Koi at summer programs.Koi Germany recently returned to Hunter College with a load of celebrity sightings to share with his classmates. Over summer break, Koi, a CTY Scholar from the Bronx, wrapped up a five-month internship with NBC’s Today Show, where he rubbed elbows with some of his favorite stars, including Seth Rogan, Zac Efron, and Daniel Radcliffe—a.k.a. Harry Potter.

A typical day on the job included getting coffee for co-hosts Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie, chatting with guests, and assisting with segment production. On one memorable day, he was on set while co-host Natalie Morales attempted stunts from Cirque du Soleil. “She was an amateur, which was cool, and kind of the point,” Koi said. 

There was the time he shared a cupcake in the green room with Paul Reubens, the actor who plays Pee Wee Herman. “I grew up watching ‘Pee Wee’s Big Adventure,’ so that was a big deal,” he said.

Meeting Al Roker was another big moment: “My first experience seeing him was on The Proud Family, so from watching him on a cartoon to exchanging jokes with him in person was surreal,” Koi said. “Just being at NBC and at the Today Show, it was one of the best experiences ever.”

Koi in Today Show

In high school, Koi spent two summers taking CTY courses in bioethics and psychology. “Both were amazing,” he said. “Although they don’t directly apply to journalism, the copious note-taking and pouring over texts for hours gave me skills I didn’t have going in. As a journalist, these are things I now do every day.”

Koi, a rising senior studying journalism, also writes stories for The Bronx Chronicle. While covering an NBC-sponsored contest for the newspaper, he met a senior publicist at NBC, which led to the Today Show opportunity. This month, Koi headed back to NBC for another internship—this time with Dateline, the investigative news show.

“I segued from Today to Dateline because I wanted to experience a more serious side of television,” Koi said. “Whereas Today is focused on relatively short, feel-good segments, Dateline is long-form in nature and tells one story in depth over the course of an hour. From a production standpoint, the two could not be anymore disparate, and I want to experience that difference first-hand.” - Katy Bowman