Editor Miranda Febus documents journalism experience at Syracuse University workshop


Dear Cat’s Eye View Readers,

Last week I was one of 16 students selected to attend a Diversity in Journalism Workshop at Syracuse University run by The Record. The experience was very enticing overall, as I was able to learn more about the journalism field.

I had to be at The Record’s headquarters at Garret Mountain at 8 a.m., which is early enough as is, but my dad was very nervous about showing up late. Needless to say, I was an hour early.

By the time the other students and I loaded the bus, I was exhausted. I barely stayed awake long enough to be introduced to the chaperones of the trip. Both of the Syracuse University graduates took the time out of their busy schedules as workers for Fortune Magazine to guide us through the campus and make sure we got to each class on time.

The bus ride was long, but I caught up on some sleep that I missed by arriving extra early. After about four extended hours, we finally arrived at the Sheraton Hotel that rests on the campus. I quickly became acquainted with my roommate and the other students.

It only seemed like a few minutes before we were whisked away from our room to the hotel lobby where we met up with our chaperones. We quickly became immersed into the atmosphere of Syracuse, zipping our jackets all the way up and tightening scarves around our necks as we walked to the first activity of the trip.

At the orientation we were able to meet a few deans of the S.I. Newhouse School of Communications and current students, who discussed their schedules and activities they participate in. They then took us on a quick tour of the Newhouse building. photo 5 (1)

After the tour, I attended my first college class. Professor Gallagher taught us how to cover a speaker to prepare us for an assignment. We were asked to write an article based on an interview we observed of Alexis Okeowo, a reporter for The New Yorker and The New York Times.

I did research on Alexis prior to the interview. She spends much of her time focusing on current events abroad. Her adventures in reporting truly inspired me to follow in her footsteps.

Beyond the writing assignment, the rest of the days were similar. I woke up bright and early before going to get breakfast at a dining hall. By the last day, my stomach was fully accustomed to a college meal plan. We went on with the day by attending classes that taught us about graphic design, writing, and futures in journalism. On the last night in Syracuse we went to see the play Stepping Out put on by the drama department.

Also, it snowed. A lot. I braved blizzard-like conditions for the sake of pursuing my passion for journalism. The wind whipped frozen flakes every which way across my face. It did not help that our tour of the campus was scheduled on the coldest day of our visit. Nevertheless, I persevered.

The best experience I had on the trip occurred on Thursday evening. We were invited to a business casual dinner with professors, deans, alumni, and current students of the university. The conversation over dinner made me realize that I would like to pursue a career working with some sort of magazine over any other path in journalism.

I was able to join the college experience for four days during this wonderful opportunity. I had the chance to decide what career I want to choose over all the options I have because of this trip. As extra rewards, I will also be given special recognition for attending this workshop on my application to Syracuse University, and I will be considered for a paid summer internship at The Record, not to toot my own horn or anything.

This trip has excited me for my future and the possibilities. I’m nervous about attending college classes and joining the newspaper staffs and magazine staffs of whatever school I choose to attend. I’m anxious, yet eager. As Alexis Okeowo stated, “It’s just going to be a struggle but it’s worthwhile.”

Yours truly,