Adviser Update Summer 2016 - Page 31

31 take journalism classes. Too often, Twitter and Facebook diminish good writing skills. 3. Expect better reporting. Too many stories I judge do not show reporting skills. Too much information is taken from the Internet, not from firstperson interviews. Good sources and good direct quotes are MUSTS for good stories. Ron Clemons 1997 DJNF TOY I thought, would I suggest to advisers to work less, to set strict limits on their time spent with students? No. learning your number-one priority, and everything else will take care of itself. Explanation: I think in a publicationbased classroom (a.k.a. project-based learning environment) people often lose sight of the goal of learning. They often mistake the primary goal as the end product. Do not get me wrong, that is extremely important, but it should not be the only measuring stick for the success of a newspaper, yearbook or broadcast class. Trial and error is key to learning, and it is the fundamental building block of the next generation of successful citizens. Chris Waugaman 2014 DJNF TOY Would I tell them not to worry about meeting deadlines or pushing hard for quality work or how to grade their staff members? No. Would I tell them they should not have to deal with angry coaches, complaining classroom teachers and controlling administrators? Nope. As crazy as it all sounds, it is when you teach with passion and abandon the students and the principles of ethical, real journalism that undeniably, conflict will arise. It toughens you. It gives you purpose and resolve. You develop creative thinking, problem solving skills and better conflictmanagement abilities. This job of being a publication adviser is one wild, crazy ride. Give everything to it. The students are worth it, and you’ll have memories to last a lifetime (or to fill a book). A life well lived. Terry Nelson 2001 DJNF TOY My advice is this: always make Do not sweat the small stuff. It is pretty easy to get bogged down in the minutiae of journalism, but the reality is that no one is perfect and staffs need to make mistakes sometimes to aid in their learning. I have one rule, and it is “Do not get me fired.” Style errors and design problems and the like, while sometimes embarrassing, are all fixable. However, students will not learn from their mistakes if you spend all of your time fixing them. Let students learn and grow from those experiences, both positive and negative. Jim Stresisel 2013 DJNF TOY Take it slow. Realize that it is a marathon and not a sprint. I think too often, advisers see how many things need work and get overwhelmed. Everything does not have to be perfect tomorrow. Things do not have to all be fixed by week’s end. Take things slow. Do them right. Do not lose sight of the larger picture or that this job can and should be a lot of fun. Aaron Manfull 2011 DJNF TOY A couple of years ago, I was excited to learn that one of my former government/economics students had been hired as an English teacher and the yearbook adviser at a school where I used to be the newspaper guy. “Awesome!” I said to myself. “She’ll be terrific, and with some mentoring and experience, she’ll become an absolutely amazing adviser.” She lasted one year. So, my one piece of advice to advisers, especially to newbies, is ... breathe. Just ... breathe. It is so easy to be overwhelmed with all the things that you have to do as an adviser (to say nothing of what has to happen to stay on top of other non-advising classes you’re teaching). It’s easy to end up feeling like you are not doing enough, like you are failing the students, like you are not measuring up. Trust me, you are not a failure, and you are almost certainly doing all you can do. I mean, how many other folks were jumping up and down, screaming “Me! Me, me, me! Pick me!” when it was time to choose a journalism adviser on your campus? Exactly.