Jeanette Abrahamsen Teaching Portfolio
I am an Emmy Award-winning journalist. I produced thousands of hours of TV news in some of America’s largest media markets at Tampa’s NBC station, San Diego’s ABC station and the San Diego Union-Tribune. I now teach students to create multimedia stories for broadcast, web and social media platforms. I run the Florida Focus class in collaboration with WUSF TV studios where students produce daily news shows that air on Tampa’s PBS station. My reporting classes collaborated with Tampa’s NPR station to produce award-winning stories that aired dozens of times on WUSF radio. I also produced immersive 360-degree virtual tours at the University of South Florida and reported for Hashtag Our Stories. I am pursuing my PhD in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Instructional Technology.
My teaching philosophy is to arm my students with more than just skills to get a job. I arm them with the skills it takes to derive joy from their jobs. I teach them how to love learning so innovation can fuel their careers. Click here to read more.
“Ever since I started school with this disability most of my teachers made me feel bad or less than everyone else and never gave me the power or confidence Mrs. Abrahamsen gave me. I was this close to dropping out of school this semester. After taking this class with this professor she gave me so much hope to finish school. She truly changed my life.”
“This women is by far the greatest teacher I have ever met and learned from. She is possibly the greatest human on earth, she cares so much for student success and is the most self-less person. If I ever need help she was there and responded faster than anyone ever before. She deserves a raise and promotion. No she did not tell me to type this, she is just that good at what she does.”
“Abrahamsen is the most compassionate, clear, and concise teacher I’ve had my entire university experience. Whatever she is being paid, give her a raise. It has been my extreme pleasure to be in the class and learn from it.”
“Professor Abrahamsen was extremely helpful, and very considerate. I was going through a major rough patch this semester, and she was very understanding. She provided me with helpful resources both inside and outside the course, and I am very grateful to have had her as my teacher.”
“I am so grateful for professor Abrahamsen, I legitimately would have dropped out without this class.”
“I can’t express how much I appreciate everything she’s done for me, from writing tens of letters of recommendation to giving me significant feedback that has made me a better journalist. Under her tutelage, I’ve won scholarships that she’s recommended I apply for, networked and connected with amazing people who she’s introduced me to, won awards (!!) for work we did in her class, and gotten internships and excelled in them because of what she’s taught me.”
“By far one of the best professors I have ever had. Her dedication and passion for students is unreal. She was always willing to help me with any issues I had and even if she didn’t know the answer, she referred me to someone who did. I’ve never had a professor open doors for me like Jeanette has. I feel so much more equipped and knowledgeable about my field.”
“She is the epitome of what an instructor should be. She is always there to give great feedback on assignments and is easily accessible outside of class if needed. Also, she is so encouraging and is knowledgeable about the media realm. I could not have asked for more in a professor. She has truly shaped me into who I am today. Without her, I would be lost.”
“Her teaching style is so modern and her knowledge of the industry is incredible.”
“She made sure to focus on student well-being and safety during this time. I appreciate how she adjusted the course for students to be able to handle the switch and wanted to provide everyone help where needed. She is a very kind and caring professor.”
“Jeanette is an amazing teacher. There is not a single teacher on this campus that I have enjoyed more than her. She makes the one hour commute to USF easy, especially when it’s early in the morning. I have gone through quite a bit for the last two semesters and she has not only been a great teacher but a great resources for help outside of classes.”
“Phenomenal professor. Her dedication to equipping students for their industry is unparalleled. She is always available to assist her students and goes above and beyond to help us succeed. Her course curriculum is relevant and engaging and I feel well equipped upon graduation because of her.”
“Thanks to her I have created professional social media platforms (a must-have for this field) and have revised my resume which immediately landed me an internship. This professor has changed my outlook on the broadcast field.”
“We need more teachers like her! She is a reason why I decided to stay at USF!”
