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.

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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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To The Teacher Who Was So Much More

Thank you for everything
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I think it's fair to say that most people remember at least one teacher who had a lasting impact on them. I have been incredibly lucky to have several teachers who I will never forget, but one individual takes the cake. So here's to you: thank you for all you have done.

Thank you for teaching me lessons not just in the textbook.

Although you taught a great lecture, class was never just limited to the contents of the course. Debates and somewhat heated conversations would arise between classmates over politics and course material, and you always encouraged open discussion. You embraced the idea of always having an opinion, and always making it be heard, because why waste your voice? You taught me to fight for things I believed in, and to hold my ground in an argument. You taught me to always think of others before doing and speaking. You showed me the power of kindness. Thank you for all the important lessons that may not have been included in the curriculum.

Thank you for believing in me.

Especially in my senior year, you believed in me when other teachers didn't. You showed me just what I could accomplish with a positive and strong attitude. Your unwavering support kept me going, especially when I melted into a puddle of tears weekly in your office. You listened to my stupid complaints, understood my overwhelming stress-induced breakdowns, and told me it was going to be okay. Thank you for always being there for me.

Thank you for inspiring me.

You are the epitome of a role model. Not only are you intelligent and respected, but you have a heart of gold and emit beautiful light where ever you go. You showed me that service to others should not be looked at as a chore, but something to enjoy and find yourself in. And I have found myself in giving back to people, thanks to your spark. Thank you for showing me, and so many students, just how incredible one person can be.

Thank you for changing my life.

Without you, I truly would not be where I am today. As cliche as it sounds, you had such a remarkable impact on me and my outlook on life. Just about a year has passed since my graduation, and I'm grateful to still keep in touch. I hope you understand the impact you have made on me, and on so many other students. You are amazing, and I thank you for all you have done.

Cover Image Credit: Amy Aroune

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Five Tips to Get on Top of Your 2019: Tech Editions

Yeah, there's an app for that.

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Technology is the course of the future, why not use it to get on top of your new year? Make 2019 the year you stop sleeping on these great productivity apps and get grinding! Best part, all the apps I've included here are free.

Google Calendar.

Look at that beauty.

I LOVE Google Calendar! Not only is it a great tool to map out your week, it comes with cool features. You can color code tasks and events, get text reminders and so much more. You can even sync your calendar with other people's (this is very helpful for roommates or study buddies).

Google Doc File Folders

Crying.

Sick of that long list of documents in your Google Docs? You can make file folders to organize all of your docs!

Momentum Chrome Extension

This is by far my favorite productivity app. It's a Chrome extension that acts as a home page whenever you open a new window or tab. It comes complete with the weather, a motivational quote and a to-do list! The best feature is their "main focus for the day". It keeps you grounded for sure- especially when it pops up with every tab and forces you to think about all you need to accomplish.

Wunderlist

This is a to-do list on steroids- definitely worth checking out!

Todist

A to-do list app for your phone! I love this just to organize what my top priorities are.

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