Thursday, September 9, 2010

Syllabus for JOUR101, Fall 2010 (04401)

Prof. Bob Stewart (stewartr@ohio.edu) and Peter Shaplen (peter@shaplen.com)
E.W. Scripps School of Journalism
Scripps Hall 105B

Course location: Scripps Hall 211

Learning goals: To gain a critical understanding of how journalism and media function as well as shape our lives.

Required Mass Communication: Folkerts, Lacy and Larabee. The Media in Your Life. 4th edition. Allyn & Bacon, May 11, 2007. [ISBN: 9780205523658].

Attendance: Required [final grade drops a half-letter for every two unexcused absences].

Academic dishonesty: “Academic integrity and honesty are basic values of Ohio University. Students are expected to follow standards of academic integrity and honesty. Academic misconduct is a violation of the Ohio University Student Code of Conduct subject to a maximum sanction of disciplinary suspension or expulsion as well as a grade penalty in the course. … A student or student organization found to have violated a Code A offense will be subject to the full range of sanctions (reprimand, disciplinary probation, suspension, or expulsion). Being under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol does not diminish or excuse a violation of the student code of conduct. … Dishonesty or deception in fulfilling academic requirements…includes, but is not limited to cheating, plagiarism, un-permitted collaboration, forged attendance (when attendance is required), fabrication (e.g., use of invented information or falsification of research or other findings), using advantages not approved by the instructor (e.g., unauthorized review of a copy of an exam ahead of time), knowingly permitting another student to plagiarize or cheat from one's work, or submitting the same assignment in different courses without consent of the instructor. Note: An instructor may impose a grade penalty for academic misconduct and/or file a judicial referral.” [This statement is copied with permission from the Student Handbook. For more from the handbook see: ohio.edu/judiciaries]

Grades: Final grades are based on a combination of the exams (50%) and production exercises (50%) (see scale below).

95-10090-9487-8984-8680-8377-7974-7670-7367-6964-6660-630-59
AA-B+BB-C+CC-D+DD-F

Weekly Reading/Assignment Schedule:
Week 1, 9/10Media Processes & FunctionsChap. 1
Week 2, 9/17Books/Newspapers/Magazines/RadioChaps. 2-4, 6
Week 3, 9/24Television, Computers & InternetChaps. 7, 9;
First Exam
Week 4, 10/1Journalism: Information & Society, Public RelationsChaps. 10-11
Week 5, 10/8Advertising, Ethics/Regulation, Mass Communication ResearchChaps. 12-15;
Second Exam
Week 6, 10/15TBA
Week 7, 10/22TBA
Week 8, 10/29TBA
Week 9, 11/5TBA
Week 10, 11/12TBA
Final Exam Period: Tuesday, 11/16 (reading day) 8-10:00 a.m.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Morgan Eastman

I am a strong believer in having no regrets. I feel that the mistakes in your life are all there for a reason and to teach you what you need to do the next time a situation like that happens again. The events that make up my life made me who I am today. When I was five, my mom and dad broke up. When I was seven, my dad started dating my step-mom, Carol, and I began living with them. My mom called me one night when I was 8 telling me that she was living in Virginia and the only time I would see her was if I drove down to see her. Since then I have seen her once a summer for about a month.

Through my mom leaving, I have had problems maintaining relationships and friendships and trust has become a really difficult thing for me to do. I feel that everyone is going to up and leave at one point. I learned not to regret her leaving because it has made me a stronger and more independent person.

Since I was six, I have been playing softball. I was a pitcher and still continue to play. I have met some amazing people who have changed my life, and I love that my dad and I always had something to talk about and something to do together. I do not regret the long weekends of doing nothing but playing softball, the strenuous workouts that made my legs numb, the time with my friends I had to give up to play in tournaments and the ridiculous farmers tans I acquired over the summers because it helped me learn to manage my time and it also made me realize that commitment to a team is so important that that being a part of a team is something that you need to do in order to achieve a high goal.

