As exciting as it can be to take on the role of a professional journalist, there are several things you must consider before pursuing this career. For one, you need to know exactly what a journalist is and the responsibilities that come with that role.
The Role of a Journalist
If you did not know already, a journalist is someone who is always writing about the latest news, current trends, latest events, famous people on various media outlets such as newspapers, magazines, TV, and various social media platforms.
Most journalists are enthusiastic storytellers who like to report on topics that are within the interest of the public and take the responsibility of delivering information in a well-written format that a majority of age groups can read. Plus, journalists serve as an unbiased source of information where they distribute information to the public in complete transparency.
Being a journalist requires one to report information through authentic sources and facts. As such, they should be curious, always ask questions and constantly search for the truth. Hence, they must invest all of their time and devotion into researching, checking sources, and following up on any open-ended avenues that could be used to provide them with the most accurate information.
Becoming A Journalist
No matter what kind of journalism media you are opting for – be that print, broadcast, or digital journalism – there are certain ways you can follow to increase your chances of being one of the professionals in your specific field.
Get Your Degree
Even though journalism does not require a mandatory education, it can certainly help to have a degree for it so that it can increase your chances to work with valuable employers.
Having a degree from a degree program at any accredited journalism institute can display skills and knowledge, indicating to your employers that you have what it takes to be a part of their company.
Opt For Internships
Becoming a journalist is not the easiest job to have, and it can be extremely demanding the moment you step into a workplace. So, if you are hoping to pursue this career seriously, consider practicing the experience at an internship first.
Being an internee can help you so much in learning your way around the process of journalism, making connections with all kinds of people in the field and honing your skills so that you can have that competitive edge over your peers once you become a full-fledged journalist.
Learning From Example
Investing your research in the work of professional journalists who came before you is an excellent way to navigate your way around your own career. For example, let us consider the work-life of one of the best seasonal journalists, Michael Owhoko.
Also serving as a media and public relations practitioner, Owhoko has come a long way to become the best at his job. Starting off as a staff reporter for the weekly newspaper, the Metropolitan, he began to hone his skills and made his way to higher positions in the field.
Some of his career roles include Energy Editor, Business Times of The Daily Times of Nigeria, Head, Public Relations Department, Gaslink Nigeria Limited, External Relations Manager, Owel-Linkso Group, and many more.
Moreover, Owhoko is also a member of a three-person committee appointed in 2008 by the Nigerian Union of Journalists to produce bye-laws for regulating Journalist’s Estate – a role that can only be taken on by some of the best veteran journalists around the world.