I will say this right away: money is not something I obsess over. That is not to say I am not responsible with it. I am clarifying that I do not mind having a career that does not generate tons of money that some people dream of.
Journalists do not make a lot of money. However, there is an appeal of attending events and meeting new people. Maybe I am attracted to the sense-making aspect of journalism because I have yet to make complete sense of my own life.
I have always had a passion for writing, but when I was in high school certain relatives told me I would never make money as a writer. All they cared about was money, but I envisioned having a little more fulfillment in my life. Almost all of my relatives thought the idea was silly, except for my mom.
I used to stay up late and watch “Saturday Night Live” with my mom when I was in high school. She would tell me, “Emily, I can vision you being a writer for Saturday Night Live. You have such good humor and are able to create such interesting stories.”
Originally, I was enrolled in UWSP as an English major, but with nagging comments from friends and relatives at that time, I temporarily trashed my dream of becoming a writer. I settled for biochemistry because everyone said it was where the jobs and money were.
I was good at chemistry and decent at math, but my heart was not there.
In the first semester of my junior year, I knew I needed to get back into writing. I was getting a ‘D’ in calculus and barely scarping by with a ‘C-‘ in human physiology. This is coming from a former 4.0 student.
I was doing poorly because I was not happy. After talking on the phone with my mom for two and a half hours in the basement of Smith Hall, I decided I had to switch my major to something that would help me become a journalist.
In October 2013, I remember talking with Carol Lanphear-Cook in Student Academic Advising Center and she told me a Communication major with a media studies emphasis would be the best fit for me.
My journey to become a journalist really took off when my adviser Steve Hill told me to attend one of The Pointer meetings. I began as a contributor who mostly wrote for Pointlife or Arts and Entertainment.
I began earning A’s in classes again because I was happy with what I was doing. In the summer of 2014 I found out I was going to be the Pointlife editor, and I could not have been happier.
This past year, I wrote 40 articles within the first semester, lost track in the second and edited countless articles. It was so much fun for me, I forgot I got paid. It is not about money for me. It is something I enjoy doing and I do not think I could live without.
This weekend, my mom came to the Communication Awards Banquet and said she was so proud of me. I am excited to walk on May 16, but at some points I thought, “I have to go to another event? Just mail me my damn diploma.”
It has been a whirl wind during college and I am ecstatic to step into the next phase of my life.
After I graduate, I will be searching for a job which will hopefully be as fulfilling as my position was at The Pointer. I am a writer and nothing can change that.
Emily Noèl Showers