By Phil Genco
My college education seems to be scaring me about what lies ahead instead of preparing me for it.
Since my senior year has started, I have become increasingly worried about what my future holds after graduation. I plan to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in communication at the end of the upcoming spring semester, but where do I go from there?
My concerns began with the horrible state of the economy. I interned at Channel 4 last semester where a lot of jobs were being cut or moved to part time. My supervisor was the sports producer, and he was doing everything he could to stay busy in his best effort to hold onto his position.
Aside from the country’s economic woes, hope seems a little dimmer everyday that I attend classes. For example, in our journalism class, we talk about how newspapers are suffering, and debate the future of journalism. When we visited the Buffalo “Snooze”, it seemed more like a museum than a big time newspaper. Everything is so much easier and faster with the use of computers and the internet, yet newspapers cannot figure out how to make money off of the medium.
Honestly, when I think about my life after graduation, it scares me. The way we discuss how the sketchy future of newspapers is frightening, and the economy is downright terrifying.
Last Thursday, however, I had a positive revelation, which has me thinking a little differently.
It started when Jim Militello shared with our class the path he took in finding his career, it made me think that there was hope out there for me. He went in many different directions, and took a few huge leaps of faith to land a job with the Associated Press doing sports radio. Jim graduated from UB with a degree in psychology while flunking out of a different college yet he has what sounds like a dream job to me. His presentation showed me that finding your calling is a journey, and that the future isn’t scary, but an opportunity.
Later that afternoon, I attended a discussion with Mr. Militello and Steve Liesman, a Pulitzer Prize winning economics reporter who currently works for CNBC. They both agreed that you must be a multidimensional, adaptive and creative person to succeed in the world of journalism. Mr. Liesman brought up a point that really struck me when he said, “Everything is changing, but let’s talk about what isn’t changing.” He went on to say that although the future is uncertain, there will always be a spot for, “…good writers that present accurate facts in a compelling way.”
It was a great opportunity to meet these guys and to hear these positive statements from two successful professionals that both attended UB, certainly helped to change my attitude and get me excited about the future.