An amalgamation of Business Economics and Journalism
What were some of the high school experiences you think have prepared you for college life in terms of helping you choose your majors and adapt to new environments?
The extracurriculars I dedicated the most time to in high school were the student newspaper and the varsity baseball team. I served as the Sports Editor and later the Editor-in-chief of the newspaper. I was a captain of the baseball team during my junior and senior years. I also played guitar in a band that won a few regional music awards.
What were you looking for in a college? Why did you choose to attend Beloit College?
I hoped to attend a competitive college that offered strong business and journalism programs; I also preferred a small school as opposed to a large state school. Beloit College seemed to fit those parameters. When I saw a potential job opportunity with the Beloit Sky Carp, a minor league baseball team, that sealed the deal. Beloit’s generous financial package also played a crucial role in my decision to attend college.
What are your majors and minors? When did you declare each of these?
I majored in Business Economics with a minor in Journalism. I declared both during the first semester of my freshman year at the major/minor fair, which was the earliest possible date a first-year student could declare at the time.
Mentioning your experience at Beloit College, what were the most important milestones you have attained?
My most significant achievement was being a part of The Round Table student newspaper, an extracurricular that I think ended up being as important as any class I took at Beloit. I joined the team as a staff writer at the beginning of my freshman year and the next semester became a news editor. The experience I had with The Round Table was beyond my expectations. It not only paved the way for my career in journalism by boosting my professional writing skills, but it also introduced me to the amazing co-workers that I had the pleasure of working with over my time at Beloit (Dianne Lugo’19, Will Tomer’17, and Xavier Ward’16).
Could you share a bit more about your experience with the Round Table newspaper?
I continued working as the news editor for the Round Table newspaper. I also brought my writing skills to support other students by working as the Writing Tutor for most of my time at Beloit, starting from my sophomore year. The sophomore year marked my first achievement within the journalism field - I won the Joseph P. Kobylka Endowed Scholarship in Journalism.
You mentioned that journalism has been the career pathway you wanted to pursue further. So, how was your intended career pathway connected with your other major - the Business Economics one?
I had been planning to double major in business and journalism wherever I went; however, Beloit did not offer a journalism major during my time there, so the next-closest option was majoring in Business Economics with a Journalism minor. Coming out of high school, I was debating to major either in sport management or journalism-related fields. However, there was one thing I know for sure having an economics/business background would be valuable and helpful regardless of the major I would choose. And I got my point proven. Even though I am currently working in journalism, having a business mindset and knowledge has been worthwhile. It got me into a niche pathway which is business journalism.
Who (faculty, staff, coaches, friends, etc.) was instrumental in helping you pursue your journalism career journey?
The Round Table newspaper was the base for me to train my skills in journalism. I became the Editor-in-chief in my junior year. Along with the Round Table newspaper staff, my journalism advisor, Professor Shawn Gillen, was instrumental in helping me make the most of my experience at Beloit. He recommended I pursue my study off-campus for one semester in Washington D.C. in my junior year, which led to an important journalism internship for me. I interned at the National Press Club with Robert Weiner Associates (RWA), a group of columnists that publishes editorial pieces in major publications in the U.S. and around the world.
How did Beloit College support you to pursue your career pathway and prepare you for your post-college experience?
By the time of my graduation, I had already worked three jobs/internships in my intended field. I don’t think I would have received such invaluable experience or been able to build such a resume at any other school. I was also honored to add my last college achievement, the Glenn E. and Marguerite C. Hansen Excellence in Journalism Award, to my final resume.
Besides the Round Table newspaper experience and the internship in D.C., could you share with us the other experience that helped prepare you for your journalism career pathway?
Another experience I have mentioned was my first “real” job at Beloit Sky Carp, where I even started working prior to physically attending Beloit and continued to work for all 4 years at Beloit. I started as an intern, but by my second term (the summer after my freshman year), I worked as a part-time employee before becoming a full-time front-office worker by the time of my graduation. With Beloit Sky Carp, I had a chance to meet and work with Professor Brian Morello, who was also a member of the board. He eventually became a very influential figure for me as both a student at Beloit and as an employee of the Snappers.
What is your current job? What is your daily work like working in this role?
I’m currently working as the Business Reporter at Garnett USA Today Network-Wisconsin, where I copy edit stories for the Appleton Post-Crescent covering local retail, restaurants, and consumer service businesses in the Fox Cities.
What one piece of advice would you give to current students at Beloit?
I would highly recommend taking advantage of Beloit’s advising/opportunities. Beloit is a small campus, and you should try to get to know your professors/advisors; Beloit faculty love getting to know their students, and odds are some of your professors will have connections. Making as many connections as you can and creating a network will be very helpful later when you’re searching for an internship or job.