Being in this class has taught me three things that are vital to further my skills in journalism: preparedness, confidence, and awareness. Without these skills, my journalism career wouldn't be as successful as it has been.
Over these past two years, one of the reasons I feel my interviews for stories have been so successful has been because I was prepared. Having questions written down, remembering all the equipment, and meeting my subject with the necessary skills in order for the interview to go well all contribute to good stories. Being unprepared and unorganized only gets in the way of a story with amazing potential. Planning ahead and being prepared helps a lot with deadlines and almost guarantees a fantastic story.
Let me tell you one thing: before I began BJJTV, I was one of the most shy people you would ever meet. I was intimidated by people I did not know. I hated going into places and not knowing where I was going, but being put in a class that requires meeting new people and going to places all around my community has helped me come out of my shell. I have met so many new, extraordinary people through journalism and I am eternally grateful.
For example, Joyce Brown was one of the subjects for a story I did this year. This woman was one of the most hilarious people I've ever met. She was so full of joy and energy that spreads everywhere she goes. Without this class and my new-found confidence, I would have never met her.
Through the "It Only Takes One" campaign, I have learned so much about the importance of traffic safety. Having issues such as people not buckling up and driving under the influence brought to light on a bigger scale really opened my eyes. I am a bigger advocate than I was before about safety while driving, thanks to Blue Jay Journal TV.
I am so grateful to have the opportunity to be in this class with such amazing peers (and an amazing teacher). I can't wait to see what next year has to offer.
I have high hopes that my journalism skills will increase next year thanks to being accepted into MUJW (the Missouri Urban Journalism Workshop) over the summer.
I've had the time of my life in this class and I'm going to really miss all my amazing friends I've met through this class that are graduating.