In high school I took Journalism 1 my freshman year and then decided that I wanted to be a part of the broadcast journalism program. I was involved in this for a year before I realized that this is what I really wanted to do as a career. I met a boy named Kevin who was diagnosed with cancer in his brain. I was assigned to do a story on his story, and the things that I learned and witnessed through the process is what made me want to be a journalist. I don’t regret the hours on end of filming, writing, editing and all around hard work because seeing the way the students reacted and stopped what they were doing to listen to Kevin, a boy who so many people knew so little about, made me realize that broadcast journalism is want to do this every day of my life.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Caleigh Bourgeois

Ryan Judy

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Christa Lamendola

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Lincoln Sklar

The year is 2006. The place is Bridgeport, West Virginia. The controversy is about Walter Sallman’s portrait of Jesus Christ. The sleepy little town awoke on March 8 with a battle on their hands. The portrait might not have matter in any other setting than right outside the principal’s office at the local high school. This was the day that my world was changed, and it hasn’t been the same since.

My father had gone the night before to the county board of education meeting to ask for the picture to be removed. We were not the only non-Christian family in the area; we were not the only ones being cast as outsiders. Never did he think that the town would go into an uproar; growing up as a young Jewish boy in racially diverse schools in Brooklyn, he thought that once he pointed out the fact that the painting’s existence in the high school was illegal, the BOE would be more than willing to take it down. Little did he know that his daughters would be launched into a nightmare-like situation.

As we rode in the car down Johnson Avenue, we noted the unusual sound of multiple honks. It wasn’t until we neared the school that I saw the sign and the protestors. “Honk for Jesus” the white banner, parked in front of the high school said. Honestly, I was shocked. How could people be so ignorant? Unfortunately, it didn’t stop there.

Entering the school, all eyes were on me and my sister. I was quiet, and rarely talked in class, so to be receiving this much attention was not something I was used to. That’s when the whispers started, and the noise level in the middle school cafeteria rose so that I knew I was blushing. In class, it didn’t get any better. People passed around petitions right in front of me, and one student even stood up and gave a speech about how “stupid” my father was and about how he needed to be stopped. Some that I thought were friends turned their backs on me as I walked by.

The poor treatment of me and my family continued up until the painting was stolen in the middle of the night before proper legislation could be brought against the case. Slowly, things quieted down, but as I prepared to enter high school, I was nervous about what would happen. When I first started at Bridgeport High School, I was extremely shy; I was starting in a place where I didn’t know who was my friend or my enemy. I stuck to clubs that were “safe,” that kids I knew were in instead of branching out. That was before I took journalism.

I was asked to write a story for the yearbook, and after reading it, the journalism teacher, Mrs. Alice Rowe, approached me to tell me I would be taking her class the next semester even if she had to change my schedule herself. Needless to say, come second semester, I found myself in second block Journalism one. My eyes were opened as I learned of a world full of intrigue, of libel and sedition, a world where the truth must be told and journalist are the ones to do it. I also learned that journalists not only tell the stories of the world, but shape the way people look at what is going on around them. It is reporters who are down in the trenches with troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, up in the heights of Whistler Mountain at the Olympics, and at the proceedings of the White House. As the way I viewed the world changed, so did the way I viewed myself.

My past has made me realize who I am. I am no longer the shy girl who attempted to stay out of the fray while others tried to tell me how I could and could not feel. I believe in a world free of the kind of ignorance displayed by the small (in both size and mind) town of Bridgeport. I believe in a world of acceptance.

Bradley Parks

I believe that there are certain things every human being should live their life with. The number one thing to bring along in every day of life, I think, is passion. Without passion, the work people do and the decisions they make don't seem as meaningful to the person.

I try to live my life with passion. There are things that I love in this world and I love them with every fiber of my being. My dream of becoming a sportscaster is one of those things and something I have held near to my heart. I want that to be what I do for the length of my career and in order for that to happen I feel as if I need to take every moment I have in the press box and put all of the passion I can into those moments.

I like to draw inspiration from Gus Johnson, sportscaster for CBS. Johnson is able to bring excitement into every play and every second of every game no matter what the sport. He could make a timeout seem exciting! I try to do the same when I am on the mic. I want my listeners to feel the same excitement that I have pumping through my veins. If I'm calling a basketball game, I'll watch the ball being passed around among the players and calmly describe it to the listening audience. As the penetration into the lane increases, so does the volume and excitement in my voice. It's like a volcano on the brink of eruption. As the ball inches closer and closer to the hoop, I want my listeners to feel the emotion swelling up in my body. When that leather sphere passes through the thin nylon cords is when the eruption occurs. Excitement overflows my passion bucket and spills out onto the floor. The game could be a blowout, but each basket scored, to me, is like a lightning strike. It's quick and exciting and gets my adrenaline going on high.

