Find what fits

Bryan Wroten

Four years ago, I sat on an old, filth-encrusted sofa in the Stater newsroom in Taylor Hall. It was training, almost a full week before classes started, and I had no idea what the hell was in store for me.

I was a graduate of the Lakewood High School journalism program. In other words, I took the class and wrote for and edited the school news magazine. I started as a features correspondent for the Stater. I quickly realized working for the features section wasn’t a good fit – I only wrote three stories.

The next semester, I went along the visuals route, working as a full-time designer for the Stater. I was slow, fairly uncreative and I knew I was missing the clips I would need for a future career in reporting.

I returned to writing my sophomore year as the minority affairs reporter. I knew little of the intricacies of covering other races and sexualities – I represented the majority of the male students on campus. I approached it as if my sources can help me understand, I can make the rest of the students in the majority understand too. I worked hard, reported honestly and earned the respect and trust of my sources.

It took me a few semesters to figure out what was best for me. Writing and editing news is definitely what I want to do in the future. All it took was a little trial and error.

My point is not to give you the rundown of my entire life at Kent State. You all have better things to do, such as studying for finals week. Most students are here for four or five years. While a short time compared to the rest of your lives, it’s more than enough to see what is out there for you to explore.

College is the time when you are supposed to figure out what you want to do with your life, or at least for a good portion of it. The classes and internships should give you a taste of what it’s like to have that job every day. If you can’t stand it, if it makes you want to throw your notes across the room and run out of class, then you know that field isn’t for you.

Unfortunately, the rising cost of higher education makes the prospect of exploring a few fields seem financially unwise. It’s hard to know what you want out of life when you were a teenager only a few years before. Economics only compounds this problem even more.

So run fast, soak it all in and feel around for what catches you and refuses to let go. There are many opportunities here – take advantage of them while you can. It’s much harder to experiment years after graduation.

You have a few years here. They are for your use and yours alone. Go find what it is that you will love for years to come. It’s your life.

Bryan Wroten is a senior newspaper journalism major and editor of the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].