I have always dreamed of being a journalist; since the age of eight when I had to write an "article" for a class project. I was the kid reading newspapers and watching the news when I woke up. I was convinced that it was my calling.
When it was time to look at colleges, I decided on being a journalism major. I looked at schools with good programs and based my decision on that. The better part of my young life has been based on this notion that I will be a journalist.
Then, Donald Trump happened.
I vividly remember sitting in my AP government class my senior year watching him come down that escalator. I knew of him based on his television show and real estate. Yet, as many people did, I underestimated him and did not expect him to go far.
His anti-media rhetoric is not new, but it is shocking. The notion that any opposition is referred to as "fake news" is terrifying. I have read books about journalists during world war eras who fought to provide the truth. I never thought that the future of journalism would once more have a similar fate.
The treatment of journalists in Trump rallies appalled me. The moments where he would tell the crowd to turn to journalist and yell/boo is something I never thought I would see.
I have been asked if I considered changing my major, multiple times since the election. "The media is liberal" and "it is all fake news" tends to come along with the suggestion to change majors.
Yet, Trump has only encouraged me to continue journalism. I think I can say that for many journalism majors today. We are not entering the field in a peaceful time.
We are still in Iraq and Syria is still semi occupied by ISIS and will need years to recover. The human rights violations in Venezuela are only escalating. North Korea keeps testing missiles and the response by the International Community is mixed. The investigation into Trump's ties to Russia unfold every single day, and this is starting to strike similarities to the "golden days" of journalism.
The reporters who made astonishing progress with early war reporting. The journalists who uncovered Watergate and did intense and credible investigative journalism. This is what I want to accomplish as a journalist. Yes, we are not in a good place right now, but the role of the media is to educate the public on the issues -- in an effort to bring light to injustices and to provide knowledge.
No, I do not think journalism is dead, we are simply going through a rebirth. Journalists are going back to basic, investigative journalism. We are straying from salacious gossip that strikes attention. Instead, we are turning to the hard facts, credible sources and evidence.