Next to my friends and family, there is nothing I love more than the sport of basketball. I've never been the best player, but I am completely obsessed with the sport. I love to play, love to watch, and love to study the game. I also love to bring the sport to other people by being in the booth. Basketball is one of the things I'm most passionate about.

I carry my passion bucket with me everywhere and I think that others should too. What is in others' buckets? That's up to them. What is in mine? Family, friends, school, sports, theatre, politics, and the list goes on and on. With every piece of work I do, I reach in the bucket and sprinkle passion on every inch of that work. I feel if I'm passionate about what I do, it gives it that much more meaning to me.

Carli Pappas

Nothing is what it seems. People lie or tell partial truths. You base your life, your actions, your choices on a foundation, a code, a set of rules, of reasons. And then a shift is made and the foundation quakes. You start to stumble, unsure, not quite as steady, as confident as before. The trembling alleviates and you look down, realizing that there are cracks in your foundation. Nothing is as smooth, as clean cut as you thought it was.

I pride myself on being cool headed, grounded. I pride myself on being able to let go and adapt to change. I pride myself on being strong and fearless. I pride myself on being unattached, on being able to go where the wind blows me and where the road takes me. I’m living behind a mask.

This I believe, this I know as I chat with my best friends--with Dove chocolates, root beer, and two pints of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream in the center of our forever bond made triangle--if anything, I am too passionate and too sensitive.

This I believe, this I know as I shout out “Mom?” in a tearful, quivering, searching voice and collapse into her warm embrace, shedding not only tears but also my apathetic, indifferent, unattached facade: that I am not only so attached and unwilling to change, but I am also deeply, deeply afraid.

I am afraid of running out of time. I am afraid of taking things for granted and not fully appreciating the love I receive and I am afraid that I don’t fully return that love. I am afraid that I won’t get to do all of the things I want to do. I am afraid that I don’t feel enough. I am afraid of losing my individuality, my Carli-ness. I am afraid of missing out and not living. But most of all, I am afraid of moving from this moment, this moment of perfect content and happiness because I don’t see life getting any better than this.

That’s life, though: moments of happiness and sadness, events of significance and insignificance, periods of changes and shifts, and periods of stillness and stagnation.

One thing I will always believe and will always know: No one is as lucky as me. So I’ll fill in the cracks and start again.

Drew Davis

Sitting here with a blank slate before me, posed is the question of what I believe.

To tell the truth I think that no one really knows what they believe in until they are about to die. Only in those spiraling seconds can a person really examine their life and the choices they made to decide whether or not they were the right ones. But, since I am not in my death throws I will examine my life up to this point.

I believe in music. From an early age I have always enjoyed listening to music. When I was a fifth grader I enrolled in the band as a drummer. This sparked a passion that has not died out, even to this day. I quit school band in eighth grade but I continued pursuing the drum set. By the time I was a Junior I had been in two bands that had played shows in Cleveland and even out of the state. I believe that music is the original language between all the different people of the world. Styles may vary but the messages that songs convey are almost always the same. A tribute to a god, a love story, or the epic journey of a hero all stretch through music to every culture through out time.

I believe in America, but not the people who run it. Republican or Democrat, I do not care, I think they are all corrupt. I have grown up in a very trying time for this nation. Though I have lost faith in the people that run it, I have not lost faith in the basic tenants that it was built on. I believe in the teachings of Thomas Jefferson and enjoy reading his well thought out, eloquent sentences that form the basis for our nation.

I believe in the individual. The single greatest factor in decision making is myself. I believe that no one can tell me the right or the wrong choice because they are not in my shoes. I hold the keys to my own enlightenment, my own sanity, my own sovereignty, my own etc. The list goes on. In this way I ensure that I am held accountable for my actions and that I deal with them accordingly. I do not need to put my problems onto someone or something else because that just masks the real solution. Therefore, all the ideas and thoughts formulated in my head come from myself and only myself. This way I am the ruler of my domain. I am my own king.

I believe that history is the greatest way to learn about the future. The actions of our ancestors shaped the human race into what it is today. I believe that if we do not pause and reflect on the past from time to time that we will lose grip with the future. I feel that this has happened once again to the world and that the human race needs to stop and reflect on the choices that they have made in the past years and decide if they were the right ones. This was we can fix our mistakes and move one making better choices for our children and their children.

