Showing posts with label college. Show all posts
Showing posts with label college. Show all posts

Thursday, February 28, 2013

My forensics experiences in school

As a preschooler, you always liked to play act and participate in plays whenever we went to theater programs at the library or at any of the many great places we visited (especially Disneyland). That you weren't much afraid of speaking in front of others doesn't surprise me much!

Why? Because when in school I often participated in speaking contests. During high school, I was in debate and took part in a number of FFA and other agricultural speaking contests.

Once I got to college, I competed in intercollegiate forensics. You give speeches in front of others and then judges decide who gave the best one - you or your competitiors. I excelled in speeches that you had to make up on the spot; they were called extemperaneous and impromptu speaking. My college also had an honorary forensics society - Delta Signma Rho-Tau Kappa Alpha - of which I was president!

Maybe one day you will go out for forensics or theater, too!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Going on to college (in 12-1/2 years!)

Award I received in college.
Where will you go to college?
Today is the first full day that you are six years old! You ae growing up very fast. Soon you will be in junior high and then high school and then on to whatever you choose to do in adulthood.
I hope that your first choice will be to go on the college. You are a very intelligent and creative young boy, and those are the very characteristics one needs to do well in college and to succeed in life.

These days, there are very few jobs one can have or dreams one can achieve without a college education. What you study there does not matter so much as you study something that you feel passionate about.

I thoroughly enjoyed going to college and have two degrees. My first is a Bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls in which I studied English, journalism and education. About a decade later, I earned the next higher degree, a Master's Degree, from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point in English and education.

College may seem like a long way off, but I'm looking forward to that day when you walk across your university stage and are given your degree (also known as a diploma). I will be so very proud of you!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

My very first job after college

After college, my first big job was with the newspaper in Red Wing, Minn. I was offered the job in April, about a month before I graduated from college, and I actually started before I'd finished taking my final exams!

I got my very first apartment in Red Wing. It was very large - two bedrooms - and there was a small farm with horses next to it (the apartment building was at the city's edge). In the morning when I'd wake up, I could hear the horses neighing in the background while I enjoyed breakfast.

At the newspaper, I covered Wisconsin news for the paper, which meant writing about Pierce and Pepin counties, where the Red Wing paper was circulated. I also was a copy editor once a month, working on Friday nights editing and designing the Saturday edition.

Interestingly, I can't seem to find any pcitures of my time in Red Wing!

Monday, December 10, 2012

My teaching, journalism internships

While in college, I studied journalism and English but also took many courses about teaching. My college degree actually is a Bachelors of Science in Education.

This allowed me lots of flexibility when I graduated. With my journalism and English majors, I could go into communications - such as newspapers, magazines, book publishing, public relations, etc. With my education degree, I could teach English or journalism to grades 7-12.

In fact, I spent a semester of my college years (Sept.-Dec. 1988) teaching English and journalism to high school students! I did my "student teaching" at Park High School in Cottage Grove, Minn.

I also did an internship at a newspaper. The summer before I student taught (June-Aug 1988), I worked as a copy editor at the Duluth (Minn.) News-Tribune.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

My involvement in college forensics

While in college, I was actively involved in forensics - or speaking contests (Not the science of how people died, which is another definition of the word!). I participated in forensics during the first four years of college.

At first, my big events were prepared serious speeches, such as communication analysis, informative, and persuasive speaking. My speeches included an analysis of Carl Sagan's "Cosmos", toothpaste, and bilingual education.

But my biggest success came in making up speeeches off the top of my head, specifically extemporaneous speaking and impromptu speaking. In extemp, you're given a political question and have 30 minutes to write a speech about it; you can use one note card. In impromptu speaking, you're given a quotation and have up to 2 minutes to come up with a 5 minute speech about it. In both categories, I took second place in state during spring 1988 and went on to nationals.

I also was president of my campus' honorary forensics society, Delta Sigma Rho-Tau Kappa Alpha.

Monday, December 3, 2012

My work as campus newspaper editor

Campus newspaper offices
During college, I was the editor of my campus newspaper. The paper was called the Student Voice.

I began just helping the newspaper staff on Wednesday nights during my freshman year. Then I was asked to be the Arts and Entertainment editor, which I did during my sophomore year. In March of that year, I was named editor, a position I held for the next 12 months.

While the editor, I oversaw a staff of 72, redesigned the newspaper, and expanded its size to include more stories. It was a lot of work, and I had to cut back on my class load to make time for it all!

It also was a lot of fun. Many good friends were made during that time, and I learned a lot about newspapers, my abilities, and how to be a leader.

Maybe one day you would like to work on a publication, like a newspaper or a magazine?

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Why you should go to college

As you begin school this week, you're starting a long journey in your formal education. I hope that I've already instilled in you that you'll go to college, but just in case years from you you must ask the question "Should I go to college?" and I'm not there, my answer is "Yes!"

I can give you all of the tried and true reasons to go to college, such as "You'll earn more money with a college education"; "You can't find a good job without a college education"; or "The girls alone are worth it!" But really the main reason to go to college is to take a few years to explore the world in depth and by doing so to learn about yourself.

We never really stop growing as individuals, but college can give you lots of different experiences - through what you read, by meeting other people, via exploring all that you can learn through the arts - that'll you'll never get anywhere else, especially once you start working and raising a family. These experiences will help you answer lots of difficult questions about ourselves, such as "Who am I?"; "What's my purpose?"; and "What do I really want to do in life?"

You may not find all the answers, but the journey an educational environment like college offers will help you come closer to figuring it all out. So give it a try - I bet you'll enjoy it!