Un-Blurring the Line: School to Real Life

Kayla Green—As seniors in high school, we are expected to apply to colleges, pick one to attend, and, arguably hardest of all, choose a major or field of study to pursue while we are there, leading to the career that we will spend our lives doing. No pressure, right? Wrong. I remember being extremely overwhelmed 2 years ago at this time when I had to choose, and to be honest, my choice of major was a shot in the dark based solely on the fact that I enjoyed editing video. From this hobby I chose Journalism and Broadcasting with a Media Production concentration.

Going into my freshman year with this major, I had no idea what to expect. I didn’t even fully understand why my hobby of video editing fit into a journalism major, but I figured I would find out soon enough.

Once I started taking the classes in the major, it all started to make more sense. Journalists, video editors, PR people, filmmakers, broadcasters — we all go hand in hand. All of us operate under the same umbrella of the Media, and, for lack of a less-cheesy metaphor, we have to help each other out when storms come. I began to develop a deep appreciation for all forms of media: newspaper, television news, public relations companies, radio, cinema, and marketing, to name a few. As I went through the classes in my freshman year such as Fundamentals of Media, News Writing, Intro to Digital Video and Audio, I began to delve deeper into the major that I had chosen — and I realized I had chosen right.

Enter sophomore year. Everything has changed. All of a sudden the pressure is on; we are no longer freshmen with a free pass for not knowing what we are doing. Sophomore year for me began the search for internships, thoughts about what will look best on my resume, and trying to see how many possible video projects I could take on at once without losing it. I continued my internship with the college’s marketing office, where I edited video in an advertising setting, and I spent my winter break Googling crazy and ambitious summer internships into the wee hours of the night.

Suddenly the major was no longer just about classes, but rather now it is more about real life. In real life we won’t get a syllabus laying out all our assignments. We won’t see how our grades are weighted — heck, there won’t even be “grades”, there’ll be evaluations, and if you fail, you can’t do extra credit, you’ll get fired.

I’m not saying all this to scare you (although, it does scare me quite a bit), but actually quite the opposite.

As terrifying as this part of my life is, it’s also extremely exciting. Finally, I feel like I am becoming an expert in the thing that I love to do more than anything else in the world. Me: the girl who made music videos on her Flip camera with her brother since she was 6 years old, me: the girl who was president of her high school video yearbook club and wondered if she’d ever find anything else she enjoyed doing more, and, me: the girl who had no idea if this journalism major was for her — yes, this girl is finally figuring it out. Slowly, but still figuring it out. I am applying to internships with huge production companies in California that, let’s be honest, I’ll probably never get, but I did it anyway because hey, I can. I’m young, and I’m at the starting line of my career, ready to take off running. I have no idea if I’m brave enough to leave home, or if I even want to, but I’m trying it. Because I can. Because I’m living my life.

I know I’m only a sophomore and I still have over 2 years ahead of me, but I am here to tell you that no matter how stressed you are, whether you are in that phase of applying to the colleges, choosing the college, or in the dreaded phase of choosing the major out of the list of many, it will pay off. Work hard, do what you love, and soon you’ll see that line between school and real life become less blurred, and you will be able to clearly see over to the other side of that line. That’s why we’re all here, right? To study what we love, to practice it, to embrace it, and then, when we’re ready, to do it.

So, wherever this semester leads me, or where this summer leads me, or where the next 5 years leads me, I know I will be able to say I chose to do what I love and I’m having a wonderful time doing it.

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With my Talon Television friends after filming our Friends parody

 

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Me talking on our weekly entertainment recap show, “What’s Up, What’s Down”

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At the December 2016 Brockport Winter Gala

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