Hispanics make up the biggest minority in the state of Utah.
Members of the Hispanic community find it important to see more people like them, who they can relate to, in different areas or careers — including the media industry.
For Hispanic journalists, does their ethnicity make it harder to enter this competitive field?
“No, in fact, it’s helped, especially if you speak Spanish. Having a second language will open so many doors in this profession … it will distinguish yourself from other up and coming journalists who don’t have a second language,” said ABC4 reporter Marcos Ortiz.
Ortiz is an Emmy award-winning journalist and producer who has been in the media industry for 41 years. He currently reports for the “Justice Files” — focusing on unsolved murders, missing persons cases and true crime in hopes of helping people who feel like their cases have been forgotten by the police.
“You have to be willing to work hard. It isn’t easy. Keep in mind there are many other journalists that are trying to break in as well. So what distinguishes you from others? You need to take the extra step that other journalists won’t do. You have to have a passion for this line of work,” stated Ortiz.
Other types of journalism include sportswriting.
“What I like most about sports journalism is knowing that I can be there, in the place where sport stories are written, in the place where history is seen and stars are born or consolidated. Seeing fans laugh, enjoy, suffer and even cry is something that has no comparison. Sports bring families together [and it] creates friends,” said Francisco Vazquez, multimedia journalist for Univision 32.
Vazquez has been involved in sports journalism for five years. He earned an Emmy nomination for his story featuring Major League Soccer player Sebastian Velasquez.
“I have been fortunate enough to interview great sports legends. Without a doubt, the interview with Zlatan Ibrahimovic has been one of the most important that I have done … I have had the opportunity to speak with Stephen Curry, Paul and Marc Gasol, and John Stockton, but my most famous interview has to be the one I did with Carlos Vela before the 2018 World Cup in Russia, where the statements he made with me traveled around the world,” said Vazquez.
Vazquez noted that journalism is a great career but can require sacrifice.
“Missing birthdays, parties and events is a very normal thing in this industry; one has to be there [where the story is taking place] and it is a sacrifice,” shared Vazquez.
If you want to be part of the media world, Salt Lake Community College offers an associate degree in Journalism and Digital Media. The program prepares students to enter careers or further their study in disciplines such as communication, journalism, television, social media, broadcasting and public relations.
Through the Journalism and Digital Media program, SLCC students gain the opportunity to learn about the media world by contributing to The Globe, Radio SLCC, or a student-produced show for TV, web or social media. Visit the SLCC Communication Department for more information.