EDUCATION

Column: A University of Mississippi freshman’s path to journalism and writing

DeLakin Crawford

DaLakin Crawford
Oxford Stories
dkcrawfo@go.olemiss.edu

Prior to attending Ole Miss, I decided to major in broadcast journalism due to my passion for writing. Since I have been a part of the School of Journalism and New Media, I have decided to minor in English.

While growing up in Bay Springs, Mississippi, I attended a Baptist Training Union Congress every summer, which required me to learn a two- to three-page speech and recite it in front of a crowd. At first, I was not too fond of doing that because it seemed as if it was too much. However, I grew to enjoy reciting the speeches as I became older because I enjoyed talking during my childhood, as well as now.

I gained a passion for writing during junior high, seventh grade to be exact. That is when I began learning how to write essays correctly because we had to write essays on our state test. One teacher would assign us an essay every other week. Sometimes the essays would be about a book we read, while others would be about a general topic. Every time we wrote an essay, the content would come to me naturally. I did not have to work too hard to get my thoughts on paper. At the time, I did not think much of my ability because I was still young, and I only had one goal in mind, which was to do well on my essays.

When I transitioned to high school, during my first two years to be exact, I was introduced to higher levels of English and writing. The papers and content became more difficult, but I still enjoyed writing. I had to adjust to the different rules and standards of the higher level because it was not what I was familiar with. Before entering high school, I only wrote essays based off of writing prompts in which I had to answer the question and provide quotes from a passage to support my idea. That changed when I went to high school because I had to write cause and effect, compare and contrast, and argumentative essays. After adjusting to the higher levels, everything started coming to me easy.

During my junior year of high school, I took English Composition I. I enjoyed the class because the work and essays that we were assigned interested me. One of the first essays I wrote for the class was a narrative about an obstacle that occurred in my life and how I overcame it. I ended up making an A on my first college paper, and that boosted my confidence. After finishing English Composition I, I realized I enjoyed writing and I should consider taking it to the next level.


At this point in my life, I was unsure what I wanted to continue my educational career in. Initially, I wanted to become a physical trainer until I realized that it may be difficult for me to get the job that I wanted in that field. I began weighing my options, although I did not want to. To be honest, no particular field of study ever captured my attention. If someone would have asked me four years ago if I would become a journalist, the answer would have more than likely been “no.”

I always knew I was going to attend college, but that was the only thing I knew. I also knew that whatever career I chose, I wanted to be involved with sports because that it something that I enjoy watching and being a part of. That is, in fact, why I initially wanted to become a physical trainer. Now my specialization is in Sports Communication and Promotion.

Although I wanted my career to be involved within sports in some way, I have grown to enjoy covering different topics since I have taken some journalism courses. Therefore, I chose my emphasis to be TV and Video Storytelling because I could basically cover anything on the news with that particular emphasis. I chose TV and video storytelling as an emphasis because I have always enjoyed talking, writing, and being on camera, and I do not believe that I would get bored being a news reporter.

I am confident I chose the field of study that fits me because it is something that I enjoy doing. Even though I am a freshman, I have received confirmation in various ways that has assured me that I am fit for being a journalist. I aspire to someday become a sports reporter on ESPN or a news reporter on Good Morning America.

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