My interest in news began in 2012, a year after the Syrian war had began. Reading about the thousands of families suffering and fighting to survive made me look at myself in the mirror. I had everything. I had a family, I had safety, I had shelter and food. I had no excuse to not give it my all. One day, while walking to one of my classes, I passed big, white words printed on a broken wall, words that changed my life forever: “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?”
The Kennesaw State paper, The Sentinel was where my journalism career began, but to my disillusion, they gave me stories no one else wanted to cover, and after writing one too many I decided to change my major to business. Walking to the business school with papers in my hand made me stop and think, I decided to give journalism one more chance.
My life had turned upside down, and in order to change it right side up I needed an Internship badly, an internship at a big news corporation. A corporation like CNN. To my surprise all the applications were for juniors and seniors only, but that wasn’t going to stop me. After many phone calls, and lengthy applications I got the call of a lifetime. They had picked me to intern at the CNN Headquarters.
My ambition only grew after that. As my second year of university began, I came back to work for the Kennesaw State paper again. News of the president of Ghana, John Dramani Mahama, coming to Kennesaw, circulated the school like wildfire. I asked the editor of the newspaper if I could attend and report on his stay, he refused. He told me that as a sophomore I could not cover it, a story of this magnitude had to be covered by juniors or seniors. I just nodded and left. The day when the president was scheduled to speak I waited for almost two hours until a secret agent came up to me and asked if I was with the press, which I showed my badge and nodded “yes”. He escorted me inside where I saw my editor and gave him a shy grin. His face of disbelief was priceless as he gave me a thumbs up. Not only did I get to meet and ask the president a question at the press conference, but my story made the cover of The Sentinel.
As a reporter, learning about other cultures and people is crucial, so this past year I studied abroad in the Russian Federation. A country that I never thought I would go to.
So from now on I have a new phrase to live by, “Don’t tell people your dreams, show them.”