October 3, 2008

The Sun Speaks With CBS’ Dave Price ’ 87

Print More

CBS’ The Early Show plans to broadcast portions of its show live from Cornell on Monday as part of its report on how college has changed over the past twenty-five years. Weather anchor Dave Price ’87 will contrast his own experiences at Cornell as an ILR student with those of college students today. The show will feature interviews with students, professors, administrators and experts on applying to college.
The Sun interviewed Price when he was in Ithaca last week preparing for Monday’s show.

The Sun: Why did you choose to come back to Cornell for this report?
Dave Price: Cornell is very emblematic of many colleges right now — overridden by applicants for very few spaces, battling with issues of parents and students being able to afford a good education. In addition to the fact that I love this place, this is a good example to the rest of the country.[img_assist|nid=32409|title=The Price is right|desc=Weather anchor Dave Price ’87 will be on campus to broadcast live segments for CBS on Monday.|link=node|align=left|width=|height=0]
Sun: What do you want to accomplish with Monday’s broadcast?
Price: I want to both demonstrate my love for Cornell to the national audience we have on The Early Show, and I would love it if everybody could wipe the crust out of their eyes and make it right here [outside Olin Library] … and show some school spirit.
Sun: What have you found so far? How has college changed over the past 25 years?
Price: The campus is much more diverse in so many different ways and I’m not simply talking about racial diversity. [There is] geographic diversity, diversity in thought. The use of technology is so vastly different from when I was here. I typed my papers on a typewriter. I dialed a rotary phone. I didn’t have a mobile phone. This hyper-informed student body is remarkable.
Sun: Do you think that hyper-informed necessarily means well-informed?
Price: I think technology offers a double-edged sword. Computers and blackberries can create someone who’s very well-connected to the rest of humanity or it can create someone who’s completely cut off from reality. Whether it’s better or not that you guys have technology that we didn’t, the question remains to be seen.
Sun: How would you characterize your memories of Cornell?
Price: Everything was sweeter then, it seems … [When you return to campus, you think of] happy thoughts and great friends. You think of the Hot Truck and parties on the Slope and you think of lots of laughter. You don’t think of cramming for exam. You don’t think of the pressure to succeed. But even if you do take that into consideration, this was just an exceptional time, which I cherish.
Sun: How did you spend your time at Cornell?
Price: I lived in U-Hall 2, which, as I’ve described it, was Shawshank with posters. It was rundown and built as temporary housing. I hung out at Noyes — the old Noyes. I need a GPS system to get around here now. I spent a lot of time at Kappa Sig where my buddies were brothers. I was on the Concert Commission. We brought Stevie Ray Vaughn, Suzanne Vega, [and] B. B. King [to campus], which were some pretty good acts for the time. I wasn’t quite the big man on campus. I was a little bit of a dork, and I’m still pretty much a dork. Now I’m just a dork who’s recognized.
Sun: You worked in corporate human resources for 10 years before you started your broadcasting career. Why the change?
Price: It took me a while to find what my passion was. I’ve always wanted to be a weatherman. But I don’t regret a day of the academic study I’ve pursued and I don’t regret a day in the corporate world for 10 years because I use those skills now. I think the days of one career for a lifetime are over anyway and they’re overrated. Variety is the spice of life.
Sun: Why are you drawn to journalism?
Price: I love telling a story. I love being an eyewitness to history. I love reporting on things of great consequence. And I like making people laugh over nothing. And I really appreciate that bond that you can develop with the audience.
Sun: What advice would you give to Cornell students?
Price: Understand that the education you’re getting here doesn’t start and end in the classroom. There are so many things you learn through these four years. Find people who look different, talk differently, and have different beliefs. Take it all in. Be confident in yourself to make your own decisions. Be well-informed and educated and [know] it’s not just about academics.