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The department of Media, Communications and Visual Arts at Pace University’s Pleasantville campus offers four majors for undergraduate students: communications, digital cinema and filmmaking, digital journalism and public relations.
Digital journalism is one of the least popular majors offered by the department, and with the fate of print, television and even online news media, changing day to day and new jobs within those areas becoming increasingly more difficult to find, it is no surprise that this is the case.
The journalism major and industry is clearly not for everyone. It is obviously not for people who do not like to write. It is not for people who do not appreciate constructive criticism of their work. It is definitely not for those who expect to find their dream job immediately after they graduate. While that may happen for a few journalism majors, from my experience and observations, the vast majority of them do not get the job that they dreamed of until years, or even decades, after they graduate.
That being said, being a journalism major myself, I can say that even though it may not guarantee steady employment once my tenure at Pace is over, it is one of the most rewarding majors at Pace, and at this point in my life, I cannot imagine myself doing or studying anything else.
One of the biggest rewards, especially in a small and tight-knit community like Pace and Pleasantville, is the ability to serve the community through your reporting and hopefully making a positive impact and change within it as a result. The things that students write and report about, whether for class, a school publication, or just for fun, may have more of a reach and more readership than they might initially think, and a story that they may think is small and unimportant could mean the entire world to whoever may read it.
Another big reward is getting the opportunity to speak with and interview very notable people within the community, county or even state, that they would possibly not have even thought of speaking to before. These people can range from local or county politicians, successful entrepreneurs, and anyone and everyone in between. Having these opportunities gives students who may have previously been very shy and withdrawn a chance to step outside of their comfort zones and come out of their shell a little bit.
There are so many other big and small rewards of being a student journalist that they cannot possibly all be listed here. Because of all these rewards, any student who likes to talk and ask questions, wants to make a positive change, and is open to positive or negative feedback, should at least consider giving journalism and communications a shot. They might be surprised by how much they like it and how much they will learn about themselves during the process.