Journalism alumna earns Emmy award months after graduation

Alumna, Marissa (Shiock) Weltin was awarded a 2022 Upper Midwest Regional Emmy for her work as a producer at WDAY-TV. She received this award for her role in the coverage of the segment “Breaking News: Overnight Apartment Fire Plus Two Rounds of Storms” while she worked there part time as a student.

The Upper Midwest Regional Emmy awards recognize notable broadcast work within the region.

Marissa graduated from Minnesota State University Moorhead in 2022 with degrees in photojournalism, broadcast journalism and multimedia journalism, and a minor in media analysis.

Marissa was in the right place at the right time. During her senior year, she worked part time at WDAY. During finals, she had some extra time to squeeze in hours at the station. That’s when the story came to life.


As a producer, Marissa put the incoming details together. With a headset on, she talked with reporters, meteorologists, anchors, photographers and other crew members. She did this while hitting commercial breaks and timed the show to run smoothly. As a student, she gained real industry experience.

“I wasn’t just sitting and observing. I was there in the booth, timing everything, communicating with my team, in the thick of it,” she says.

In her classes, Marissa strengthened her skills and dove into her personal creative photo style. Her professors pushed her and valued her work as a student.

“I really got to know my professors,” she says. “They treat you like a professional and prepare you for the workforce. They make sure you know what you are doing.”

She also valued what the department had to offer. “MSUM has the specific photojournalism major. It’s why I came here,” she says. “I love that all my photo, video and writing classes are in the comm department.”

Her efforts pushed her beyond the classroom. She dived into Campus News, MSUM’s collaborative broadcast production class. She worked as a reporter, photographer and producer and eventually was head producer during her final two years.

Marissa also developed a love for sports photography. She joined MSUM’s GO Team, the athletic department’s marketing team, and was also the football team’s photographer. Even on the sidelines, she felt she was a part of the team.

“I really enjoy the camaraderie between you, the players, and the coaches,” she says. “I got to know everyone and always felt included.”

Today, Marissa works as the in-house photographer for EAPC Architect Engineers, an architect and engineering firm based in Grand Forks. She photographs finished projects, construction sites and company events.

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“I feel like I’m using all of the aspects of my degree,” she says.

She also lives for Friday and Saturday nights at the Scheels Arena during the winter. Marissa works part-time as a photographer for the Fargo Force hockey team. She gets to be in the player’s box with a helmet on, capturing the game on the ice.

“It doesn’t feel like work,” she says.

When it comes to her growth, she attributes much of it to the opportunities and encouragement she got as a Dragon. Her Emmy award showed that the dedication she puts into her work has already paid off.

“This showed me that I’m on the right path,” she says.

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