As the bureau chief for the Connecticut Law Tribune, Michael Marciano spends his days interviewing lawyers and judges; writing, editing and publishing. Marciano graduated from Southern Connecticut State University in 1994 with a B.A. in journalism, and started his career in newspapers, writing for the New Haven Advocate, the Harford Advocate and the Bristol Press.
Interview by Bradley Robidoux, SCSU JRN ‘23. Answers were condensed and edited in 2022.
What type of challenges do you face in your job?
You need to know the material. I think sometimes you might be worried you are not as smart as the attorneys you’re covering and you might not know the case as well. And you might be afraid of asking stupid questions. But, I think after a while, you realize even if there are stupid questions, they really aren’t. You need to ask questions if you don’t know what’s going on, and to learn about the cases.
How did you get your start after graduating from Southern?
I started at the New Haven Advocate and I worked there for three months. I was able to get 13 articles published during those first few months, which was, beyond what they expected. So, immediately I was eager to write. After those three months, they told me there was an opening at the Hartford Advocate to be the listings editor, which is the person who’s in charge of following all the stuff that’s going out, concerts and museums and theater.
When I was at Southern, I thought was going to be a rock star. I had a lot of fun doing the music coverage for the Hartford Advocate and going out and being like the party guy and having fun. But I also really enjoy the craft of writing, and I like to be able to write a well-crafted piece.
Was there a professor who got you involved in journalism?
I think Robin Glassman saw that I had an alternative view on a lot of things. I took a couple of classes with her, and I would go against the grain when it came to just reviewing different books and things like that. So, she was the one who steered me in the direction of the New Haven Advocate, which was not entirely mainstream.
What advice would you give to journalism students at Southern?
Any time you have an opportunity to do an internship, take it. Any time you have an opportunity to write something, take it.
Any opportunity that someone comes up to you and says, “Here’s somebody you should call or talk to,” take that opportunity to do it. Just talk to people and your vision of what you want to do for the future will come through. Keep trying different things and don’t go stagnant.