual journalism education event, free of charge. 

Also on this week’s Talk of TROY, a Troy University professor helped publish a long-lost war story by Ernest Hemingway. Click here to listen to the full story.

The Talk of TROY is a production of TROY Public Radio, a listener supported service of Troy University.