Canadian journalist suffers 'vulnerable moment' while reporting live on air

Bruno Cooke January 11, 2023
Canadian journalist suffers 'vulnerable moment' while reporting live on air
This image was downloaded from Getty Images Creative on January 11, 2023.

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Canadian news reporter Jessica Robb suffered what appeared to be a bout of faintness – the Daily Mail called it a “medical emergency” – live on air during a broadcast on Sunday, January 8, 2023, prompting many to wonder what could have caused something like that for someone of such a young age.

The following morning, CTV Edmonton’s Twitter page updated its followers, as promised, on her status.

It thanked all those who had inquired as to Robb’s health, and assured audiences that she was “feeling better” and “resting.”

Jessica also thanked those who had reached out, as well as her cameraman “for being there” and fellow reporter Nahreman Issa, “for being an absolute pro.”

Who is Jessica Robb? Age and education of Canadian TV journalist

Robb has been a multimedia journalist with CTV News since December 2021, meaning she just recently celebrated her first full year with the station.

She studied communications and journalism at MacEwan University in Edmonton, Canada, from 2015 to 2019, which suggests that Robb’s age, as of early 2023, is either 25 or 26. Most Canadian students start their studies at 18.

MacEwan is a public undergraduate university in Edmonton’s downtown area. While studying there, Robb led a moderated interview with BuzzFeed writer Scaachi Koul as part of the city’s LitFest, per her LinkedIn profile.

She also interned as a content creator at Free Footie; during the summer of 2018 with Modern Muse Media; and for over a year with the Winspear Centre and Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, in the social media department.

What was her first journalism role?

After she graduated in 2019, at the age of 22 or thereabouts, Jessica Robb started working as an editorial assistant for Edmonton’s Global News station.

Two years later, she became a video journalist stationed in Lethbridge, Alberta. She held the position for nearly a year, before returning to Edmonton to work for CTV News as a multimedia journalist.

She describes herself as an “enthusiastic and driven” journalist with a passion for storytelling, visual communication and design. 

Per her bio on the CTV website, Robb was born and raised in Edmonton, and was “thrilled” to return to her hometown after a stint away, “telling the stories that live in the heart of the city.”

What does she do besides work?

Robb is an avid runner, according to the CTV website, and also plays soccer and the guitar. 

She is a dog lover, and “never says no to an oat milk latte.” 

Her Twitter bio describes her as a “plant eater,” which suggests she follows a vegetarian diet, and a “news chaser.”

In recent weeks, she has written articles for the CTV website about immunocompromised children, Edmonton’s decision to celebrate a particular Ukrainian holiday, and an all-girl youth group serving warm meals on Boyle Street.

What has Jessica Robb said about what happened live on air on Sunday?

Following CTV Edmonton’s “programming note,” in which it thanked all those who had reached out to inquire about the health of Jessica Robb, she released a statement of her own, via CTV Edmonton’s Twitter page.

Her Twitter profile has since become private; her tweets are only available to view by those she has accepted as followers.

She wrote (see embed above): “To everyone who has reached out with supportive messages of well wishes and concern, thank you. It’s been overwhelming, and while I can’t get to all the messages, please know I’ve seen them and appreciate every single one.”

“While I will not share private medical information publicly,” she added, “I can say that there is no cause for concern, and that my understanding of my own medical background provides a reasonable explanation for what happened.”

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Bruno Cooke has been a freelance journalist since 2019, primarily with GRV Media. He was an early contributor to The Focus, and has written for HITC, Groundviews and the Sheffield University newspaper – he earned his MA in Global Journalism there in 2021. He’s the Spoken Word Poetry Editor for The Friday Poem, and self-published his debut novel Reveries in 2019, which his mum called both a “fine read” and “excellent Christmas present”. Bruno has lived in China, Sri Lanka and the Philippines and likes, among other things: bicycle touring, black and white Japanese films, pub quizzes, fermentation and baklava. In 2023, Bruno will set off with his partner on a round-the-world cycle.