Among the lessons I’ve learned and experiences in journalism I’ve had since being on staff at The Pendulum is the ACP/CMA 2011 conference. Having never been to a college media conference before last week, I went into with little more than the knowledge and experiences I’ve gained from being a student at Elon and a staff member of The Pendulum. And I realized that those experiences have already taught me so much.
I attended some great sessions while in Orlando. I attended a few sessions that get the wheels in my head turning when I think about what I can contribute to The Pendulum over the next year. But overall, I felt like so many of the topics being covered and advice being given to the student journalists in attendance at the conference were things we have ingrained in us from being at Elon. Advice about using social media, trying certain writing techniques, impressing a potential employer with your interview and resume and being relentless when trying to get important information from university administration are all important parts of being a successful journalism major. But I felt like Elon has prepared us well by teaching us many of these things already – things that some students in the session seemed to be ingesting as new information. So though we have a lot (really, a lot) of growing to do and some of the sessions I attended pointed out some of those problem areas and how we could grow and improve them, I did get the sense that we are being taught a lot of the right things back at little ol’ Elon. And that gives me confidence about my future in the industry and makes me want to help push The Pendulum to have even more of a distinguished name among college newspapers.