5 Reasons to Write for your School Newspaper


If you're a journalism student, you've probably heard that writing for your school newspaper is a great way to hone your writing and editing skills. If you're a business, engineering, or graphic design student, it may not be as clear how writing for your school newspaper can benefit you.

The truth is that regardless of what you are studying in college or university, writing for your school newspaper is beneficial for many reasons. Strong writing skills are important whether you work in an office, need to communicate ideas to clients, or send business emails. Learning how to write different types of articles will help you understand how to write convincingly and effectively, but there is also more to be gained from contributing to your school newspaper than just learning how to write.

1. The chance to meet new and interesting people

Not only will you meet students from other programs at story meetings as well as the writers and editors who run the newspaper, but you will be assigned stories that require you to interview strangers. Although you might feel uncomfortable interviewing strangers at first, if your experience ends up being anything like mine, you will meet interesting people that you never would have met otherwise. The opportunity to interview entrepreneurs, authors, politicians, and regular people with amazing stories is my number one reason for writing for my school newspaper.

2. You will become an expert on the current events you write about

What better way to learn about and understand a topic then to conduct your own research and inform others about what you've learned? Journalists tackle difficult and complicated subjects daily and are then expected to communicate these issues clearly to the general public, often in just 400 - 500 words. You will also have to do this when you write for your school newspaper and as a result, you will accumulate a wealth of knowledge about topics you may have never heard of before.

3. "Contributor" looks great on your resume

For students with little work or volunteer experience, including on your resume that you contribute to your school newspaper is a great way to set yourself apart from your peers because it shows potential employers that you are versatile. Sometimes, possessing good writing and communications skills can be the reason you score the coveted internship or job when there are many applicants. In today's economy, employers are looking to hire people with the "full package" for entry level positions. Knowing how to write, and write well, will only help you when you are up against stiff competition.

4. Fame and glory

Okay, maybe not Hollywood style fame and glory, but it's pretty darn cool the first time you see your name published — and every time after that. It also feels good to post "I'm Published!!" on Facebook and to watch your status receive 20+ likes.

5. It could be a once in a lifetime opportunity

How many times are you going to attend college or university? It's possible more than once. It's my second time around in post-secondary school and I have a number of friends pursuing an additional diploma or degree, but you never know where life will take you. Make the most of your school experience while you can and get involved in as many ways as you can. As a contributor for your school newspaper, you have the important role of helping to create a dialogue among students, your school, and the wider community.

At the end of the day, your school experience is what you make of it. Writing for your school newspaper is just one of many ways to get more out of school than just what is covered in class. But keep in mind next time you pass by a stack of your school's newspapers that you are a student and therefore that's your school newspaper. If you have something to say — write it!



My family brought home Topaz and his sister Sapphire thirteen years ago. We had been looking for a kitten for a few months and I remember when we laid eyes on them — the cutest chocolate-point siamese kittens we'de ever seen— we knew we were done for. They had so much energy and were so excited to have visitors that all of a sudden they would jump up, hook their little claws into our pants, and try to climb all the way up into our arms. We couldn't resist getting both of them.

Topaz turned out to be the goofy one. A little on the larger side, he was very particular about his breakfast, lunch, and dinner. If you were late feeding him, he would howl until you stopped what you were doing and paid attention to him. There's no doubt he was spoiled, but it's because we loved him so much.

His favorite place to be was curled up under a blanket. When the family was all together in the living room, he would prance in and claim his spot in his favorite chair in the corner of the room near the fireplace and one of us would set a blanket over top of him.

Sadly, Topaz passed away suddenly at my parent's house a few days ago. It was heartwrenching and a very hard week for me to get through. Topaz was much more than a cat, he was a little friend I could always count on being there and a member of our family. I will miss him with all my heart.

Gary Doer Talks to Creative Communications Students


Gary Doer speaking to Red River College Creative Communications Students

One of the many reasons I love the Creative Communications program at Red River College is that not a week goes by without a visit from at least one journalist, author, producer, PR professional, media personality, or politician.

On Friday, none other than Canada's ambassador to the United States and former NDP Manitoba premiere, Gary Doer spoke to us about the outcome of the U.S. election, Canada's stance on Iran, and the need for more trade between Canada and the U.S.

Doer was informative and entertaining as he addressed our class, concluding his presentation with a joke about how we would get to watch him play dodgeball with the media.

This was Doer's second visit to Red River College in two years. He also spoke to Creative Communications students in November of 2011. Doer's daughter Emily is a second-year Creative Communications student.

Gary Doer and I


Scrum cont...

Internship at The Projector!


I am very excited to announce that I was chosen for the position of intern news editor of Red River College's newspaper, The Projector!

I am so grateful to have the opportunity to experience The Projector from an editing standpoint and to learn from everyone on The Projector team.

This past Tuesday was my first Projector meeting as news editor, and I had a lot of fun brainstorming story ideas with the full-time news editor, Alana Odegard and the other news intern, Danielle Da Silva.

Over the next few weeks, I will be shadowing Alana and trying to learn as much as I can from her before she leaves on her work-placement, at which time Danielle and I will take over as editors in her absence.

If you are interested in reading The Projector, new issues are published every second Monday and can be picked up at Red River College — or you can contact me and I'll get you copies! You can also visit us online at www.theprojector.ca.

Thanks for your support!

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