‘You Know You’re a Student Journalist When…’

How do you know when you’ve truly become a student journalist? In a blog post last week, former CU Independent editor in chief Kate Spencer laid out more than a dozen telltale j-student signs, some serious and others tongue in cheek.

According to Spencer, a j-student at the University of Colorado Boulder who continues to serve as an Independent copy editor and ambassador-at-large, “You know you’re a student journalist when…”

You find yourself correcting your professor under your breath when your professor says “towards” instead of “toward”.

You aren’t chatting on Facebook during class, but rather are on Twitter so that you can watch the breaking news Twitter feed from the local police department.

Your excuse for missing class is “I’m sorry professor, I had an interview with the chancellor.”

You’re not texting your friends during class; you’re texting fellow reporters to see who can cover the student government meeting that night.

You edit your friends’ history and psychology papers according to AP Style.

The 2 a.m. phone call isn’t from an intoxicated friend asking for a ride, but is your fellow news editor asking you to edit a story about a frozen pipe burst on campus.

You don’t think twice about curling up on the newsroom couch with your fellow editors after a long night of editing layout.

A few items I humbly submit as additions to Spencer’s excellent list…

In any journalism, writing or media class, you feel superior to the point of getting pissed off if you earn an A-.

You begin approaching every class writing assignment with the question, “How can I get this published?”

You are excited to log two hours of copy editing overtime to earn an extra $14.50 in your paycheck.

You experience a strange minor adrenaline rush whenever you see someone flipping through the student newspaper on campus.  (Conversely, you start noticing discarded copies of the paper everywhere and become angry when friends tell you they saw your column in the current issue but didn’t actually read it.)

At 1 a.m. on production night, you gaze longingly at the week-old pizza box in the corner of the newsroom, wondering if maybe, just maybe, a single stale slice of pepperoni, original crust, might rest within its depths, waiting to be eaten.

What would you add to our lists???

Fun related post to check out: Things to Know Before Dating a Student Journalist


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