Jennifer Sudick (4th Quarter, 2005)

4th Quarter, 2005
Communications Scholarship Winner
Jennifer Sudick

Sudick, a native of Sandpoint, Idaho, graduated from the School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Oregon in June and has interned at three newspapers. Her most recent stint was on the business desk at The Spokesman-Review in Washington. She worked at her college newspaper, the Oregon Daily Emerald, for nearly four years, spending her senior year as editor in chief. Sudick thoroughly enjoys all aspects of journalism and also dabbles in page design and Web site creation.

A Portion of Jennifer’s Winning Essay:

Jennifer Sudick
Jennifer Sudick

I come from a family of mathematicians and engineers. No one quite knows why I signed up for a journalism class in high school or reported for the newspaper and yearbook. When I call home, the words “dummying” and “putting it to bed” spark all sorts of questions.

During my four years as an undergraduate student at the University of Oregon, I developed a hunch about my relationship with news. I love to communicate. Not in the romance novel or guidebook sense, but in the blunt, investigative talk seemingly inseparable from newsrooms.

I applied to the campus newspaper as a copy editor two terms into my first year. After I was hired, my grandfather looked sternly at me and said he’d congratulate me when I was running the operation. I laughed. Two years later, after serving as a freelance reporter, copy chief and as the freelance editor, I was elected editor in chief. I spearheaded a major redesign, restructured the news desk and fought for higher pay for my 50 employees. It was a truly rewarding experience.

Notepad in one hand, bucket in the other, I’ve learned to milk a cow while trying to catch quotes. I’ve sipped cold coffee with a dozen retirees in a doughnut shop while listening to years of friendship manifest in war stories. I’ve also exchanged grins with a fellow copy editor after finding an error in a veteran reporter’s story. Sometimes I can’t believe I’m paid to do this.

During the summers, I gained news, features and business reporting experience at three separate internships — the most recent as a business desk reporter at The (Spokane, Wash.) Spokesman-Review.

Through discussing story ideas, writing articles and working with diverse staffs I have expanded on my writing, leadership and interpersonal skills. My dedication to journalism has earned me numerous Oregon Daily Emerald newsroom awards and a leadership award from the University of Oregon.

The knowledge I have taken from my newsroom experience and from discussions in courses such as grammar, information gathering and media ethics has helped me decide to specialize in news-editorial and continue my education as a graduate student at the Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism.

My journalism skills will forever be developing, but I know that all the deadlines, newsrooms, editors and grammatical nuances that journalism encompasses have become an inseparable and welcome part of who I am. By taking on the challenges of applying to my undergraduate college paper, interning and being accepted into one of the best graduate journalism schools in the country, I have begun to forge my own path in this profession — one that I hope takes me beyond basic press release rewrites and into in-depth financial reporting.

I hope to one day work as a business reporter at a major national paper such as The New York Times, but for now, I am excited to know that I am growing beyond my early experiences with newspaper writing and editing.

Copyright 2009, All rights reserved.

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