Last September I was thrown into the world of being a journalism student at the University of Lincoln. And it really did feel like a throw more than a light settling in. Naïvely, I expected that we would do a load of lectures about how to interview and write news stories then later on in life we’d do the actual journalism stuff. We had a few lectures but I didn't feel prepared at all. My first assignment was to write 5 news stories, all with quotes, which meant we had to interview at least 5 people. I’m really not the most confident person so this terrified me. I’ve always known that journalism is all about the talking to people bit but I assumed when I got old enough I’d be more confident. But that didn't happen.
I now realise that the first assignment really helped me massively. Journalism isn’t a subject that you can learn from sitting in lecture theatres. The only real way to learn how to be journalist is to actually do it. So even though it was terrifying, it helped me get a little bit more confident.
The first semester was mainly focusing on news, whereas the second semester is more about magazines and online stuff like blogging. I've always been drawn more towards magazine and online stuff so I think I prefer this semester, but I was surprised at how much I enjoyed writing news stories.
The course at Lincoln is different to others that I looked at because they combine broadcast and print journalism into one course. I've never wanted to work in the broadcast side of journalism but I thought it would be nice to have the option and I've started to really like radio. I’m still not sure about TV, but I think that’s because trying to carry a camera and a tripod up Steep Hill wears me out.
I still have good and bad days with my course but ultimately, I know it's what I want to do. I think if you're questioning your course, just think of the reasons why you started the course and maybe you'll want to stick it out. And if you really hate it, then it's fine to leave and try something else, you've got your whole life!