In this digital age, as we are so often re- minded, we communicate less and less verbally. It has become common for people to communicate in written form, be it through text message, email or instant messaging.
However, this is not only a social phenomenon but a business one as well. When applying for a job, in most cases, the employer’s first impression of you is through your cover letter and résumé. How you communicate in writing is integral to obtaining the next step in the hiring process.
Furthermore, many business communiqués take place through email or other written correspondence. In sum, writing is an essential part of both our social lives and our business lives and if we want to excel in either area, it’s important to excel at writing. And there’s no better way to improve written communication than through journalism.
Print and online journalism strives to disseminate information to readers. This information can be local, national or inter- national news; theatre, book, restaurant, food or music review; fashion, culture or human-interest narrative, opinion, game reporting and much more. In essence, no matter the subject, print journalists inform through writing.
In order to be successful at this job, journalists must write clearly and concisely: skills which are also required when writing in a social or business milieu.
Concordia’s two independent newspapers will be looking for new staff for the 2014-2015 publishing year. The Link will be holding elections for it’s editorial board while The Concordian is accepting applications for its hiring process.
Whether or not you are a journalism student, working with one of the university’s newspapers is an excellent opportunity to sharpen your writing skills for real life applications.
Not only do writers get practice with written communication but they learn how to gather information through interviews and research and then disseminate that in- formation through structured writing.
Editors have the opportunity to gain leadership and management skills as they are responsible for providing writers with guidance and managing the articles and media in their sections. Additionally, communication with writers is usually done through email and is therefore an excellent opportunity for individuals to practice relaying instructions in written form.
As a writer or editor at a newspaper, whether you are communicating with staff members or writing an article, it is essential to take the tone of one’s writing into account. Very often in social communication we forget that the words we choose and the way we phrase our words convey a tone of voice. If we’re not careful our words can convey the wrong impression to the reader. This is another skill that writers and editors will get to exercise.
It may be redundant to say, but university is all about learning. Outside of the classroom, the university environment provides many opportunities for learning and practicing skills and the student newspapers are one such setting.
Whether or not you have any interest in pursuing a job as a writing professional you can only benefit from writing for a student newspaper. In any discipline, having “writer” as a credit on your résumé is an asset that comes with a skill set that will last you the rest of your life.
Whatever your area of interest, whatever your level of experience, consider applying to write or edit for The Concordian or The Link. You won’t regret it.
For more information on how to get involved or apply at The Concordian contact editor@theconcordian and see our hiring ad in this issue and online.