Since elementary school, I have harbored an unquestionable and unconditional love for the written word, be it a spark of inspiration between classes or a report for a class in school. When I realized that there was an opportunity for me to play out my love of writing in a school setting, I took it. Journalism was the next level to which I hoped to take my writing – but over the course of the year, it has become much more.
Journalism has exposed me to the many nooks and crannies of reporting. Since my first class in September, I have not only refined my craft as a writer, but also developed my skills in graphic design by preparing layouts for each page of the magazine. I’ve worked with close friends on articles and spreads, bonding with them over a common passion. I’ve participated in “press conferences,” learned the do’s and don’ts of photography and even picked up countless earworms from the music playing during class.
Few moments are more satisfying than distributing copies of tjTODAY in the hallways, perusing the newly-printed pages – but being part of the creative process to pull those pages together shines a new light on the experience. To see nearly a month of storyboard planning, layout designing and article writing all captured in one piece is so gratifying. The newsmagazine is, somehow, more than a set of 32 pages bound together – it is making last-minute edits to pages before submitting them to be printed, adding and removing articles over the course of the month as schedules change and staying after school with my peers to crank out a new issue. The memories I have made from copy to copy are precious to me and only increase my love for the class and my classmates.
I first entered the classroom as a writer, but I truly feel that in these last few months, I have worked towards becoming a journalist. The lasting friendships I have made, coupled with my exposure to multiple tools of the trade, make my decision to take this class one of the best I have made. Journalism has made this year unbelievably rewarding for me, and I can’t help but smile at the thought of all the layouts and issues yet to come.