“Ms. Abrahamsen has brought an energy and innovations to her courses not seen in this department in years. Her enthusiasm for undergraduate education is boundless and infectious.”
“That is an astounding set of student evaluations for an immense workload. But the accomplishments she lists as part of each of those courses are even more remarkable, from collaborating with Innovative Education and WUSF to publish her students’ work to integrate all her classes into the new WUSF studio space she worked to secure.”
“She updated the curriculum in each course substantially, based on her professional experience. Most notable was moving Advanced Reporting from print-only to multimedia journalism experiences.”
“Both Instructor Abrahamsen’s teaching and service performances for 2019 far surpass what would be considered excellence for progress toward promotion.”
“She has been instrumental in assisting with journalism courses and adding visual projects to help students engage in multimedia storytelling, which is paramount in our current media industry. She continues to forge significant relationship both on and off campus that could be instrumental in creating and launching a digital network.”
“She additionally submitted new course proposals for special topics courses that Zimmerman school has been teaching 10-15 years without ever adding them formally to the university’s catalog.”
“She tirelessly put in extra effort and hours to give all her students hands-on and one-on-one instruction. In the process, she also taught her faculty colleagues new skills and processes.”
“Professor Abrahamsen’s service rivals any current faculty member’s service performance last year. This achievement must be understood in connection to her substantial teaching load.”
“Given the unrecognized administrative effort she puts toward liaising with WUSF on behalf the Zimmerman School and fulfilling her assignment as content manager for ZSAMC website and social media, it is appropriate to right-size her teaching load going forward, and to give her a formal administrative assignment.”
“The current dean of faculty, Elizabeth Bell, concurs on early application for promotion.”
When people ask me why I left my exciting TV career to teach students, I struggle to put into words how fulfilling teaching is. These two videos say more than I ever could about why I teach. My students created these videos and I will forever be grateful for the opportunity to make an impact on their lives.
What we create together
I taught TV News, Broadcast News, Advanced Reporting, Beginning Reporting, News Editing and Florida Focus at USF. You can see examples of my students’ work on the Florida Focus YouTube channel and the Zimmerman School YouTube channel that I manage. You can see examples of my videos on my YouTube channel. Here’s a playlist of some of the shows my students aired on Tampa’s PBS affiliate, in one of America’s biggest media markets.
Here is an example of a video lecture that I created to increase engagement and learning in my courses. I embed these types of videos into my Canvas courses along with multimedia resources in each lesson. I get great feedback from students about how helpful the videos are in their understanding of complex topics and techniques. You can see more examples of lectures and tutorials on my YouTube channel.
My Faculty Bio
I was honored to be featured in a video bio that included video of me teaching and an interview from my former NBC anchor, Rod Carter.
I love using my video production experience to create videos to promote my my school and celebrate my students. Here are some videos I edited for the Zimmerman School YouTube channel.
Telling Tampa Bay Stories Series
Every year, I team up with Tampa’s NPR sister station to train my Advanced Reporting students how to tell community stories for radio. My class was recognized by the Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalists with an award for the radio show we produced about Tampa Bay Black communities. We created dozens of radio shows that aired on 89.7 FM. Here are some behind the scenes videos my students made about their experience conducting interviews.
You can listen to some of the radio shows my students and I created here:
- WUSF “Telling Tampa Bay Stories Progress Village” Part 1 aired six times in 2017
- WUSF “Telling Tampa Bay Stories Progress Village” Part 2 aired six times in 2017
- WUSF “Telling Tampa Bay Stories Plant City” Part 1 aired six times between 2018 and 2019
- WUSF “Telling Tampa Bay Stories Plant City” Part 2 aired six times between 2018 and 2019
- WUSF “Telling Tampa Bay Stories Newtown” aired on Tampa’s NPR sister station more than a dozen times between 2019 and 2020:
This slideshow showcases some behind the scenes photos of community events, field trips and projects I work on with my students like the NPR Telling Tampa Bay Stories community listening project, Florida Focus news shows, Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalist award banquets, career readiness workshops, Online News Association conference and Black Heritage Music Festival.