I want to be the best I can be. I believe that I can do this through hard work and dedication. If I put my mind to something there is no stopping me from obtaining my goal. I believe that hard work always pays off and that being lazy never does. Working hard means that I am preparing for the future and ensuring that it is a bright one. Being lazy is just a selfish act that will not advance any goals of mine or the people’s around me.

If I died today I think that I would be mostly content with my life up to this point. I believe that I am going in the right direction for myself. The only thing that I would be disappointed about is that I did not yet finish some goals that I have set out before myself. I do plan on finishing these goals and more that I have not yet set out for myself.

Brooke Bunce

Kate Irby

I grew up with slightly strict parents who treated freedom as a privilege, not a right. They gradually began to give me more freedom as I matured, and once it came I valued it more and more. This also means I began to realize that freedom, while a fundamental right for adults in this country, requires work.

I dreamt of the day I would turn sixteen since I was very young; I wanted to have a job to earn money and be able to drive on my own. These were my first real opportunities for independence from my parents and I couldn’t wait to experience them. I took the driver’s test as soon as I could and applied for jobs all over the area a week after my sixteenth birthday. I began to pay my own phone bill and whenever I wanted to eat out, go shopping, or see movies with friends I paid for it myself. Though not always a pleasant fact, I started to recognize that while money isn’t the key to happiness, it is to real freedom and independence.

My sister lead a complicated life in her late teens. She became pregnant at sixteen, dropped out of college, fired from her job, evicted from her apartment, and married someone without telling my parents. After she had her second child and she had told my parents about the marriage, her life thankfully calmed down. Now she is happy with her family and her life. But during all of that she was mostly dependent upon my parents or her boyfriend at the time. Now that she is married she depends on her husband financially, though of course he also depends on her to watch their kids. Watching all this happen to her frightened me and showed me why being responsible, going to college, and taking your education and career seriously is so important.

It is one of my worst fears that something will go wrong in my life and I will have to drop out of college or depend heavily on my parents after I graduate. While my sister loves being a housewife and is okay with asking my parents for occasional financial help, I don’t believe I would be nearly as happy as she is had my life taken the same route. I expect myself to be self-sufficient and take responsibility for my actions. Asking for money without feeling like I earned it always feels wrong to me, and one of my main goals is to experience a successful career that I enjoy. The most satisfying moments of my life are when my personal hard work has paid off: such as getting a raise at work, receiving scholarships, or being accepted into this class.

Both my family and friends have told me that I am very stubborn. I know what I want and I realize that to achieve my goals I have to be dedicated and sedulous. Opportunities are rarely, if ever, handed to anyone on a silver platter. If I expect to get the best out of my life I must create my own opportunities.

Hallie Gebel

It is dark here. I am alone. It is kind of smelly. I feel the world staring at me to make a move. Make a move. Just dance. Leave the embarrassment for tomorrow. Now it is time to make a fool of myself.

I was the mascot for basketball games during my senior year of high school. Try to just imagine this: a tiny girl wearing long, white gym shorts, a maroon jersey, and for the finishing touch - a jumbo size head that resembles present day John Travolta. This was the picture of the mascot, Sparky the Hillclimber.

It was an awkward time to say the least, but I could not help feeling liberated every time I walked out onto to court.

I always thought of myself as an outgoing person, but I was awakened to a world of obnoxious fans, sarcastic teens, and terrified children, all of whom were unforgiving and at most times, made me want to run away and cry. Never before had I felt so utterly out of place and so completely zoned into every sense. Almost every step I took had to be planned and executed with extreme precision, because one wrong move could send the head toppling over, or worse, my body into a cluster of people. I found myself constantly checking my shoe strings, if my shirt was tucked in, and if a basketball was barreling towards me. Somehow, though, even with all of these obstacles combined, I felt like I could do anything I wanted because it was not really ‘me’ jumping around and dancing, it was an alter ego that did not care what anyone else thought.

My entire life I have always cared what people think. My entire life I have tried to live up to almost unattainable standards. I always wanted to make everyone around me feel like I had it all. Everything I have ever wanted in life I have worked hard for because I never want to feel like I am cheating myself from a better future, or actually a better persona. I cannot lie, most things I have done in my life, I have done for the praise of others. Every move I made was choreographed to make sure I did not make a single mistake, because mistakes meant weaknesses. All of this changed when I put on the mascot head. Suddenly, I did not care who was watching- I just wanted to dance and dance until I felt I was just a plain fool. The dictionary defines dancing as: leaping, skipping, jumping, etc., as from excitement or emotion. I would say that the only way to celebrate letting go of people’s doubts and personal paranoia is to dance.

