With spring break only two days away I now realize why the week in March away from campus incorporates the word “break” into its name. It’s to give all of the overloaded students, including myself, a much-needed week off from exams, schoolwork and the demands of the daily college grind. I have never been so busy than this second semester of my senior year, but I would not have it any other way. The demands are great and the pressure is high but the feeling of gratification at the end will be so worth it.
This semester I have been juggling a number of activities in addition to my schoolwork. One of those being my Journalism Capstone class. In that class we have been spending the semester researching, learning and reporting on the Central Falls, R.I. school system and the mass firings that took place there a few years ago. In addition to that research and reporting we are teaching students from the high school journalism skills and showing them what the college experience is like. When I first signed onto this class I was not really sure how it was going to play out. But I now see that the experience is so much more than just a classroom discussion!
This past Saturday we invited some students from a tenth grade English class at Central Falls High School to come to RWU and learn journalism skills from our capstone class. When I think back to being a tenth grader, college was the last thing on my mind. But these students were so much different. They were so excited to be given a tour of the campus and see a college environment that they could actually envision themselves in. We gave them a campus tour, had them sit through a presentation on basic journalism skills and had lunch with the students. We even took the students out to do interviews and showed them how to interview people as well as shoot video. At the end of the day we wrote a script and taped standups and voice overs of the students so that we could turn their work into a news package. The experience was both gratifying for the high school students as well as us the college students. I never saw myself as a teacher but one thing that I learned from this experience was how much I have learned over my four years here at RWU. I felt as though not only myself but the members of my class were well equipped to answer questions that the students had about journalism. We were putting our knowledge to use and it was such a great feeling knowing that we were enlightening these students who looked up to us and want to be in our shoes one day. As the semester goes on and we continue to work with Central Falls High School, I hope that we continue to learn from them as they learn from us.