Journalism is a dying field, or so I am told almost daily. There is no future in it, no jobs and certainly no money. It’s not only my well-intentioned parents who advise me against pursuing a career in journalism, it is also jaded industry professionals, goodhearted professors and fellow students who believe all the news they will ever need is on Twitter.
Usually when I hear this kind of talk, I laugh it off and joke about my future of thrift shopping and budget dining. But what hurts about these comments is not others’ pessimistic predictions for my future earnings, but the fact that so many people believe that the hallowed art of journalism could actually die.
Yes, with the proliferation of social media it seems that everyone can now report to their family, friends and followers from their own personal platform. But true journalists are distinguishable from the talking heads on your newsfeed. Devoted journalists do not simply report what they see — they report the full breadth of the experience so that the reader can experience it too. They cover locations from war zones to weddings to give their readers an inside look at scenes they may never experience themselves. Real reporters tell stories.
At The Occidental Weekly, we want to tell your story. We want you to open the pages of the paper and see your Occidental experience reflected back at you, perhaps in even more detail than when you experienced it the first time. Yes, this means providing the most timely, accurate information possible on breaking news. It means exposing our school’s weaknesses and celebrating its triumphs. But it also means spending a day with the new neighborhood crew of skateboarders, hearing the stories of Campus Dining employees and even covering the saga of the duck couple inhabiting the fountain.
No story is too big to intimidate The Weekly, or too small to escape its notice. So go ahead and turn on the television or open your Twitter feed if you want a briefing on the day’s events. But when you are ready to hear the true story of life at Occidental— your story — open up a copy of The Weekly.
Emily Shugerman is the editor-in-chief of The Occidental Weekly and a senior politics major. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @eshugerman.