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Carolina Ahora brings Spanish programming to journalism school

The Carolina Ahora Feature control room is where the english/spanish translations are done and on-screen video is monitored.

The Carolina Ahora Feature control room is where the english/spanish translations are done and on-screen video is monitored.

Monday through Thursday, the show is the counterpart to Carolina Week, where the three most relevant stories from that show are translated into Spanish and broadcast via Instagram. On Friday, the show is live with an anchor and a co-anchor, with the co-anchor in charge of the Instagram posts.

Carol Bono, a first-year graduate student, said they try to cover both international and local news that is relevant to the Hispanic community.

“For instance, we’ve covered immigration issues that, due to time, may not be covered by Carolina Week,” Bono said.

Yet making the show hasn’t been completely smooth sailing. The biggest struggle for senior Laura Brache has been the lack of manpower.

While the journalism school has given the show access to anything it needs, finding students who are comfortable enough to speak Spanish on camera has proven to be difficult.

“Our big deal is having a crew everyday,” Brache said. “If we even have a show on our everyday Instagram platform, we’re very lucky because we don’t have a large group of people available all the time.”

Carolina Ahora consists of eight students. In contrast, Carolina Week has around 30.

Yet for all of the struggles, the Carolina Ahora staff has already seen the impact the show has had on the community.

Senior John Aceti said the show has helped him feel more connected to those who are underrepresented on campus.

“It’s inclusive for everyone on campus,” Aceti said. “I just think it’s important that anyone who wants the news can get the news.”

The show received its first hateful comment in response to a story about businesses in Chapel Hill closing for A Day Without Immigrants.

“We translated it and put it on Facebook sharing the news, and someone commented, ‘Speak English, this is America,’” Brache said.

But just because there are negative responses doesn’t mean the work they’re doing is unimportant. In fact, it’s the opposite, Bono said.

“Once you start getting negative comments, you know you’re making an impact,” Bono said.

As for the future of the show, Brache knows exactly what she wants to see.

“I want it to be as relevant and as wholesome as possible, in order for it to reach anyone and everyone who wants to know the stories that are happening here at UNC and the around country that are impacting the Latino community.”


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