Reason for Hope

In a room full of 150 students I asked the question, "how many of you want a job?" A room full of hands went up. It was career day at Cal State Long Beach. I joined other professionals from Southern California on a panel at CSULB's career day. The day long event was typical of other career day events in the past with one big exception. We are in a recession, and traditional print, and brodcast jobs are in short supply. Students wanted to get our insights, and perhaps quell their fears.

Kids have reason to be concerned. Graduation day is a month away, and I wish I had jobs for all of them. The panel of experts which included Robert Suro of USC's Annenberg School for Communication, and Dr. Ricahrd Marcus director of International Studies at CSULB said the traditional business model in media has drastically changed. The problem is we don't fully know what the future holds. That's enough to scare aspiring journalists away from college majors in journalism. However, people learn to adapt.

The talk quickly turned to seeking solutions, and experimenting with new ways of approaching a career in media. I love kids, they have great ideas, and already see the world quite differently from the vision we hold. The generational divide is huge when you consider I still love opening a newspaper, and reading it, versus a young person who surfs for news items on their i-pod. Their vision can spearhead the change we need, or inspire a hybrid adaptation of news, and the internet.

I keep explaining, "this is our mission at New Media Rights." This is a new blog, I need to keep putting that out there. Change is happening now, are we changing the way we work? If not circumstances will force change upon us. Just this week I was reading that companies like Meredith posted a 14 percent drop in revenues. That's followed by a revenue drop at Mcgraw Hill, and Fisher of about 25 percent.

There is reason for hope. I spotted worried faces, but also a bit of confidence. Who knows, they might be the ones who lead us to a new business model, or a new way of publishing the news that people want. Many different concepts were examined at the career day event. Topics like "backpack journishts," and "hyper-local reporting." Something told me these students have the passion to do what it takes to succeed.

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