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ACP | Meeting others who strive for the perfect paper

College campuses from across the nation gather for the Associate Collegiate Press Conference.  Here, college publications can educate themselves on ways to improve their publications, receive tips from professionals on how to increase their skills as journalists and network with other college students to find what works best for them to get news to their campus.

As a student thinking of a potential career in journalism, I find these panels to be extremely helpful.  What I found most helpful, though, was speaking with other students.  I’m not one who usually enjoys jumping in with new people who I don’t know, but having a Round Table discussion with students from places ranging from Claremont to Minnesota felt comfortable to me.

We got the opportunity to spend a mere fifty minutes discussing what issues we run into in our pursuit of giving our schools, both students and faculty, the most accurate news possible.  These other students — colleagues if I’m being bold — encounter many of the same issues I have run into as the Chief News Editor for The Campanil.  They’ve been met with administrators who refuse to give out information and be transparent with the students, who pay thousands of dollars to attend that institution, with people who don’t want to talk because they’ve been misquoted in the past and a variety of other challenges journalists face.

While this could seem discouraging to me that no one is always able to get information to make their stories the best they can be, it also gave me some comfort.  It made me realize that my friends and I in the Mills’ newsroom aren’t the only ones who deal with such issues.  It made me see I’m not the only one who is an editor who also struggles with design.  It made me see there are students out there just as committed to creating the perfect publication as we are at The Campanil.

It’s this that gives me confidence to possibly make my life about being a journalist.  It gives me more confidence as a writer and editor, and it certainly makes it feel like I’m not so alone.