With a microphone in hand and a camera in tow, you may have watched many reporters on TV fearlessly traveling through places, talking to people, risking their own life– all to get us the information and to help us understand the implications of the facts. While you and I tuck ourselves in the safe confines of our homes during times of crisis, reporters and journalists are out there in the field gathering news, to package and transmit/broadcast it for the general public. They may be associated with print, radio, television, or digital media.
Reporters are our window to the world. While it may seem like an exciting job, it does come with a lot of risks, as well as responsibility.
Journalism plays a crucial role in the development of the nation, despite the hyperbole that exists in our society today about what is or what may not be fake news.
With the advent of the internet, journalism jobs have evolved over the last two decades, and the scope for careers in journalism, reporting, and news analysis is higher than ever before.
The post-pandemic era skyrocketed the consumption of media. With the world confined to their homes due to the pandemic, the dependency on journalism has increased like never before. People from across the globe depend on news channels to keep updated with the latest happenings and events in the world. Considering the growing popularity of mass communication mediums, there’s an ever-increasing scope for aspirants in the field of Journalism and Mass Communication.
How to Become a News Analyst, Reporter, or Journalist
If you’re a news junkie or just someone with insatiable curiosity, a media job may be your calling. Here's how you can become a news analyst, reporter, or journalist.
- Make High School Count: While in high school, sharpen your writing and speaking skills through English, speech, and drama classes. Clear communication is the key to success in this line of work. You may write for the school newspaper/magazine to find out if this really is the career for you. If the answer is yes, sign up for computer class and get up to speed on word processing and graphic design programs. Some media jobs may require you to know a thing or two about computerized page layout.
- Earn a Bachelor's Degree: Aspiring news reporters and analysts may earn a bachelor's degree in journalism, mass communications, or English. Coursework in journalistic principles, news writing, and television production provides a solid foundation for a career in the field. Students may also consider taking classes in public speaking, political science, economics, and sociology.
- Seek an Internship: College students and recent graduates may want to seek internships, whether paid or unpaid, to gain on-the-job experience. Internships introduce students to news-gathering operations and increase understanding of the complex world of news production.
- Obtain an Entry-Level Position: According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), smaller television stations provide the best opportunities for securing employment. Television reporters cover all types of news, including stories about community events, personal achievements, crime, government, and tragedies. These entry-level positions help aspiring news analysts polish their interviewing, writing, and on-camera reporting techniques. With some experience and after having demonstrated exceptional performance on the job, reporters may even have the opportunity to fill in for news analysts.
- Opt for a Master’s Degree or Post-Graduate Diploma: Some employers seek candidates with a master's degree in journalism and mass communication. To get an edge over other candidates or seek senior job roles, opt for a master’s degree or a post-graduate diploma.
- Advancement: After gaining experience, field reporters at a local news station may become that station’s anchor. News analysts, reporters, and journalists may also advance by moving from news organizations in small cities or towns to news organizations in large cities. Large markets may offer opportunities for more responsibility and challenges. Reporters and journalists also may become editors or news directors.
Remember, the one skill that’s most important to excel as a news analyst, reporter, or journalist is to have the Ears, Eyes, and Nose for News!