One last blog post for J4TW

I’ve really enjoyed taking Journalism for the Web this past semester.

I’ll be honest, I started off with a nervous, gut-wrenching feeling about it. I’d attempted an online class last semester, and dropped out only a few days later. The thought of not having a class to sit in and a face-to-face teacher every day was enough to make me drop it. I told myself to keep an open mind with J4TW, knowing I was going to eventually need to pass this to graduate.

I learned how I should be managing a journalism website, when I should be using social media to benefit my job and how to handle online feedback. I found I gained a new perspective in each week’s instruction.

Thank you, Kyle, for sharing your knowledge and experiences within the field. It’ll serve as a great foundation to build upon during my summer internship.

Changes I made for the semester:

-I made a conscious effort to keep the blog consistent

We were told, in the beginning of the semester, to make the blog something we were passionate about. Luckily, the assignments we were given to write about (Scott Pelley, etc.) matched the content I cared about most. When I chose my topic for the week, I took into consideration what takeaways I’d received from the media industry this week, through my own experiences or listening to others. The writing I did for this blog assisted in my growth from the journalist I was in January to the one I am now.

-I learned how important it is to include art with my blog

Being a photographer, I knew how important having art in a newspaper was – running a blog made me realize how important it is to my online web presence, as well. It led me to consider what kind of web content I should not only be putting on my blog, but my professional Twitter feed as well.

I think my professional Twitter feed is infinitely better because of it.

-I worked to create content that was SEO

This involved me looking at how I could create tags and boost my blog posts on my own WordPress site, but I did this more so with the Royal Purple stories I had to post each week. I wouldn’t let the stories we wrote be published until I got a green light on our Yoast SEO – it was my blog and the rest of the class material that prompted me to do so.

-I added more of my own work to the blog

Layout-wise, my blog didn’t change much. I like the clean, one column design for it, with links on the side. I would have liked to improve it to look more like a news site, but my options for a layout like that were limited. I’ll use those skills I learned with web design to help choose a new layout for the Royal Purple’s website in future semesters.


Saying goodbye…?

We took a photo tonight as the RP editorial staff, minus a few people. This is the decent one. Photo by Amber Levenhagen.

We took a photo tonight as the RP editorial staff, minus a few people. This is the decent one. Photo by Amber Levenhagen.

I’m not a graduating senior, nor am I anywhere near close – I’ve got until December 2018 to figure out how to con a real-life news director into giving me a chance.

So why am I sitting here, on our last night of layouts for the Royal Purple for the semester, getting all sentimental?

A wave of nostalgia has hit me twice today – once this morning as I threw the last rounds of Internet News onto UWW-TV’s a-list for publication, and tonight, as I realized I was laying out the Royal Purple‘s news section in entirety for the last time.

It dawned on me this would be my last time sitting at the news computer, putting together a budget, stressing how I would find time to write my stories for the upcoming week.

It’s stressful, and even though I’ll hopefully receive confirmation of my promotion at the RP at the end of the semester, I’m going to miss it. I accepted the job of News Editor a year ago because as the Photo Editor, I ached to write something.

But as heartbroken as I feel to leave my job as News Editor behind, watching my Assistant News Editor proclaim herself as my successor, this is a fantastic feeling at the same time.

I know at point this makes me sound like a scratched record, or in this age, a corrupted .wav file, but if I’m going to write one last blog for this class, I’m going to use it to encourage you all to go out, join campus media and get your hearts broken.

Your memories will be your first-aid kit.