Writing for HYPE offers opportunities that are invaluable to my career pursuits, and unless I make the effort to step back, recognize and appreciate these opportunities, they can very easily pass by without notice, dismissed as just “another part of the job,” so to speak.
I recently experienced one of these opportunities.
Last week, Dr. Tyrone Bledsoe, CEO and Founder of the Student African American Brotherhood, or SAAB, visited our campus as one of the final steps in establishing a CWU chapter of the national organization. In the days and weeks leading up to his visit I was tasked with writing the press materials to publicize the event. This included a feature story for our local newspaper, which inherently required an interview with Dr. Bledsoe.
This is not the first high-profile phone interview I’ve conducted, but it was certainly unique in an important way: it went very well. The back-and-forth exchange was straightforward and professional, Dr. Bledsoe gave me one fantastic quote after another and the article essentially wrote itself before my eyes.
This is not to say that past interviews I’ve conducted had gone poorly, but rather they have cumulatively added to my skills and abilities as a professional writer. “Practice makes perfect” (as the old adage goes) is a false statement. “Perfect” does not exist. Practice does, however, make “better.”
I can feel my writing improve. I can recognize my skills as an interviewer evolve. I am establishing a level of comfort in my objective reporting that is absolutely essential to one’s success in the world of media writing. I am thankful for my job and the supplemental effect it has on my education. Similar to an internship, my job is preparing me for the “real world” of the media before I get there, and I feel that this preparation will be my separation from the pack.
So thank you, HYPE. Thanks for the opportunities.