I made a very important decision this week.
I, the editor of the Scout, have decided to forgo studying journalism – forever.
Well, maybe not forever, but as of now, I have no future plans in the discipline of journalism.
This is a decision I had to make myself. Although I love to write and I have developed a commitment to news and reporting the truth, I don’t want to commit my life to it.
I came to this conclusion because of many reasons, one being the fact that I want job security.
It may be hard to realize this, but people aren’t reading the news the same way they did in the past. Readership of online news media has increased, while print media’s future looks pretty bleak.
As much as I love working at the Scout, I’m not ready to give up a steady job and paycheck to work for a newspaper.
Since making my decision, I have learned I’m the exception to almost every Scout editor Bradley has seen. Most go into journalism or at least some form of communication.
But my decision about my future isn’t the only thing that sets me apart from other editors.
Believe it or not, I’m an English major (insert surprised gasp here).
Until this week, I had a minor in journalism and felt a connection to the Department of Communication. But now, I’m just some English major who’s running the Scout.
Although I’ve learned a degree in Liberal Arts is invaluable, I get disappointing or questioning stares when people find out a lowly English major is in charge of the Scout.
I understand why people may doubt the newspaper is my area of expertise. But this is my third year doing it, and I can honestly say I haven’t been faced with any competition for any job I’ve held at the Scout.
And I’m not even trained to write in a journalistic style. Before beginning at the Scout, I never wrote for a newspaper or took any journalism classes in high school.
Three years ago, I didn’t know the first thing about reporting, and still got a job on staff.
And even now, as editor, I’ve only completed three journalism classes and will not take anymore.
So why was I, a student with minimal education in journalism, the only one who applied for editor last year?
I don’t think I can answer that question, but I can aim the question toward a group of students – journalism majors.
Here’s another question: Where are all the journalism majors?
I can’t really say I don’t know where you all are. I’ve met some of you. I’ve seen you walking the halls of the Global Communications Center.
But I haven’t seen a lot of you in the Scout office. Why is that?
The Scout is a publication aimed at giving journalism students a chance to experience what it’s like to work at a paper.
How many students can say they have the same kind of opportunity?
With that said, I don’t understand why more of you don’t come out and write for us.
I’ve learned so much about journalism and working with other people that you can’t learn in a classroom or from a textbook.
And reporting on campus issues is exciting and gives you an inside look at what’s going on around you.
So write for us. You don’t have anything to lose.
Not to mention you shouldn’t let an English major one up you.
Sarah Raidbard is an English and Spanish major from Skokie. She is the Scout editor-in-chief.
Direct questions, comments and other responses to firstname.lastname@example.org.