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By Youth For Youth

An Eye-Opening Experience

By Matthew Tan
Year 2, Bachelor of Social Sciences, majoring in Communications and New Media
National University of Singapore

An Eye-Opening Experience

My experience being part of The Media Conversation (TMC) has been a fulfilling and eye-opening one, especially as student emcee for the Storytelling: From Dreams to Reality Speaker Series session. The experience of hosting a virtual event was entirely new and foreign to me, although I have been emceeing since secondary school. Such an arrangement came with its worries, as I was concerned about my Internet connection getting disrupted at a critical moment and not being able to interact at length with the speakers to get to know them and the nature of their jobs better, especially when I had to also come up with questions for them for the Q&A segment.

Fortunately, with the help of the organisers of TMC, I was able to get the clarifications needed promptly as they were just a WhatsApp message away – something I am extremely thankful for!

Matthew Tan with speakers Lingyi Xiong, Founder, 01 Studio (Wah!Banana); Wan Haiz, Commissioning Editor, Mediacorp; and Rachel Ng, Commissioning Editor, Mediacorp
(from top left in clockwise direction)

Truth be told, I was initially unfamiliar with the process of Commissioning, and what the role of the Commissioning Editor entailed – the topic of the entire webinar! I thus felt it was my responsibility as the emcee to have a good understanding of what it was. I harnessed the power of the Internet to read up on online articles that allowed me to better understand what Commissioning is and even looked through the LinkedIn profiles of the speakers to obtain information to help draft the speaker’s introduction segment of my script. What followed was an exchange of messages with the speakers to ensure that they were comfortable with what I had written about them, where they even offered suggestions on possible edits to be made.

Fast forward to the day of the Speaker Series – everything proceeded without a hitch. My Internet connection worked well, and the organising team ensured a smooth and pleasant experience for all, even through Zoom. 

This experience was very well the highlight of my (short) Winter break and I’m glad I took up the opportunity that was presented by the Communications and New Media department at NUS. My greatest thanks go out to the Mediacorp team for being so accommodating and helpful when I had any queries, even if it meant having to work through the weekend just before TMC. 

Once again, thank you to the TMC team, and I look forward to the future iterations of the event!

You can catch Matthew in action and gain meaningful insights from the speakers in the video recording of the Storytelling: From Dreams to Reality Speaker Series session here!