Even if you don’t feel drawn to journalism, there are many benefits to joining your school newspaper. Whether in high school or college, a student newspaper provides an excellent experience, a sense of community, and unique opportunities to develop real-life skills.
Strengthen Your Writing
One of the most natural benefits of joining a school newspaper is that your writing skills will be put to the test. Because much of journalism is communications-based, you will be writing multiple times a week, jotting down notes, and composing new articles. With writing, one of the best things to do to improve is to practice, and joining a school newspaper provides an opportunity to hone your skills.
Make Lasting Connections
Joining a school newspaper provides an opportunity for students to make new friends, bond over shared interests, and motivate one another. Student journalists are often incredibly self-motivated and passionate, and being in an environment with such people can be infectious.
Beyond these friendships, students can also stand to build rapport with faculty members. You may connect with the newspaper’s advisor to learn more about journalism, their experiences, and the professional benefits of participating in the group. Additionally, you may conduct interviews with other staff members, build your web of connections, and demonstrate your professionalism to individuals you might not have met otherwise.
Develop Professional Skills
In a newsroom environment, students will organically learn and develop skills to serve them well in any career. From collaboration and communication skills to more technical aspects like writing, editing, layout design, and interviewing, a student newspaper naturally encourages developing these skills through experience.
Gain A Broader Worldview
Even if you are only reporting on school events or local happenings, getting involved in journalism means opening your eyes to things that exist beyond your immediate sphere of connections and influence. Through interviews and observations, young journalists learn how to be more empathetic, open-minded, and objective. With a society that is becoming increasingly diverse and globally focused, these traits are crucial in any field.
The benefits of getting involved with your school newspaper are numerous. If you have any interest in writing or journalism, looking into your school’s publication(s) will be worth your time.