Saturday, January 31, 2009

A Student Asks Advice on Creating a Narrative for Her Application for Graduate Study in Journalism. She Says She's Never 'Done Anything Remarkable'

I would ‘tell them a story.’ Maybe you don’t have a long list of disconnected ‘brags’ to bombard schools with, but think about some personal experience, or life narrative, that illustrates your passion, your curiosity, your commitment to some of the things a journalist should be committed to. The point is not that you have done a whole bunch of disconnected things, like some over-scheduled high school student trying to brag his/her way into an Ivy League college. The point is that at a moment when a career in journalism takes a real leap of faith because no one knows who will pay you to do journalism , you still are going to embrace it, go for it, follow your heart *and* your mind because society needs journalists – that’s what heart and mind tell you. You see the sacrifices that this moment of crisis in journalism may require. And you are still going to go for it.

And that's remarkable. I think I’ve just made myself cry.

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