FIYou profile: Neil Reisner

Name: Neil Reisner

Hometown: Los Angeles, Calif., but my soul lives somewhere between Central New Jersey and Jerusalem. Which might mean I’m all wet.

Job Title/Department: Associate Professor of Journalism, School of Journalism and Mass Communication

Campus: Biscayne Bay Campus

In a nutshell: I teach students intrigued by the idea of journalism the basics of the craft and try to instill in them a passion for the traditional role of the craft as a conduit of critical information, a government watch dog and a voice for those who have no voice. I try to “de-glamorize” the field and help them understand that it’s not for the faint-hearted.

Number of years at FIU: 10 – three full-time, seven as an adjunct.

What do you enjoy most about your job? When students get excited about what I teach them.

What do you think faculty/staff and students should know about your department? That our department graduates more Spanish-speaking journalists than any school in the country. That our graduates are in demand by publications and television stations trying to diversify their staffs and coverage. And that our graduates occupy important slots at papers and television stations in South Florida and around the country.

Where is your favorite spot on campus? Why? The waterfront by the School of Hospitality and Hotel Management. It’s quiet and serene, a place to go when you need a reminder of what’s important.

If there is one thing you wish everyone knew about FIU, what would it be? That it’s one of the best-kept secrets of education in the country. Students who really want to learn will find faculty who really want to teach them and friends who’ll be with them the rest of their lives.

Family snapshot: Married 19 years to Ruth Honigfeld, a clinical social worker and librarian at the Jewish day school, which daughters Jolie, 11, and Aleeza, 7, attend. Other family members include Eddie, the blind, epileptic and not-very-smart Cocker Spaniel; Pearl the Cockatoo; Pebbles the ball python; several fish and a bunch of tadpoles living in an aquarium in the backyard.

Word that best describes you: Passionate.

First paying job: Summer camp counselor.