BJ Koubaroulis, former George Mason University student who graduated with a B.A. in Communication in 2004, spoke to our Comm. 361 class on March 31. He currently works a a sports writer at The Washington Post.
The first thing he spoke about was how “you’ll start from the bottom and work your way up: that’s how you learn.” While it may seem like an obvious statement, it’s easy to forget that the only way you’re going to learn is by making your mistakes NOW instead of when it REALLY matters.
He recommends working at a small paper to give you an opportunity to 1) learn and 2) make your mistakes.
Going along with that, he said he learned the most at his internships and the small newspapers he worked for.
He explained how he fell in love with high school sports and actually enjoyed it the most out of all his sports coverage for three reasons: 1) Most access, 2) Most real people, and 3) The people actually enjoy speaking to you.
He then spoke a lot about video. That words seems to keep appearing. He explained how video has been a life changing experience for him. He explained how individuals can harness the power of video, whereas before media companies were needed to utilize video. ANYONE CAN DO IT.
Video allowed him to become a better writer. If that’s not reason enough to learn video, then I don’t know what is.
He then explained how everyone should learn:
- How to use the Web
- Social media
And with that he had this to say about journalism today: “It’s just one job now. Everything is intermixed.”
“If you’re not going to change, you’re just going to get left behind.”
“Do all of it, don’t limit yourself.”
He then ended his presentation with FOUR things every journalist should have:
- Be ready to work!
In conclusion, he also showed us a REALLY cool website that incorporated all the things he’s talking about. It is an interactive website of George Mason University’s Fairfax campus. Check it out here.