Social Media Management
In addition to teaching, I also manage several social media accounts. I create and upload multimedia content. I use search engine optimization to increase reach and engagement.
Since I started managing the Zimmerman School YouTube channel in 2017, the channel got more than 93,000 views. Subscribers increased by more than 300%. People watched more than 3,300 hours of our videos.
I manage the Zimmerman School Facebook page with 11 of my coworkers. I started posting on the Zimmerman School Facebook page in November of 2019. Since then, my coworkers and I got an organic post reach total of 78,719. Of those, 46,286 of the reach came from posts that I wrote, created media for and published. From the time I started posting on behalf of the Zimmerman School, the 12 of us totaled 6,747 unique engaged users. Of those, 4,560 were comments, reactions and shares of posts that I created and published. In that same time, our total video view was 8,823. Of those, 6,891 came from videos that I published.
My Social Media Portfolio
I publish posts using SEO, respond to comments and engage students and stakeholders. I keep in touch with students after they graduate and use the Z School social media platforms to cheer them on when they get jobs. My goal is to create a supportive digital community that celebrates our student success and engages students to reduce isolation. Here are a few examples of posts that I created and published:
Zimmerman School Website Management
In addition to helping run social media platforms at the Zimmerman School, I also manage the website. I write Associated Press style articles, publish updates about coronavirus safety measures and edit multimedia content to make the site more engaging. Click here to check out my work.
My Teaching Website
I created a mobile-friendly WordPress website to post lectures and resources for my students. I conducted video interviews with a variety of professionals to give advice to students and teach them about the media industry. In addition to using the website during class, many former students use my site to continue their professional development after they graduate. You can see the entire site at JeanetteAbrahamsen.com. Here are a few examples of popular posts my students enjoy:
- TV Newsroom Jobs: Tips From TV Professionals
- Mobile Storytelling: How To Tell Stories With Your Cell Phone
- Producing TV News
Virtual Campus Tour
I produced several virtual tours for USF including the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Engineering, Muma College of Business and the Honors College. I taught my students how to produce and edit 360 degree photos. I interviewed students and wrote scripts. I aggregated the best videos and photos by USF students, faculty and staff to share USF stories with prospective students. Click here to get a behind the scenes tour of the Zimmerman School, which is the third stop on the CAS VR tour.
USF Digital Communities Steering Committee (for the Vice Provost)
I was asked to join a campus-wide initiative in the summer of 2020 to help students, staff, faculty and stakeholders improve our digital communication as the coronavirus forced us to physically distance. I was nominated to be the co-chair of the Enabling Technology Group. Every week, I spend several hours meeting with USF representatives. My responsibilities include creating solutions to reduce the digital divide. I worked with UCM, Innovative Education, IT and the USF library to increase funding and awareness for the library’s free laptop checkout. I recommended that USF provide wifi hotspots for students with limited access to high-speed internet. I was also part of the team that developed a survey to identify students’ digital needs.
I spearheaded the creation of a web page that consolidated links to resources that the USF community needs more than ever during this disruptive pandemic. The web page helped direct users to resources like financial aid, technology, mental and physical health and the food pantry. I also met with web developers to showcase a virtual events calendar that will encourage us to stay engaged even when we’re working remotely.
USF Digital Network Committee (USF)
I am the chair of the USF Digital Network Committee that created a space in the WUSF-TV studios for students to have class in a professional environment. After several years of proposals, research, meetings and presentations, it felt wonderful to finally achieve my goal of teaching classes at WUSF. Shortly before the start of the fall semester in 2019, Provost Ralph Wilcox announced that the Zimmerman School could begin moving classes into the WUSF studios. He asked me to work with Innovative Education, USF Facilities, UCM and Muma to complete this cross-campus collaboration.
