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A change of career direction

For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to work in journalism. It was what I wanted to do throughout high school and sixth form, and my mind never really wavered. I love to write, read and am fascinated by current affairs and the world around me – so it seemed a natural fit.

I was lucky enough to obtain a place to study Multimedia Journalism at the University of Salford, Media City and have really loved learning about all types of journalism – what to do and what not to do, the good and the bad.

Throughout the course, we all had the opportunity to work as real journalists producing and creating content, which was brilliant. We could take on a variety of roles such as reporters, editors, and as members of the social media or tech teams.

It was during this time that it dawned on me that the actual “reporter” side of journalism may not be for me long term. I absolutely loved the opportunity to interview people and tell their stories but I realised it might not be quite the right career for me straight out of university. Initially, this took me by surprise. I was heartbroken and panicked that the ideas I had for my career no longer seemed like a good fit. I worried I had wasted my time on a degree that might not prove helpful.

I then pulled myself together and spoke to a university careers advisor. Who helped me to see just how many branches you can explore with any degree, using the skills you have learnt and applying them in a slightly different way.

I pursued my love for editing and the more academic theoretical side of the field and I am now, (providing I achieve the correct grades), heading for a Masters in Publishing, combining my lifelong love for learning, writing and reading with the journalism skills from my degree!

Although I am not where I thought I would be, heading for a career as a budding reporter, I am grateful that my course allowed me to see just how vast the field is and how far the skills can take you. My Masters may do the same, opening doors to ideas that I’d never previously considered - but I have learned that it is just as important to try different things and rule them out as it is to find that thing that you absolutely adore.

So, I’m writing all of this down in an attempt to help any other student who may be feeling lost or worried about their career choices. I have been able to realise that the journalistic skills provided by any degree are beneficial in a range of ways I had never realised, allowing you to pursue a wide range of options.

My slight change of direction is nothing. I have come across so many people to have had a complete change of career several years down the line. It is daunting at first, but no matter what you do after university or school, you never lose that initial training you had and can always return to it, in a whole range of ways.

Author Biography

My name is Kathryn Austin, and I am in my third year of studying Multimedia Journalism at the University of Salford. I have always had a strong passion for writing and am hoping to enter into a career within the Journalism or Publishing industry. In my spare time I love to spend time with my family and friends, enjoy travelling and reading, as well as having keen interests in film, fashion, history, and current affairs.

Note: 'Student Blog' articles highlight the student perspective on issues relating to ProtectED. Consequently, this article reflects the views of the author and not ProtectED.



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