5 Things You NEED To Know Before Becoming A Journalism Major

5 Things You NEED To Know Before Becoming A Journalism Major

True talent and integrity will make one person stand apart from the rest.


There are very few things in this world that I am more passionate about than writing - so passionate, in fact, that I aspire to sculpt a career out of it. Though I am only a sophomore in college, I have already faced an unreasonable amount of trials and tribulations after selecting journalism as my major. I find myself continuously challenged as I pursue new topics to discuss and explore the world of writing from a variety of lenses. Yet, I would not change it for anything. If you are entering college with the consideration of a major in journalism, or are simply intrigued enough by the concept to change your major, I suggest taking note of the following so you may be confident in your decision.

1. There will be people that do not understand or support your journalistic endeavors

As unfortunate as it may be, I have been confronted with the question of how exactly I plan to "make it" in this field numerous times. I have been told that journalism is a dying major, and have been reminded on countless occasions to be mindful of my words due to the rising controversy within this industry. After roughly two years of contemplating these questions, I can safely say that I have crafted the ideal response. I tell those that are doubtful that true talent and integrity will make one person stand apart from the rest. I can only hope to be that one.

2. You may reconsider your choice of major

Due to questioning from others, you will likely experience a time where you reconsider all that you are striving to become in this field. You will compare your pieces to the work of others, feel that your writing is not good enough, and become discouraged by an altogether lack of motivation. I do believe that, if you are passionate about this major, it is not something to simply give up on. Work harder, write stronger and dedicate yourself to your words. The rest will fall into place.

3. You will be forced to discuss topics you find uncomfortable

Whether it is in classes or in the industry itself, it is required of you to discuss topics that may seem unnatural to you. In a similar sense, you may even be asked to write about topics you find irrelevant. Regardless of the subject at hand, I encourage you to engage in a new adventure and share your sincere and honest opinion on the matter. Readers may agree or disagree with your standpoint. Nevertheless, your strength as a writer will increase, and you will feel an overwhelming sense of accomplishment as you leap out of your comfort zone.

4. Deadlines are incredibly real

I am currently enrolled in a news writing class, though my professor has chosen to treat the course as if we are employed at a major company within the industry. We are given deadline upon deadline, some of which occur at rather inconvenient times of the week (yes, I have homework due on Saturday nights). As stressful as this process may be, I find it incredibly helpful in regards to preparation for a job in the real world. Within this major, you will be assigned to cover beats without a prior notice. I have learned to treat this class as if I were an employee because, in the real world, if you fail to meet a deadline, your career may be in jeopardy.

5. Portfolios are EVERYTHING

Whether you are applying for an internship or a job, any form of employment in this industry requires one to have pieces of reference. I believe it is crucial to stay organized and keep a collection of not only your strongest pieces, but all of your writings. After all, the words that may be disregarded by one person may mean the world to another.

I am a firm believer in pursuing what you love. Handle the stress to the best of your ability, for the outcome will be greater than you ever expected.

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8 Things You Should Never Say To An Education Major

"Is your homework just a bunch of coloring?"

Yes, I'm an Education major, and yes, I love it. Your opinion of the field won't change my mind about my future. If you ever happen to come across an Education major, make sure you steer clear of saying these things, or they might hold you in from recess.

1. "Is your homework just a bunch of coloring?"

Um, no, it's not. We write countless lesson plans and units, match standards and objectives, organize activities, differentiate for our students, study educational theories and principles, and write an insane amount of papers on top of all of that. Sometimes we do get to color though and I won't complain about that.

2. "Your major is so easy."

See above. Also, does anyone else pay tuition to have a full-time job during their last semester of college?

3. "It's not fair that you get summers off."

Are you jealous? Honestly though, we won't really get summers off. We'll probably have to find a second job during the summer, we'll need to keep planning, prepping our classroom, and organizing to get ready for the new school year.

4. “That's a good starter job."

Are you serious..? I'm not in this temporarily. This is my career choice and I intend to stick with it and make a difference.

5. “That must be a lot of fun."

Yes, it definitely is fun, but it's also a lot of hard work. We don't play games all day.

6. “Those who can't, teach."

Just ugh. Where would you be without your teachers who taught you everything you know?