The experience of being a mascot was something I will never forget, and I still cannot believe how it remains in the forefront of my mind every day. I was humbled by the experience because now I know that I can go through life being my own mascot, and I do not need the praise of others to know that I am accomplished. All I have to do is remember the immortal words of Lady Gaga. Just Dance.

Kaitlyn Conner

I believe that a person's actions should be motivated by their power to impact another person positively.

I grew up in a household where money was put aside to be used for helping others. My dad often comes home after a long day of work, only to leave again to meet with a needy family who had come to our church seeking financial help. My mom never misses an opportunity to remind my brother and I of how blessed we have always been. She brings us with her as she buys up half of the grocery store, filling boxes for other families to use on Thanksgiving and Christmas.

My church provided opportunities to go on mission trips each year. I would travel on a bus that broke down without fail every summer to spend a week working with other teenagers on a project.

I saw how a creating a brand new baseball field could impact the lives of parentless children in North Carolina, or how a re-shingled, rain proofed roof impacted the life of a sweet widow in Michigan whose children had grown and left.

Later I saw how my performances in musical theatre could have a positive impact on someone else, even if that impact was as small as letting strangers in the audience forget their troubles for a few hours.

Because of the example set by my parents, I learned to watch the effect my decisions had on other people, whether I was singing, building or simply taking time to talk to someone.

I had always wanted to be an astronaut. I visited the NASA Space Centers in Huntsville, Alabama and Cape Kennedy, Florida, and the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC. I studied books about shuttles, watched movies like Apollo 13, and idolized Sally Ride. On Saturday, February 1, 2003, I woke up early to watch the news and see the crew of the Columbia return home to their families. But as I turned on the news, I could hear the distress in the voices of the news anchors. Having woken up before anyone else in the house, and without a voice, I painstakingly wrote down every detail of the events taking place live on my television screen.

As I watched the families of the crewmembers learn that their loved ones would not be coming home, I discovered the impact these broadcasts could have on the lives of the television audience.

The news broadcast enabled these families to share memories of their lost husbands, fathers, wives and mothers with the people of America. Families were touched by the courage of the families of each astronaut. Children were inspired to try harder academically to realize dreams of building other spacecraft, or journeying to space themselves.

I decided that my love for telling the stories of others could have a greater impact on others than my love of flying. There is something so gratifying about doing something you love and seeing someone else benefit from it.

[See original post.]

Kelly Gifford

While eating my mint chocolate chip ice cream before bed a few nights ago, I began to ask myself who my being is. While pondering this question I dozed off and had a very odd dream, probably brought on by the large amount of ice cream I had just eaten. I was walking along beside both my parents in a field, just walking not talking at all. Then we came up to a bridge. The bridge looked worn and sort of rickety, as though many people had trodden upon it. I turned to my left and asked my dad, “Should we cross?” He replied, “Only you can Kelly. Your mother and I have already been across once and now it is your turn.”

Even in my dream I thought my dad sounded a little more like Gandalf the Grey than my actual dad. So I chuckled and said, “Uh okay. Enough deep talk lets go.” My mom stopped me and said the same thing as my dad. I was completely bewildered. I was about to set off on some broken up bridge that could probably collapse at any moment and all they could say to me is “it’s your turn?”

They said their goodbyes and left me there, not turning back to see if I had crossed onto the bridge yet. I stood at the foot of the bridge for a while going over the pros and cons of crossing. Finally I stepped onto the bridge and began my journey into the unknown.

After what seemed like years of hopping over holes in the bridge and trying to keep my balance I came up to a huge mirror. To my surprise I looked older. Not much older, probably about four years older. I touched the glass on the mirror and it shattered revealing a golden gateway whose arches read, “Whom you truly are lies within.”

Then I woke up.

The first thing I thought of after I jerked awake was that I have to stop eating ice cream before bed. As the day grew on, I realized the dream was a metaphor about me finding out who I truly am over my four years of college. The dream helped me recognize that I do not know my true being now because I have not experienced enough to know who I am. College will give me the experience I need to answer this question without hesitation. For now, being a little undecided of who I am is just fine with me.

