Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Critical Thinking: J-School Students and Industry Vets Tackle the Tough Questions

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Critical Thinking: J-School Students and Industry Vets Tackle the Tough Questions

Article excerpt

Q: According to this year's Career Cast annual best/worst job list, newspaper reporter is ranked 199 out of 200 occupations. How would you get newspaper reporter to be number one for next year's list?

A: "What do you hope to do after graduation?"

"I want to be a journalist."

"But isn't the newspaper industry dying?"

This is a conversation every journalism student has participated in at some point. Lists like this year's Career Cast annual best/worst job list that ranked newspaper reporter as 199 out of 200 occupations does not help fight these preconceived notions.

The newspaper industry is not dying; it is simply in the process of changing mediums. However, my generation is not an era that has had to pay for online news, nor will we ever really want to pay for something we have always received for free. A journalist had to create that content and should be paid for that content. Though the online medium is growing in profitability, even at its peak online media will never be as financially profitable as print's advertising abundance.

Even still, this does not make journalism one of the worst jobs because it's more than a job; it's a lifestyle. A choice to give voice to the voiceless. The way we produce and consume news is smart, it's new and it's emotional. Multimedia journalism is at the forefront with not only videos and visuals to accompany articles, but also interactive graphics and even virtual reality. This raises the bar for the quality of news and storytelling that is being created among publications.

Journalism will be at the top of the list next year. We are on the verge of an innovative breakthrough, revolutionizing a creative and profitable business model for this adventurous field. There is always something to learn for reporters, some of the most passionate people I have ever met. There will always be a story to tell and there will always be a new way to tell it.

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McGinnes is a journalism major with minors in politics and environmental studies. She has held internships at the Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival, the ABC affiliate station in Boston (WCVB) and the Ithaca Journal. McGinnes was president of the Ithaca College chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists in 2012 when they won "Chapter of the Year. …

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