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The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

Murrow students conclude storytelling in Greece after three weeks

Several students share their experiences and perspectives after month abroad
The Greek flag waves off the edge of a boat traveling between islands, May 24, in Greece.

Seventeen WSU students, sixteen of whom studying in the Edward R. Murrow College of Communication, finished a three-week study abroad program in Greece June 1. 

“Storytelling in Greece – Murrow Abroad” ran from May 12 – June 1, and saw students studying in two main courses in the subjects of digital media PR strategy and multimedia storytelling. Led by Murrow professors Tracy Simmons and Nicole O’Donnell, the trip is meant to provide a mix of culture and real-life experience, according to the Murrow website

Earning six credits, students were tasked with writing a news story in one of the five cities students stopped in and also creating a promotional content strategy pitch for a local winery, according to the Murrow on the Move website

Reidar Dunn, a junior public relations major, said the trip was a once-in-a-lifetime experience that he has no regrets about. 

“It was cool going to a different country with so much history. It was interesting learning about a different culture and being fully surrounded by it every day,” Dunn said. 

The trip started in Thessaloniki before going to Delphi, Naxos, Myknos and finally ending in Athens, according to the team website. 

For the majority of the trip, a local licensed tour guide accompanied the cultural excursions. Ioannis Kiourtsoglou, who has served as the guide in years past, led the students to ancient ruins, monasteries, Mount Olympus and several other notable locations, according to the team website. 

WSU students stand around their tour guide Ioannis Kiourtsoglou as he talks about a landmark, May 27, in Athens, Greece.

Senior advertising major Tristan Wright said Kiourtsoglou also served as a valuable resource for several of the journalism stories students wrote. Wright wrote about the balance of Greece’s dilemma of maintaining and preserving archaeological sites while also modernizing the country, a story Kiourtsoglou had been his primary source. 

He said Kiourtsoglou also made it much easier for him to understand and enjoy the culture around him, helping him be more engaged with it every day. 

“I noticed people live a lot more in the moment here. People are talking with each other and they aren’t on their phones as much,” Wright said. “This trip gave me a lot more of an understanding of how there is a lot more to the world than just the U.S.”

For the journalism portion of the trip, students were put in three teams. The website team built the site for the stories to be published, the social media team operated an Instagram page to share the experiences and finally, the editing team set deadlines and editing stories for AP style, according to the team website. 

Sydnee Green, senior public relations major, said she was a part of the editing team, something that helped her with one of her own biggest weaknesses. 

“I got experience with AP style and I got to practice it a lot on this trip. It was definitely really helpful and made me improve a lot,” Green said. 

Stories published by students on the trip include topics of stray animal welfare, preservation of mythology in the Cyclades and sport-related violence in the city of Thessaloniki.

A stray cat stretches while being photographed on the street, May 25, in Mykonos, Greece.

For the PR side of things, students spent a day at a winery named Domaine Dalamara. Prepped with research, students compiled several short-form vertical videos to promote the winery while also creating a content strategy plan to share with the winery as a work sample, according to the class syllabus. 

Dunn said the winery experience was a mix of having fun as a group at an interesting place and doing something truly beneficial to his professional development. It also helped with the greater theme of the trip, which was to understand a new culture and become a more knowledgeable person because of it. 

“[I got] a new perspective. I think it is really important to understand where people come from,” Dunn said. 

Domaine Dalamaras owner Kostis Dalamaras talks to WSU students in the vineyard of his winery, May 17, in Naousa, Greece.

After three weeks, the seventeen students return to the U.S. with work for a professional portfolio in both journalism and PR, but several students say they also left with another thing. 

Green said she made so many new friends and made so many memories on the trip and that improved the quality of the trip and stories, a statement many other students on the trip resonated with. 

“I didn’t think you could make such good friends in such little time. I think I’ve made friends with every single person on this trip,” said Kevin White, a junior environmental science major. 

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About the Contributor
BRANDON WILLMAN, Multimedia editor
Brandon Willman is a junior multimedia journalism student from Vancouver, Washington. He started working as a sportswriter for the Daily Evergreen in Fall 2022 and worked as copy editor in spring 2023. Brandon was elected to be the Editor-in-chief starting in summer 2023 and served in the position from May 2023 to February 2024 before transitioning to the role of multimedia editor. He enjoys watching sports, backpacking, and watching horror movies.