Aja Goare

Growing up, roll call always brought laughter to the room. “A.J.? A-juh? A-ha?” I would doodle on scrap paper and try to ignore the giggles which made me embarrassed of my Steely Dan inspired name. Of course, none of my 10 year old classmates had any idea who the band was, but as I’ve gotten older I’m happier to explain.

My mom is an artist, and my dad is a musician, and that is how they make a living. Because they’ve chosen a less than common career path, they’ve supported and even encouraged my siblings and I to try new things. I’ve tried to take full advantage of that, participating in sports and the arts, and even changes to my appearance.

The first time I ever dyed my hair, I was 9, and my mom had a box kit that she applied while I sat impatiently on a stool in the kitchen. From that day on, when I looked in the mirror and saw the newly highlighted golden streaks against my medium brown hair, I loved that people had the ability to alter their appearance. I’ve dyed my hair every natural color (and a few non-natural), and have had it elbow length to pixie cut. Besides hair alterations (which makes some girls cry at the thought), I’ve had my ears gauged and pierced 6 times, my nose, and my lip twice- along with that, a few tattoos. I love the reinventing process.

The people of the art world generally understand such a feeling. Artists’ are all about self-expression, and though I don’t believe that putting holes in my lip is truly expressing myself, it’s nice to be around people so accepting. I was probably born with an easel and canvas in hand. I’ve just always enjoyed art- virtually, every aspect. I draw, paint (acrylics, oil, watercolor), form, create. My high school art department was a big deal, and my fellow student-artists and I were constantly being asked for help around the community, doing things such as creating Child Abuse Awareness silk banners for the like foundation, teaching surrounding area youth the fundamentals of art, and taking photographs at the annual Pickle’s Blues Extravaganza.

In opposition, the world of sports is amazingly different and unreceptive of such self expression. My coach was always baffled when I would come to practice with a different hair color or shiny object on my face. But I loved the game. Up until seventh grade, the competitor in my (at the time) 4’5’’ person, had never been released, and once it was, I was hooked. I played as much as I could, literally all year round for 6 straight years. My senior year, my high school team went 19-6 and sectional runners up- the best Lima Senior High has done since 1980.

Buying hair dye, Asic knee pads, and putting gas in my car all takes money so I’ve been employed since 16 and a half years old. My first job was at FOX news station, where I was a teleprompter operator and floor director (and occasionally a sports score finder). I held multiple titles because we were incredibly short on staff- 8 people, and that’s everyone from control room to talent. The job was very fun, and all of the people were playful, young (mid 20’s and under), and not afraid to use all of their vocabulary (and yes, I mean all). Once the station closed, I was almost immediately hired at TV 44, a local Christian TV station. It was a much more organized station with countless employees, and I was the tape op. When I say organized, I should also include conservative, professional, and religiously driven- a drastic change from FOX. None of my “that’s what she said” jokes were appreciated, my lack of religious enthusiasm was frowned upon, and my nose hoop was never directly confronted, but you can only stare at it for so long before I get the hint. After that, I went on to work at Applebee’s as a host, which is by far the hardest job I’ve had. I’ve got newly formed wrist muscles, the ability to induce cooperation in grouchy people, and overall, a newfound leadership role.

I’ve grown a lot since those pigtailed, lunchbox carrying days, but there is still so much to do, so many places to go, and countless things to learn; which is why I have chosen journalism.

Morgan Meade

Kendra Wagoner

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Theresa Ianni

I am many things. I am an athlete, and a leader. I pride myself in the chances I have taken and the opportunities I have grasped, because every experience has shaped me into the person I am today. As we grow older, the question of who we are seems to become more complicated to answer. I believe this is because we discover so many more qualities in us than we ever really noticed. When asked to introduce my being to the class, I thought to myself. This is a new school, I know no one and can be anyone I want to be, who am I? The question challenged me to really think. I am many things, and have been since I can remember. When I really thought about the question, I realized that among many, I am one thing. I am the same as every other Ohio University student. I am a Bobcat. So then I began to think. What does it take to really be a Bobcat? I looked up some characteristics of the animal, and realized I was more right in saying I was a Bobcat than I thought.

