Tuesday, March 01, 2005

So, any suggestions?

I've had some difficulty adjusting to being back in school after spending last semester interning full time in Washinton. I'm finished with all my journalism classes, so I'm stuck in Gambrell Hall most of the day trying to satisfy my political science minor, while I daydream about the District and tell people how sometimes the Coliseum and the Strom Thurmond Fitness and Wellness Center remind me of Washington architecture. It's sick.
But last week I made a trip down to the J-School to sign up for senior semester and had the pleasure of hearing some magic words: "That's all you need to graduate."
So now, I wonder if I'd be better off trying to jump into the job market next December or staying in school through next spring to get some more education and experience. I'm here on a scholarship, and my family is supportive of my staying in school. But I wonder if getting out a few months ahead of the crowd will put me ahead in the job hunt . . . And I like reporting better than taking classes. I've come to appreciate journalism so much, because covering stories is the best education. In no class will thousands of people -- potentially with more knowledge on the subject than you have -- scrutinize your papers and hold you responsible for any inaccuracy. But that's the pressure and the power behind the trade, and that's why we can trust it.

I haven't posted lately, but I started freelancing for the Real Estate section of The State. I had to do some reading before I jumped into any reporting, but my first story ran Sunday. I was thrilled to get the work but unsure if I'd enjoy the beat. I'm working on my third story now, and I've loved it so far. Though I've only had positive experiences, I've been warned that real estate agents are like politicians. And hey, maybe that's why I like it so much.

2 Comments:

Blogger Doug Fisher said...

Given your experience, I'm not sure staying around school would be all that beneficial unless there is a specific area in which you know you need or want to learn more. The December job market is a little less crowded, and if something does not surface immediately, it usually does within a short time as the spring hiring season blossoms -- and you're ready and waiting. I was a December grad, so I speak from some experience.

1:21 AM  
Blogger From Columbia said...

Allyson, I agree with Doug. I believe newspapers establish their staff budgets in late October and November in preparation for the new fiscal year beginning in January. December might be a good time to be graduating, if editors are looking to fill slots at the first of the year.

Some students view more schooling -- particularly graduate school -- as an option if the market is tight. That's not the best reason to go to grad school and incur more debt. Students who are unprepared for the job market might consider this path but this in no way applies to someone with your talent and breadth of experience.

Professor Wiggins

6:33 AM  

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