I was also part of a team that prepared a presentation for the Board of Trustees. The Board approved our request for a $1.8 million upgrade to WUSF TVB. The renovation includes an innovative classroom space that will double as a conference room for client presentations, an audio recording room, graphic design suite and faculty meeting rooms.
Undergraduate Committee (Zimmerman School)
As part of my Undergraduate Committee duties, I strategize curriculum updates to ensure students in the Zimmerman School are being taught up-to-date lessons that will help them succeed in our quickly evolving media industry. I host meetings with my coworkers to brainstorm innovative ways to build out our majors that will give our students an advantage in the job market.
Social Media Committee (Zimmerman School)
As the chair of the Zimmerman School’s Social Media Committee I reviewed and created curriculum proposals to integrate social media into our current and future courses. I interviewed experts in the field to evaluate the tools and certificates our students should have to increase their chances of getting a job.
Scholarship Award Banquet Committee (Zimmerman School)
My role on the Zimmerman School Scholarship Award Banquet Committee has allowed me the opportunity to give hundreds of thousands of dollars to deserving students. In addition to reviewing student applications and scholarship criteria, I help plan award banquets by inviting entertaining and inspiring speakers. I write the banquet speeches and create the videos and text slides that are displayed throughout the venue. I also team up with the audio/visual support to test and run the presentations.
- Assistant Digital Communications Director (for the Office of the Provost) 2019
- Instructor I (for Zimmerman School) 2019
- Instructor I (for Zimmerman School) 2020
In 2020, I was invited to present at the JEA/NSPA National High School Journalism Convention to show students how my Florida Focus TV news class is creating newscasts remotely. For the presentation, I created this video that includes tips on using green screens, cell phone videography and virtual workplace communication strategies. I also hosted a Q&A where teachers, advisors and students asked me questions about how they could create similar remote TV production workflows.
In 2019, I was invited to be the keynote speaker at a mobile journalism conference in the Netherlands. In addition to participating in a panel on fake news, I gave a speech about the future of mass communications including selfie journalism, social media and the power of storytelling to improve our democracy. Here is the video of my keynote address.
I also presented at the Florida College System Publications Association Conference in Tampa in January and November 2019. My presentation topics focused on how mobile storytelling technology is democratizing and innovating the media industry.
Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalists
I am so grateful for my community partners at the Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalists. We’ve teamed up countless times to host student workshops, career readiness panels and scholarship banquets to help students network and launch their careers. Local professional often invite my students to shadow them at local stations and news papers after meeting at these events. This often leads to students getting internships and jobs. It’s exciting to leverage my professional networks in the Tampa Bay media community to help USF students pursue their dreams. Here are some photos from the panels I hosted at USF that included local reporters, photographers and anchors from print, radio and TV outlets.
Hashtag Our Stories
I am constantly honing my skills and networking with innovators in my field so I can create exciting learning opportunities for my students. One of these collaborations was with the social media giant Hashtag Our Stories. This outlet is one of Snapchat’s select publisher companies. The owners agreed to team up with my Advanced Reporting and News Editing class to give students the opportunity to publish their vertical social media stories to a global audience from 13 to 24 years old. My students and I worked together to create stories that got millions of views. My students were able to add this to their resumes and portfolios to give them an incredible competitive edge.
But first, I had to learn this new Snapchat style of storytelling, so I spent the summer of 2019 learning how to report for social media. Here’s an example of one story I created that used selfie journalism techniques to teach young girls to tell their own story about an issue that greatly impacted their community, period poverty.
I also produced a video about USF’s LGBTQ+ dorms for the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. I worked with USF Housing and several USF students to complete the project. Hashtag Our Stories published the video on Snapchat and got more than 3,646,000 views. This was a great way to celebrate USF. The video got global attention in USF’s target age demographic. USF’s Housing and Residential staff told me several students saw the story and were interested in learning more about the Stonewall Dorms.