Bobcats are said to never take their eye off the prize. They are also said to be curious and passionate, especially while hunting. I, in ways can relate to the animal. Although some situations may be foreign to me, I will not hesitate to try new things and jump into different situations. I will never give up when I set a goal for myself, and will at all times do the best that I can to succeed. I am willing to give one hundred percent to any cause. I have played softball since I was five years old. Although the main purpose of the sport was to enjoy myself, I always pushed myself to become a better team player. If I made one error in a game, I would make it my goal to play consecutive flawless fielding games. This test challenged me to work harder to go above and beyond my potential. I am extremely passionate in everything I do. Whether I am playing softball, hosting an event, or visiting with friends, I will give my all and put my whole heart into the situation.

The bobcat utilizes a variety of habitats. They travel and make homes out of different climates. I have never been one to stick with one activity. I consider myself an athlete, a singer, and a leader. In high school, I would find a club that interested me, and would try it out. There was never a bad time for me to open myself to a new experience. Over the years, I have found myself different homes in various places. My senior year, I split my hours between my job, my high school and my home. I made a home where ever I had to be.

Finally, the bobcat varies in colors. They can be gray, a yellow brown, or a red brown color. I believe that there are many different colors to me. I epitomize the color yellow by being outgoing, positive, and friendly. The color red is shown through my loving and passionate attitude towards others. My loyalty towards friends, businesses, and activities is an example of the color blue found in me.

Being a bobcat not only means going to a university. Being a bobcat depicts me as a passionate, hardworking, colorful and nomadic person. I am ready for whatever comes my way, and hopefully can be great.

Robert Faris

I have always wanted to spread knowledge around the world around me. I want to be able to show people things they never knew existed. I want to learn as much as I can about the world before I die, and that’s why I have fallen in love with journalism.

I’ve always been that kid who can do anything with technology, the one who everyone goes to when they have a problem with something. It’s not that I necessarily know what I’m doing, it’s more that I can always figure out what I need to do. I love to help my friends and even people I’ve never met when they need help.

I have always been fascinated by video production, and starting in 7th grade, I began working with my technology teacher on a video news broadcast of the morning announcements at my middle school. Even though this wasn’t real “news” per-se compared to the real world, but it got me hooked. I loved every second of it. It’s also when I got my start working with Apple’s Final Cut Studio, which was a great learning experience, it inspired me to take three years of independent study coursework in high school where I dedicated myself to learning and mastering Final Cut Pro.

The summer after 8th grade was when I really became interested in advertising. I was given the opportunity to intern under a producer/director to work on a commercial from filming to final editing for Time Warner Cable. It was an intense three day experience. On the first day we filmed for 8 hours, I learned how the process of cutting down footage to create a enticing and inviting advertisement. It took 2 days of post production which created even more interest in me. It was really neat to get to work with the entire production team, the actors, directors & producers. It was a rewarding experience that gave me confidence to continue to pursue video production and advertising.

In high school I took my school’s journalism course for two years and quickly began to fall in love with producing real news content. I quickly became the “Video Production Chief” and extensively worked with Final Cut Studio to produce our news show that we aired on Columbus’ local broadcast station. This began to cement my desire to dedicate my life to the journalism field.

I want to work with journalism and advertising because it allows me to use my creative skills, and pursue my goals to spread information around the world. Now as I enter the Scripps School of Journalism, I want to develop my skills as much as I can during my 4 years I have here at Ohio University. When I leave here I expect myself to be able to go out in the world, fully confident and ready to explore the world, and share what I learn.

Alex Westerh

I believe everyone has their own path in life to take where ever they want it to go.

Everyone believes something different depending on where they are from, who has been part of their life and how they got to their current point in life. These along with many other factors help to influence their life.

With everyone coming from different places I believe everyone is entitled to their own opinion and it is wrong to censor or try to suppress views.

My life path has taken me to this point because of my involvement in journalism throughout the past three years of high school. Journalism has taught me the importance of a freedom of viewpoints and individuality.

Since then I have known I wanted to be a journalist for the rest of my life despite all of the people who doubt the career.

Many people have told me to go into something that will make me money and my dad halfheartedly jokes that it is not too late to go to med school. But my mind has already been made up a long time ago, the unique path I have chosen for myself leads to being a journalist.

There other half of people is convinced I will not succeed on my path. I have had a teacher tell me that I was going to end up failing out of college but proving those people wrong is what makes the road to success so much more fun.

I also believe in having fun at all times, people should do whatever makes them happy.

There are very few points in my life where I am not happy and I think it is because I do not take a second of this life for granted. I realize how lucky I have it and that not everyone is happy with the path they have chosen.

As long as I keep doing what makes me happy I will consider myself to be a successful person because this is my path to take.