My college career has taken a lot of interesting turns over the years. I began as a Mathematics/Secondary Education major, switched to simply Mathematics after one year, and then joined the English department the following year. I found a new love once I joined the English department, though, in a previously thought unlikely place: the Communications department.
A close friend and current The Wood Word managing editor Patrick Kernan had told me of his interest in Communications when he added it as a double major to his English major, and at the time I thought “oh, good for you, you’d like that,” with the presumed rest of the thought being “because you like to write about interesting things.”
By this point, I should’ve asked myself the following: why couldn’t I like such a thing? But I didn’t, and so I had to find my way there by other means.
I began to think of how I could bolster my resume for graduate schools and future employment, and I found that at the top of the list, as an English major, was published work and editing experience. The Wood Word began to feel more like the perfect fit.
One thought led to another, an application and visits to staff meetings followed, and I ultimately began my Communications ventures in the fall 2014 semester as Community Editor, a position I remained in for a year, before becoming Opinion Editor for this fall 2015 – spring 2016 school year. It was a decision I will never regret for several reasons.
Firstly, and in my opinion most importantly, I learned so much about myself and about how to be a professional. Working with an organization that runs as a professional organization on a college campus is an incredible experience everyone ought to gain somehow. I will absolutely be a stronger employee or owner myself in the future.
Secondly, for my career, I have a powerful resume filled with publications, editing experience, InDesign experience, and an inherently listed skill of commitment to excellence. I have received an award for my work, and I continue to find new ways to bolster my resume through podcasts and other features with The Wood Word.
Lastly, it has allowed me to have a tight-knit family on campus I could never have gained otherwise. Some things can’t be duplicated, and I don’t think I’ll ever find a staff quite like them.
This all isn’t to say this whole process didn’t have its hurdles; I’ve been inundated with far too much work before with my schoolwork and extracurricular activities, as The Wood Word for me is really a side interest/hobby, and I initially couldn’t stand the hustle and bustle that came with the newspaper biz.
But, I adjusted and got used to it. I fell in love with the most important part of any serious undertaking: the process. And I’m truly a better student and person for it.
To every English major, and every other major out there, don’t ever restrict yourself. Don’t ever sell yourself short. And don’t ever say “No, I couldn’t do what he/she does,” because you’ll never know until you try. I’m glad I tried something new, and I hope I never lose the itch to keep trying new things.
Contact the writer: firstname.lastname@example.org