Ways to Explore Journalistic Writing
If you’re interested in pursuing journalistic writing, you don’t need to wait until college to get started. In fact, exploring different types of writing can help give high school students a headstart for the college admissions process because you’ll develop a better idea of what kind of content you most enjoy writing and how that factors into your college admissions goals
From podcast interviews to publishing a weekly advice column, there are many different ways for students to explore different types of journalism and writing. Keep reading for a few project ideas that can help aspiring journalists learn more about the field and begin to identify the opportunities that interest them most.
Launch a Blog
Whether you’re passionate about fashion or fitness, blog writing can be an excellent opportunity to explore journalism while also writing about something that you are interested in. Take some time to explore different ideas for what you want your blog to cover and the target audience you hope to reach. Once you have a vision for your blog in mind, start exploring different publishing platforms such as Wix and Medium. In addition to fine-tuning your writing skills, starting a blog can help students learn more about photo-editing and web publishing, which are important areas of expertise for those considering a career in digital media.
Start Your Own Podcast
If interviewing is what excites you most about journalism, creating your own podcast can give you real-world experience. Much like starting a blog, it’s important to think about what you want your podcast to cover and the kind of audience you hope to reach. If you’re not already listening to podcasts, select a few to listen to for inspiration. Once you’re ready to begin interviewing, don’t be afraid to start small. Family members and friends can make great interview subjects, especially if you know how to ask the right questions. Brainstorm a list of topics you want to cover and queries to ask, and then get started. Even if your first few interviews feel a little awkward, learning how to listen to and engage with your subject is a crucial skill that aspiring journalists need to hone.
Look for an Internship
Don’t forget to search for opportunities in your community as well. Whether you write for a local newspaper or create content for one of your favorite websites, do some research to see if there are any internship positions that align with your interests and goals. If you’re having a hard time finding opportunities, consider reaching out to your high school English teacher for recommendations.
Get Your Work Published
Whether it’s seeing your name in print or getting your first byline, many journalists are eager to get their work published. If this is one of your goals, it’s important to do your research and create a plan of action. Working with a mentor can also be beneficial because they can give you feedback on your journalistic writing and identify actions you can take to bring your work to the next level. Start by identifying a few target publications you’re interested in and reading as much of their content as possible to get a feel for what they are looking for. Once you have a draft that you’re proud of, don’t be afraid to send it out. While rejections can be disappointing, they are also something that every journalist deals with, so don’t get discouraged if your work isn’t published right away.
Journalism or writing can be an exciting career path for students, particularly for those with a love of language and an ongoing sense of curiosity. If you’re getting ready to apply to college and looking for journalistic writing programs, our team of admissions experts can help you identify your best-fit opportunities.