Tina Fey Receives Lew Klein Excellence in the Media Award
WRITTEN BY: SIDNEY COFFMAN
On Friday, October 7, 2016, Temple’s School of Media and Communication presented Tina Fey with the Lew Klein Excellence in the Media Award. Fey spoke to a packed audience, consisting mostly of SMC students, at the Temple Performing Arts Center.
Throughout the question-and-answer session, Fey brought up memories that connected to the media field. Fey included tips on how to start off a writing career after college and how to successfully audition for Saturday Night Live. She also referenced the friendships she built at SNL, most notably her group chat with Maya Rudolph and Amy Poehler.
One student asked how Fey has dealt with difficult people in her career.
“Don’t hire anyone you don’t want to run into at the printer in the morning,” Fey said. “Take difficult people in the moment and don’t engage with their nonsense.”
While this piece of advice was universally relatable, most questions revolved around the media.
SNL, one of the longest run shows on television, now in its 41st season, has had a huge influence on the American population. Skits that stand out are politically gaged comedic debates. As this nation is in the midst of one of the most polarizing elections in American history, a student asked how the media responds to politics, specifically in regards to SNL.
“We’re trying to find what’s funny and what’s true,” Fey answered. “It’s only going to be funny to people, I think, if it rings true to them.”
SNL typically creates parodies based on actual events. The show turns current events into satire, rather than twisting the truth just to create a funny sketch.
Fey is sixteenth recipient of the Lew Klein Excellence in the Media Award. Past recipients of the award include Whoopi Goldberg, Anderson Cooper and Matt Lauer.
The Fey Family has established a scholarship, which is now in the six figures, in honor of Fey’s late father, Donald Fey. Donald and Fey’s brother, Peter, are both Temple alumni. The Donald H. Fey Memorial Scholarship is given to veterans who return from service and wish to attend Temple University.
The students at the Temple Performing Arts Center were clearly thrilled to hear Fey speak. Judging by the vast crowd that showed up on Friday morning, chances are that Fey could have filled the larger Liacouras Center with ease as well.