This is going to be a pretty intense week. I have a project due in one class, and a portfolio due in the other. And, I have to finish everything with the main goal being– graduation. I see it already, like a bright light at the end of a very, very long, dark tunnel.
And then, hopefully, will come the freedom to dedicate as much time and energy as I can to Holdin’ Out for a Hero. I’ve been anticipating that moment, and I look forward to it.
Tonight, for the first entry I will be writing (I owe two!), I’d like to focus on “CBS Evening News anchor” Katie Couric, a veteran journalist who is “the first solo female anchor of a weekday evening news program on one of the three traditional U.S. broadcast networks.” Bottom line: she rocks.
As the previous co-host of “The Today Show,” Couric has been called “America’s Sweetheart.”
As both a journalist and as a person, Katie is extremely conscious of her role as a public figure, and of her ability to effect positive change in society. In March 2000, having lost her own husband to colon cancer, the anchor underwent a colonoscopy on-air. Her goal was to inspire viewers to get screened for colon cancer.
With her colonoscopy having raised much-needed awareness for colon cancer screening, Ms. Couric decided to broadcast her own mammogram, as well, for “The Today Show.”
In 2004, Couric was the Guest of Honor at the inaugural American Cancer Society Discovery Ball. She was also the “honored guest” at the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundationfall gala.
She is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. Oh, and here’s a little interesting morsel of information. A study published by the Archives of Internal Medicine affirms that, indeed, Katie inspired many to get checked for colon cancer. The study says, “Katie Couric’s televised colon cancer awareness campaign was temporarily associated with an increase in colonoscopy use in 2 different data sets. This illustrates the possibility that a well-known individual can draw attention and support to worthwhile causes.”
So, it actually took a prestigious, peer-reviewed medical journal to infer what I already knew from common sense at the age of ten: the celebrity factor actually works in raising awareness for a cause! I can’t tell you how frustrating it’s been for me to try to get this point across to so many people, starting with celebrities and other public figures.
And that’s the scoop on Katie Couric. I’ve got another entry to write, following this one. Until next time, I’m Laura Tellado, for Holdin’ Out for a Hero.