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Christian Felkl: Pine Needle Editor for 2008-2009

Pine Needle editor Christian Felkl
ChristianFelkl, editor of the The Pine Needle for 2008-2009, second from right in the front row, with others of the 2007-2008 newspaper staff, including Spring 2008 editor Robert Deckert, front row far right next to Felkl, Fall 2007 editor Amanda Hickey, third from right in the second row, and Pine Needle faculty advisor Dr. Judy Curtis, second row far left.
Christian Felkl, a junior journalism major at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke from Raleigh, N.C., is editor of The Pine Needle campus newspaper for the 2008-2009 school year.

Enrolled in UNCP's Mass Communications Department in both the journalism and broadcasting tracks, Felkl had revealed his journalistic skills and leadership capabilities as he reported and photographed campus news stories during his earlier undergraduate years. Before receiving the editorship assignment for his senior year, Felkl had served as reporter, photographer, news editor and managing editor for The Pine Needle.

The Pine Needle has experienced exponential growth in quality and circulation over the last six years, according to Dr. Judy Curtis, Pine Needle faculty advisor and a professor in the Mass Communications Dept.

The number of pages in the paper has grown by 50 percent and more for some issues. It's page dimensions have grown from tabloid to full-width broadsheet. Circulation has expanded around town and at UNCP satellite campuses. The addition of a section of local off-campus news coverage brought about a closer relationship with the Pembroke community. Video news packages, podcasts and blogs added to the newspaper's website brought new ways for residents and alumni at a distance to keep up with campus news.

Felkl, who is very open about his passion for journalism, said the student newspaper has a strongly positive reputation on campus and around town.

"Being editor is a professional job and I take it seriously," Felkl said. "I have high standards for myself, which I will share with others so The Pine Needle name will be synonymous with excellence."

The Student Publications Board serves as the selection committee for the newspaper editor position as well as arbitrator in the event censorship pressures arise. However, the board does not attempt to provide active oversight of the day-to-day workings of The Pine Needle.

The Board was impressed with Felkl's vision for the paper. He said he plans to further enhance the professional operations of the paper and fine tune its coverage.

"I know Christian will assemble a dedicated team that will take the newspaper to even greater accomplishments in the coming year," Dr. Curtis said.

"He has been an active member of the campus community, serving on committees and boards as well as a resident director for housing," she said. "I'm sure he will take his leadership role as editor of The Pine Needle very seriously."

Felkl, who is on the university Chancellor's List for extraordinary academic scholarship, also has directed live on-air sportscasts for the WNCP-TV campus station, produced a 30-minute sports talk show for the station, and served as residence hall director for the Oak Hall dorm.

Posted: 2008 APRIL 1
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