Becoming A Journalist

How I started my career as a journalist?

Hi everyone! My name is Olivia and I'm a journalist and blogger. You can find me on social media @LivNews and my blog is:

I’ve been a journalist since I was 15! I’ve worked for several media organizations throughout my career, including CNN, GMA, ABC News and 60 Minutes. Over the years I’ve reported stories from the Oscars, from a marijuana field, from the top of a mountain and from a sleeper bus across the country. I’ve covered wildfires, chased kidnappers, traveled to political conventions and even become a mermaid for a day.

Here’s how I started my career.

One summer my mom said it was time to get another hobby. I had always been into sports growing up, but this time she meant something different.

“You need something that will set you apart for college,” my mom told me.

She was right. college admissions were getting increasingly competitive – and are still today.

But what hobby?! I liked sports. I liked to hang out with friends. What else did I like?

My parents said it first. You like to write. What about doing something with that? But I had no idea what extracurricular could involve ‘fun’ writing. My mom had worked for her high school newspaper and loved it. So, she suggested I try to write for a newspaper.

Soon after, she took me to the local town newspaper to offer my services – whatever was needed. I was to help with administrative tasks, but they said I could also pitch stories if I had any good ideas.

I was taking a summer school class that July to get ahead. I wanted to get history out of the way so I could take drama during the school year. It was in that summer school history class that I got my first big break!

One day, in the middle of class, we saw a rat pop out of a hole in the wall. It wouldn’t be the last time that summer. So, I started investigating – talking to people, asking questions, looking for answers on why this was happening.

I took my story to the town’s paper and it turned into a front-page exposé!

That’s the story of how I started my journalism career. From there I worked for my high school newspaper eventually becoming Editor-in-Chief, while continuing to contribute to the town newspaper as well.

I went to college to study print journalism, but the financial crisis happened. While every career looked dismal at the time, journalism – already known for not paying well – didn’t look like a solid bet for the high cost of tuition. I switched to communications and marketing. But that’s the thing about a passion, you can’t really let it go. By senior year I was back interning for major broadcast companies, having realized my love for video.

Then what was once a dream became a reality. I got my master’s degree in journalism from Columbia. And there you have it. Ever since I’ve worked in news.

Thanks again!


Follow along with her amazing journalism journey on Instagram @livnews!

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