Meryll Rose is the co-host of NewsChannel5’s top-rated midday show, “Talk of the Town.” A graduate of Hillsboro High School and the College of Communications at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, she began her career as a reporter and weekend anchor in Chattanooga. She returned to Nashville to produce and co-host Nashville's first television magazine show, "PM Magazine." She later worked as the producer of "This Week in Country Music,” which became the popular TNN series "Crook & Chase.” Ms. Rose joined the NewsChannel 5 team in 1987.
Which Metro Schools did you attend?
Photo courtesy of NewsChannel5.com
I had a great experience at JT Moore [Middle School] and Hillsboro High School. I moved to Nashville from Virginia in seventh grade and Nashville was a pleasant surprise.
How do you remember school? Did you participate in extra-curricular activities?
I was a serious student, but I did a lot of extracurricular activities in both middle school and high school. I played flute in the band and eventually became he drum major of the marching band in high school. I sang with every choral group except the men’s ensemble, and would have joined that one if I could have! As a “new kid” trying to find a group to connect with, music gave me a place to fit in.
Are there any teachers you remember more than others?
Probably the two teachers who had the biggest influence on me were Joe Giles, who was the choir director, and Talmadge Watts, who was the band director. Back then Hillsboro’s music program was one of the best in Metro, and that’s certainly a credit to these two outstanding teachers; hard taskmasters who demanded excellence, but always made it fun!
Members of the Hillsboro Varsity Choirs from 1973 -1980 still gather for a weekend reunion every summer in Nashville, and it’s a great time to reconnect and reminisce. We sing like we did in the old days, voices a little weaker, but still just as heartfelt, and Giles still yells at us when we talk too much! We used to close every concert with “The Lord Bless You and Keep You”, and singing it from memory with this group of friends is still a blessing after all these years.
Do you ever watch “Glee”, the television musical comedy set in a high school?
Yes. “Glee” was my high school—amplified for television’s sake. People who are artsy can be misunderstood by others who don’t share your passion, but like the kids on “Glee”, I always had a place to belong in my “music family”.
How did your Metro Schools experiences shape your career?
I have Hillsboro to thank for my career in television! On “Career Day” my senior year, we had to pick two seminars to attend, and the one on the music industry was an obvious choice. The seminar on Radio and TV sounded like a fun way to spend another hour, and little did I know that it would totally change my career path! After hearing a TV news reporter talk about his job, I was hooked…and I never looked back! That’s why I always like to speak at Career Days when I’m asked…it really can make a difference!
Do you have any advice for students?
This may sound trite, but you get out of your school life as much as you put into it. Give more than you get, and when you find that place where you can plug in and fit in, it can be life-changing!
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