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QUOTED: Advice for journalism students from communication pros

May 14, 2010

A couple weeks ago, before I made a trip over to Central Washington University to talk to some journalism students, I asked people in my social stream to offer their best career advice. I got some great responses and wanted to post my favorites in one place:

As a fellow J-School grad my advice to students is to not limit yourself. Your skill set as a writer is valuable in so many different areas of business. Since graduating in 2006 I’ve worked in Corporate Communications for a Fortune 500 company and at my own startup where I focus on Marketing/PR. Being a good writer has really helped me in both of these worlds. There’s a lot of opportunity out there if you’re willing to broaden your horizons. —Ryan Paugh, Co-founder and community manager for Brazen Careerist

…they should write for their audience and the medium, not for AP or other journos. —Greg Linch, news innovation manager for Publish 2

My advice: Don’t stop learning. Be inquisitive. Learn how to write and spell. Be able to do more than one thing well. —Curt Milton, founder/lead blogger for Eastlake Ave.; former web producer for the Seattle P-I

I would advise them to think entrepreneurially and develop business and tech sense. The business models around journalism must be re-invented to survive and this will fall on them: [link] —Tariq West, web developer/Stanford student/ex-Microsoftie/more

Lastly, this isn’t exactly advice, but when I Tweeted that I was talking to a class of CWU students, Robert Hernandez @ replied a quick hello. I’m not one to name-drop, but Robert is a former Yakima Herald-Republic intern—a title many Central students (including myself) have held over the years—and is (I think) among new media journalism’s elite. He’s an assistant professor at USC Annenberg, founder of #wjchat (a weekly Twitter chat for new media journalists) and…well, go check out his bio—he’s well credentialed. The point is, the center of Washington state can seem like it’s a long way from civilization and a lucrative career sometimes, but Robert is proof that it all depends on what you make of it.

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