I went into CreComm to work in PR. This is no secret. I only switched from public relations to journalism within the last couple of weeks.
Many people are curious about why I made the switch and the answer is: to me, it felt right.
On my recent trip to Ghana, people were very curious on why I was there. I constantly got asked my profession, how long I was there for and the purpose of my trip. I would always answer the same:
“I am a journalist who has a summer internship at Radio Maxx in Takoradi.”
After saying this over and over again, I realized how proud I was to say, ‘I am a journalist.’
It was then that I realized it would be weird for me to NOT be a journalist. Not to want to ask questions about everything I saw. Not to want to tell the stories of people who I met. Not to want to dig deeper into the story.
I no longer want to be a journalist. I simply am a journalist. Maybe not a famous or highly-esteemed journalist but still, a journalist.
When I was travelling, there was a couple of different times where I would be talking to someone about themselves and the conversation would switch to me:
‘What do you do?”
“I am a journalist.”
“Oh, that’s why you ask so many questions.”
I am a curious person. I want to talk to people. I want the inside scoop. I am now the person that will go to a concert and think to myself, I wonder if they would do an interview with me after the show? And, they did.
I have met many inspire people in my life. Some where journalists who made me see what I could accomplish in my life. Others were people who I wanted to tell others about because I knew they had the power to inspire even more people.
Journalism is changing but I believe the fundamentals are still the same. It is about connecting the reader to the story and telling them something that needs to be told. Of course, ‘what needs to be told’ is bias towards the writer but there is still that thought that if we do not keep a record of what is happening, we will forget.
I guess I am not really answering the question “What is journalism?”, but sharing experiences that have led me to consider myself a journalist. I have gotten to write about things that are extremely important to me: education in a refugee camp, how resources affect the disenfranchised and even the adventures of my life.
I think that the answer to the question of “what is journalism?” is simply another question: “If no one tells the story, did it even happen?”