Alumni Supply Tips, Share Tales on Professions in Journalism

Barbara Merkley
student moderators

Student moderators Eliot Compact ’23, from the Polar Expense Club, and Halina Bennet, from The Bowdoin Orient

Andy Serwer admitted he too did not have a lot route at Bowdoin, where by he majored in record. Immediately after a quick spell in a clerical job at the Securities and Exchange Commission, he finished up at business college (“My brother went to law faculty,” he reported, “so I couldn’t do that!”). Serwer said his preferred matter to do at small business college was to “sit on the techniques in the sunshine with The Wall Street Journal, looking through tales about individuals who have been acquiring these firms and preventing each other. ‘This is superior,’ I thought.” He turned down a work give from an investment lender and headed to the Columbia journalism university to go after a master’s. With two graduate levels under his belt, Serwer then joined Fortune Journal as a “junior junior truth checker.” Serwer ended up shelling out 20-nine years at Fortune, the place he rose to the rank of controlling editor and where by both of those Benner and Kowitt labored for him at various occasions.

When questioned to provide suggestions for any future journalists, Serwer explained it may sound obvious but it is crucial to be a “self-starter… You have to truly want it and display that you want it.” It is also important, he stated, to have printed writing samples to exhibit. With the availability of on the web publishing platforms like Substack and Medium (“where you can create about whichever the hell you want”), Serwer claimed “there’s no excuse” for not possessing clips.

“My emotion about journalism school is that it’s not always a necessity for the work, but for me it was unquestionably the proper move.” Beth Kowitt ’07. 

Benner reported future journalists must not necessarily really feel pressured to check out to go straight to function at a substantial-profile outlet like The New York Situations from faculty. It can be a fantastic plan to master your trade at a nearby or regional stage, she extra. “You’re likely to make faults,” she claimed, so learn the ropes initial. “When I arrived at the Situations aged thirty-7, I realized what I was executing.” A background in monetary journalism is also extremely handy, she explained, simply because it’s so  fact-based mostly. At the close of the day, a firm possibly will make revenue and merchandise, or it does not, stated Benner.

This doesn’t imply, however, that business enterprise journalism is missing in human drama, extra Kowitt. “Money is intriguing, right? It drives men and women to do ridiculous things. There is no lack of intriguing stories,” she described. “It’s about the narrative, discovering the character, and there are so many characters in the earth of business.”

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