7. “So, you're basically a babysitter."

I don't just monitor students, I teach them.

8. “You won't make a lot of money."

Ah yes, I'm well aware, thanks for reminding me. Teachers don't teach because of the salary, they teach because they enjoy working with students and making a positive impact in their lives.

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Calming Music, And 9 Other Study Methods To Prepare College Students For Any Major Exam

When your week gets booked, there are simple ways to help get your mind in the zone.


Making through the first two months of a new semester without breaking down might be considered an accomplishment for college students. If the homework assignments are not as difficult as you originally believed, there should be nothing to worry about. The one major thing that is still considered a pain among college students is exams. The one- or two-page quizzes or long midterms, upon discovering the exact date and time, will send any student into an emotional frenzy. These techniques will help students to overcome the challenges they will face during these terrifying days.

1. Go for a short walk an hour or two before you have a test

Exercise is a great way to distract the mind from stress and improve your memory. It helps if you are walking to get lunch or you are going to the library or another class with someone. Having a conversation with friends about their major and the exam you have that day is beneficial. Talking not only only keeps you focused, but you might learn something from your friends, and they could possibly have advice for you when it comes to preparing for exams.

2. Take frequent 10-minute breaks

When studying for an important test, it is crucial that you take a break after every 45 minutes to an hour of reading or writing something. Even if you are in a study group, leaving to get food, use the bathroom, or just standing up to stretch is good for your mind and body. Make sure the meals you eat are healthy to increase memory retention. Doing a quick 10-minute workout is another method to strengthen your mind.

3. Put on some calming music or perform other small tasks

While studying alone for a midterm or test, putting on soft music while you are reading will help you to stay calm during your study session. When taking a break, doing other activities like cleaning your dorm room, doing yoga, or meditation are other ways to keep your mind focused. Switching up your methods or moving to a place where you can study without any distractions is a priority to achieving success.

4. Watch a Netflix documentary related to the subject

Although television is a distraction from your studies, it might be useful to search on Netflix for an interesting documentary about the exam topic. This is especially great if you are majoring in business, health science, criminal justice, or history. You will hear about all the information related to your test within a few hours. Unlike a lecture, you can pause and leave to get a snack or go to the bathroom without missing anything. As a bonus, if you have to write an essay, you can mention the documentary and reference some facts and other useful information you learned.

5. Make flashcards

One of the best ways to help retain information fast is creating flashcards. Either buy the cards yourself or use a study app. Fill the cards with key terms, facts, essay topic ideas, famous quotes, math problems, or science formulas as something to review (or practice with friends) while studying for an exam.

6. Try making a mind map

If you are having difficulty organizing and summarizing ideas that you have for a topic you are studying, creating a mind map is a unique strategy. Mind maps can be created on paper or by using a computer. This is a simple way to understand material that will be on an exam. Include visuals, words, and ideas, which may help you to remember information.

7. Create a study schedule

During the weeks that students are having midterms, it is challenging trying to balance school and social life. One solution is to make a schedule dedicated to studying for your exams. Mark down on a calendar (or your phone) the times that you have free to study. Putting at least two hours of work a day to prepare for exams will increase your chances of success.

8. Find a secluded place for studying

Another great way to make sure you are retaining the information you are studying is finding a quiet and comfortable area for reading and writing. By relocating yourself to a location you feel relaxed in, the chances of doing better on exams will increase. Make sure that the place is clear of any distractions like televisions, electronic devices (unless you need to use a computer), and loud noises. Some of the best spots can be your dorm room or a reserved spot in the library.

9. Do practice exams

If you want to get in some extra practice for an exam, trying looking on websites or use apps that have quizzes related to your test. Find questions with multiple choice, true or false, short answer, or math problems. Checking your textbook for examples is another good option. This will prepare you for any possible questions that you might see on your exam.

10. Review exam material before going to sleep

When studying for an important exam, try to get some reading done around one or two hours before going to sleep each night. Reading over material or doing some practice questions before going to bed will help you retain information. This is a method known as sleep-learning, and it is effective for college students. While your body is recovering, the brain is processing information during sleep, which means that everything you learned will be stored in your long-term memory.

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