ConversationPrepare For A Career In Journalism: Narrator: Listen to a conversation between a student and his faculty advisor. Advisor: Hi, Steve, I scheduled this appointment because it's been a while since we touched base. Student: I know, I've been really busy. A friend of mine works on the school paper. He asked me if I'd like to try reporting. So I did and I really love it. Advisor: Hey, that sounds great! Student: Yeah, the first article I wrote, it was a profile of the chemistry professor, the one who was named "Teacher of the Year". My article ran on the front page! When I saw my name, I mean, my byline in print, I was hooked. Now I know this is what I want to do: be a reporter. Advisor: Isn't it great to discover something that you really enjoy? And I read the article, too. It was very good. Student: To be honest, the article got lots of editing. In fact, I barely recognize a couple of paragraphs. But the editor explained why the changes were made. I learned a lot, and my second article didn't need nearly as many changes. Advisor: Sounds like you've got a real knack for this. Student: Yeah! Anyway, I'm glad you schedule this meeting because I want to change my major to Journalism now. Advisor: Um, the university doesn't offer a major in Journalism. Student: Oh, No! Advisor: But.. Student: I mean, should I transfer to another school? Or major in English? Advisor: Wait a minute! Let me explain why the major isn't offered. Editors at newspapers, editors, I mean, when you apply for a reporting job, editors look at two things: they want to see clips, you know, some of your published articles; they'll also want you to try out. They'll give you an assignment like, um, covering a press conference or some other event, then see if you can craft a story about it accurately, on deadline. Student: So they don't even look at my major? Advisor: It's not that they don't look at it; it's, well, having a degree in something other than Journalism should actually work to your advantage. Student: How? Advisor: Most journalists specialize these days. They only write about science, or business, or technology, for example. Is there a type of reporting you think you might like to specialize in? Student: Well, I think it'd be really cool to cover the Supreme Court. I mean, their decisions affect so many people. Advisor: Well, that's really a goal worth striving for. So why not continue majoring in Political Science? And as electives, you could take some pre-law classes, like Constitutional Law. And as for your work on the student newspaper, maybe they'll let you cover some local court cases, ones that students and professors here would want to read about? Student: Do you know of any? Advisor: Well, I do, actually. There's a case involving this computer software program that one of our professors wrote. The District Court's deciding if the university's entitled to any of the professor's profits. Student: Wow! I'll definitely follow up on that!