For those of you who don't know, MUJW stands for the Missouri Urban Journalism Workshop. I went through an application process and ended up being selected along with 40 other applicants. One being Molly Eckelkamp. We have been in BJJTV together for three years now!
MUJW participants were from all over the country. We even had one girl from Costa Rica! I would be spending one week with all of these people who share a love for journalism. I didn't know what to expect, would everyone be friendly? Super competitive? More experienced than me? I wasn't sure of how it was all going to pan out. When my mom and dad dropped me off that morning, I was teary eyed and nervous as can be.
Once I met my roommate and got to know a few of the kids a little better, I was feeling so much more positive about the week. Speaking of my roommate, she was the best, I'm so lucky to have been randomly matched with someone who clicked with my personality! I also ended up finding a few other people that I loved being around. We had so much fun getting to know each other and hanging out during our free time!
After my nerves were out of the way, I was ready to learn and soak up all of the information I possibly could. We listened to speakers who all had helpful advice about journalism and life. I don't think there was one lecture I walked out of without a notebook page or two filled with tips.
MUJW decided to do things a little differently this year. We were split into teams of 4 to work on a project that we would present at the end of the week. My team was great and we were able to finish our project with ease and very little stress. Some of that was due to our ability to work out problems as a team successfully. We also had the help of a great mentor to guide us along. We created a package about technological advancements in the classroom and the effects of such. Our package has both print and video compenents.
Before I knew it, those six days were over. We were all dreading saying goodbye. We sat together through the end ceremony. As parents started to show up, eager to see us and eager to have us home. I definitely let out a few tears. As I walked to my mom's car, I understood that there is a chance I won't get to see some of the people I had grown close to that week again. I was in a weird mood and felt conflicting emotions. I was sad to go, but also excited to be home.
I think back to those six days at Mizzou often and I cannot thank those enough who helped me along the way. I am thankful for friends, family, and teachers who helped me proof my application for mistakes. I am thankful for people who take the time to read blogs like this one. I'm so happy I am able to work on my future doing something I love while still attending high school!
Too often we don't realize that we can find amazing opportunitues like MUJW when we are still in high school. Too often we complain about our situations instead of really understanding NOW is the time to take advantage of what is offered to us. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade! Don't skip out on the countless chances and experiences we are granted with. Trust me when I say that they make you a better person.