Being a multi-media journalist in a time of change

Photo courtesy of Jessica Pace| CIGAR | Jessica Pace interned with Channel 12 News over the summer of 2017

Life as a student multimedia journalist; where do I begin?

As a kid, I always looked forward to watching my local news station every sunday with my dad. I found it so intriguing to learn about what was going on in a world that never stopped spinning. I fell in love with the idea of producing, writing and shooting your own story to tell. Whether I’m in front or behind the camera, there was and still is no doubt that the news world was for me.

Broadcast journalism is where I thrive. I love to produce content that the University deserves to know, meeting new people, learning about my surroundings and better yet, doing a job that made me feel whole and genuinely happy. Though I thrive in this setting, it wasn’t always easy. When you go out to get an interview with a camera, most of the time people will turn away from you. They’re scared of being part of the “fake news.” If you see me on campus with a camera, don’t be shy, say hi!

As a journalist you need to socialize. It’s not about the interview questions, it’s about the conversation and connection you make with a person. I’m not here to interrogate you or to make you look bad. I’m here to ask for your personal truths and thoughts. Your opinion matters so much to me, that’s why I choose to tell your story.

Life as a student multimedia journalist, in short, is non-stop work. Picking journalism as your major, whether it be broadcast or print, you will write, stare at your computer screen and edit until you’re blue in the face.

“I’m not here to interrogate you or to make
you look bad. I’m here to ask for your personal
truths and thoughts. Your opinion matters so much
to me, that’s why I choose to tell your story.”
– Jessica Pace, The Good Five Cent Cigar Video Editor and Journalism major

Recently I feel like I’ve become a mom to the journalism world at URI. Whoever tears it down, you know I’m the first one to speak up for it. I do this because I’m always busy putting 110 percent into everything I do. You need to be so busy that you feel like you are working five different jobs, if you’re doing the whole “journalism” thing the right way. I currently produce and edit the 5 Cent Cigar Newscast, write an article for the newspaper, manage and work with a group of 8 other MMJ’s under me, write my own news broadcast stories(packages), help other reporters with their packages, meet deadlines, come up with story ideas for others and brainstorm how to make this newscast the next best thing on campus. I’ve had 3 internships that taught me all that I know. Get all the experience you can. That’s what journalism is – experience.

Majoring in journalism comes with plenty of late nights, endless editing, event attendance and scheduled interviews in the time you have a second to breathe between college fun and school. But the satisfaction of putting so much work into a piece and seeing people relate or learn something new is always an unexplainable rush. This path of broadcast has brought me to a better understanding of the world we live in and of myself.

When I voice my plans of a career in journalism, I always received the forced smiles. I also got the, “You know the media is dying, right?” When you feel stressed enough about the upcoming year, hearing these things from people around you doesn’t help. I had a professor tell me I wouldn’t get an internship as a sophomore because I had no experience; I proved her wrong. I had the head of my school tell me there would be no newscast for the year; I made sure to turn that issue around. Being a multimedia journalist student comes with commitment and drive. Never take no for an answer when you have a dream that motivates you to be the best version of yourself. The people who know your passions will allow you to shine in your experience.

My final word of advice is when it comes to any job you’re passionate for: Do something now that your future self will thank you for. I would like to thank Margeaux for the perseverance and long nights, Maddy for the support since the upbringing of the newcast and Niki for the creativity and drive. Sometimes I think, “wow, it’s because of us that everyone is informed.” Here’s to future video editors that will gain the invaluable experience this newscast has brought me.