What’s Next for Me: Lessons Learned and Moving Forward

This semester has flown by quicker than the previous on where I was off living an adventure in Europe, where every day my biggest concern was deciding where to go get tapas or planning weekend trips.

Adventures in Europe: The Colosseum-Rome, Italy

I thought that those five months flew by quickly then I got to this semester where it honestly feels like I just started class two weeks ago.

Transitioning back into an American lifestyle not only included getting reacquainted with a more rigorous class schedule, but also getting used to my double life as a student by day and reporter by night. However, I am grateful for this class, Com 265, because it kickstarted my motivation as a journalist and taught me lessons as I move on with my life. I have one more semester as a college student then I am moving on to the real world, and although the thought is scary, it’s also exciting after taking a course that was able to help me recognize my goals.

  • Overall, what lessons have you learned?
    • Going into this course, I thought of it as more about refining and refreshing my journalism skills rather than learning new things, but I did both. I learned to approach each story from different perspectives and angles.
      • Through in class activities like how we would cover tragedies like Columbine or 9/11, or writing a feature about Julia Evelsizer, it opened my mind to the different possibilities of writing a story and learning a new story to tell.

        Photo courtesy of scriptmag.com
    • Combined with the other communication courses that I took this semester, I also looked into my field from an ethical standpoint. It’s easy to get lost and wrapped up in wanting such a good story that ethics can be thrown out the window.
      • Through building my own code of ethics, it instilled rules in my head that I must always follow when covering events and interviewing for the sake of building a reputation for myself but also maintaining the image of any news outlet that I would work for.
  • What would you like to improve upon in terms of your journalism skills?
    • I need to improve my interviewing skills. Sometimes it feels awkward to go out and ask someone for an interview so I need to get more comfortable around people to be able to conduct a successful interview. Another thing is asking better questions that go more in depth about the story to add more detail and description in my stories.
  • What are you most proud of in terms of your journalism skills and the work you have submitted for this class?
    • I’m proud of what my group was able to accomplish in terms of reporting about the apartment companies on campus. I feel like we were able to tell many sides to one story by talking to students about their experiences with realty companies, but also allowing the realty companies to telling their side of how their companies operate and why they have certain leases and certain clauses and policies in their leases.
    • For me, it finally felt like my writing was important to someone and that only pushed me into writing even more stories. I was really proud of my second and third stories; the second one about subleasing and the third one about alternative housing.

      Photo courtesy of realityofrealty.strikingly.com
    • For the subleasing story, I was happy that I was able to talk about something that a lot of students are frustrated about, but also get in the minds of the realty companies and ask the questions that many have been asking as well. One of those questions being, why don’t companies offer shorter leases or why don’t they offer more help when it comes to finding sub-letters.
    • I was also happy with my alternative housing story because the topic was very different than the other content offered on our website. While those stories focused on apartment living, the alternative housing story offered a whole new perspective and would allow students to think about the many options they have besides signing leases.

      Photo courtesy of realityofrealty.wordpress.com
  • What inspires you to write and share your writing with others?
    • Knowing that I have a story to tell. Whether it is through my creative work or reporting, I write and share it with others with the knowledge that I am giving someone a voice. I feel like writing in general can start conversations and inspire change and I want my writing to be able to impact someone down the line.

      Photo courtesy of theroadlesswritten.com
  • List at least 3 things that you will either begin to do or continue to do in order to enhance your journalism skills. Why do you see these things being important to your future growth?
    • I think that I want to continue this blog so that I get in the habit of writing daily and become more disciplined about time constraints.
    • Reporting more and seeing if I can do an internship with our newspaper, The Vidette, and also look beyond that to local newspapers for internship opportunities

      Photo courtesy of kristenwegrzyn.wordpress.com
    • Getting outside of my comfort zone. I am a very shy person so approaching people for interviews is something that hinders me a lot, so by putting these strategies together, it will force me to be more comfortable with putting myself out there.
  • What concerns, if any, do you have about embarking on a career as a journalist and/or a career in the communication field in general? What actions can you take to alleviate these concerns?
    • One of my biggest concerns is finding my fit because this field is so broad and extends beyond newspapers so I think it will be hard coming out of college to find a job that will make me happy and satisfied. And another natural concern is finding a job after I graduate.
    • For me, I’ve always worried about my experience in the field so I constantly wonder if I have enough experience or if there’s something more that I can be doing to prepare myself for a “grown up” career.
    • In order to alleviate these concerns, I think it’s all about staying organized while keeping an open mind. It’s important to keep my options because I could end up anywhere, but it’s also important to stay organized and have goals. Placeholder Image
      • Since the beginning of college, I’ve kept an excel sheet of my goals so I’ve had an image of where I wanted to be at this point in my college career than I have goals extending to five years after and ten years after college. Staying motivated is what helps me feel accomplished instead of full of anxiety.

        Photo courtesy of theinnerskinnyinme.wordpress.com



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