I helped USF get global attention in stories I contributed to about college move-in day and Denim Day, which raises awareness about sexual assault. In 2019, I reported on or contributed to the following stories published by Hashtag Our Stories on Snapchat, Instagram and Facebook. These stories totaled tens of millions of views:
- WTF?! It’s 2019 & Women Are Still Paid Less Than Men – Published March 2019
- Trans Athletes Speak Out – Published March 2019
- Dancing For Women’s History Month! – Published March 2019
- Gamers Gonna Game. Even In School! – Published March 2019
- Your Reactions To The College Admissions Scam! – Published March 2019
- You’ll Soon Need This Before Traveling To Europe – Published March 2019
- We Asked If Men And Women Are Equal At Work – Published March 2019
- Denim Day Fighting Sexual Assault in Jeans – Published April 2019
- Social Media is Going Blue – Published April 2019
- Women Dancing Together: Women’s History Month may be over, but we’re celebrating all year! – Published April 2019
- What’s going on with the Russia investigation? – Published April 2019
- What Americans Think of New Zealand’s Gun Ban – Published April 2019
- 9 Ways To Turn Your Frown Upside Down – Published May 2019
- 50th Anniversary Of The Stonewall Riots – Published June 2019
- These 8th Grade Girls Made a Podcast About Periods – Published June 2019
- He’s Fighting Hunger, One Cupcake at a Time – Published July 2019
- Back Flipping Into College Like… – Published August 2019
- Why Taylor Swift Called Out The White House at VMAs – Published August 2019
- What If You Had To Wear THIS To School – Published September 2019
- This Festival Celebrates Women – Published October 2019
- Unicorn Day: Your Best Snaps!
- Do YOU Think College Athletes Should Get Paid?
- These Libraries Might Actually Make You Want To Study!
- Why Americans Are Having Fewer Babies
Innovative Education Collaborations
I’ve been lucky to collaborate with several different groups in the USF Innovative Education department. I took my classes on several field trips to the Innovative Education office that oversees USF Admissions to meet the content creators, social media buyers and web developers. Students wrote and copy edited blogs, used SEO to increase content visibility, measured the effectiveness of social media posts, created and aggregated multimedia content.
Here are some of the stories my News Editing students published on the USF Admissions blog and social platforms:
I pride myself on updating my syllabi to reflect changes in our industry and innovation in technology. I adjust my syllabus each semester as I create new collaborations with my classes and community partners like Tampa’s PBS affiliate, NBC affiliate, NPR sister station, Hillsborough County Government TV and Hashtag Our Stories. I also collaborate with other USF departments and organizations like the Access 3D lab, USF Health, Digital Media Commons and USF’s 360 degree virtual campus tour.
You can see examples of my syllabi here:
- TV Practicum- Florida Focus RTV 4942C.001S21
- WUSF-TV Newsbreak- Florida Focus MMC 4936.001 F20
- Advanced Reporting JOU 3101.001S20
- WUSF-TV Newsbreak MMC 4936.003S20
- Broadcast News RTV 3301.001S19
- Broadcast News RTV 3301.002S19
- News Editing JOU4201.001S19
- Advanced Reporting JOU 3101.001S19
- Florida Focus MMC4936.001F19
- News Editing JOU4201.001F19
- Broadcast News RTV 3301.001F19
- Advanced Reporting JOU 3101.001F19
IN THE MEDIA
- WUSF interviewed me for the “Florida Matters More” podcast in 2017: https://www.blubrry.com/florida_matters_more/29828875/telling-tampa-bay-stories-part-two/
- Featured as a journalism expert in interview that aired on FOX13 Tampa April 30, 2018 http://www.fox13news.com/news/local-news/professor-news-platforms-change-but-remaining-fair-and-balanced-shouldnt
- Featured as a journalism expert in interview that aired on FOX13 Tampa May 1, 2018 http://www.fox13news.com/news/local-news/millennials-face-fast-paced-digital-savvy-generation-of-journalism