Community Newspapers Provide Outlet for Recent Grads

“Print is dead.” “Journalism is a dying profession.” “Everything is going to be online.” “Newspaper circulation is down.” “It’s not a good time to get into journalism.”

Every journalism student within the last five years or so has heard those words. Those are the nagging words of relatives who question why you chose journalism. The words of current journalists who speak to lecture halls filled to the brim with bright-eyed cub reporters waiting to burst out into the real world. But what people forget to tell you is that not all of that is true.

Newspapers AREN’T dead. It’s not really a bad time to get into journalism. Not everything is online.

My first job is proof of that. I write for a community newspaper with an editorial staff of two that I found out was hiring through an ad in the newspaper itself. Yes, times are tough for journalism. But what field could you study where times aren’t tough? Not many.

My point is, just because major news outlets are pushing their online content, social media, etc. doesn’t mean there isn’t a place for the print product. Community journalism thrives on its print product. People like having a newspaper in their mailbox or on their front porch with the week’s news. And quite frankly, I like writing for print.

Plus, community papers are the perfect way for recent college grads (like myself) to work in a big media market, but not be ‘thrown to the wolves’ (so to speak) by jumping into a big newspaper like the New York Times or L.A.  Times. It allows you to continue honing your craft, find your strengths, determine your weaknesses and improve your overall presentation as a reporter.

There’s still a place for newspapers. Not everything is going online. I firmly believe that. And to be honest, if that wasn’t the case, I wouldn’t have a job right now.

*Image courtesy of a Google search

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5 thoughts on “Community Newspapers Provide Outlet for Recent Grads

  1. This is definitely true. When I tell people that I want to be a journalist, they immediately tell me that the news is dead and that I should use my time for something else. If the news is dead, our society is screwed.

  2. You are dead one! We started a small community newspaper 18 months ago and are starting our second one in July 2012. We would not be starting a second paper if the 1st community newspaper was not going very strong!

    • Starting two community papers in less than two years is pretty impressive. It just goes to show that all of the people who claim the industry is dying are either not involved in the industry and just repeating what they hear, or they don’t realize how important community newspapers are, especially to small towns. Thanks for reading, by the way!

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