Initiative

Initiative shown in Loquitur Media


Background:

Initiative is a noun meaning “the ability to assess and initiate things independently.” Looking at that definition, the words that stand out to myself are “initiate” and “independently.”

To my advantage, before coming to Cabrini, I wrote for Padua 360, my high school’s online student newspaper, from September of 2012 to May of 2015. As a staff writer, I was prompted to independently initiate, or, come up with, my own article ideas for one of the four different sections of the newspaper; these included student news, spirituality and service, arts and entertainment and sports.

This practically made initiative a fixed part of my mindset when it comes to news writing, which was necessary in order for me to become an editor. I then passed my knowledge onto sophomore and junior writers as a Padua 360 editor from September 2014 to May 2015, teaching them strategies on how to come up with their own article ideas.

The Beginning:

As a freshman at Cabrini, I had to get required courses out of the way before I could even begin thinking about getting involved in journalism. However, the inner journalist in me could not rest. In the beginning of March during my spring break, my friends bombarded me with texts about rumors of one of Cabrini’s dorm buildings flooding. We shortly found out that the rumors proved to be true, and my first thought was if anyone was going to cover this event for Loquitur. I e-mailed my adviser/head of the Communications department asking if someone was assigned the story or if I could cover it, and he responded, “Go for it!”

With his blessing, I wrote my first Loquitur story, “Woodcrest Hall flood forces students to move,” and took my own photos to go with it. To my surprise, this story made the Loquitur’s front page and also became the top story of Loquitur online. In other words, my Loquitur initiative began before I was even an official part of Loquitur.

2016-2017

Is there is “right” way to watch a concert?
I took the photo for this article in January of 2016 and had been itching to write an article on what it portray’s since then. For my first official article as a Loquitur staff writer, I pitched the idea to write about the issue of phone useage at concerts. One interesting idea I had for this article was to look back in the Loquitur archive on the topic, to which I found an article from 2010 by a former staff writer, Joe Cahill.

Home for the summer: A change for college students and their parents
This article topic was prompted to myself by our editor in chief, Cece Heckman. While we were only required to write three articles over the summer, I took on this third one with my mother, a former Cabrini communications major herself.

Cheers to 6 years of free summer concerts
My initiative for this article started back in February of 2016 and opened up so many doors for myself. After attending Radio 104.5 Winter Jam, I had decided that I wanted my concert watching days from the opposite side of a barricade/press pit to be over. I visited my academic adviser again and asked him how I could begin photographing concerts.

He connected me with a recent Cabrini communications graduate (who happened to be the daughter of my mom’s old Cabrini roomate) that works with iHeart Media at the types of concerts I wanted to photograph. She told me who to talk to at iHeart, and I was blessed with the opportunity to photograph Radio 104.5’s 2016 Summer Block Party Series.

Over the summer, bands including Modern Color, Bishop Briggs and Kaleo showed my photos love over Instagram by commenting on them, reposting them and using them in advertisements. From then on, I then wrote an article on the history of the Summer Block Parties and compiled a video slideshow of my photos together to go with it.

Two months after my article was posted, my friend from iHeart reached out to me saying that her supervisor at iHeart and a DJ from Q102 had seen my photos from the Block Party and wanted me to photograph her wedding. In the middle of October 2016, I then photographed my very first wedding.

Students look to get involved in the 2016-2017 school year
In addition to collecting information for this article during Cabrini’s fall 2016 involvement fair, I also bounced back and forth working the table for Photography Club. This article was finished minutes after the Involvement Fair ended though, and published the same day.

Eat clean and avoid the freshman fifteen in Cavs Corner
In one of my first journalism classes at Cabrini, I prompted this article idea then decided to run with it. With the article, I made a basic healthy eating plan that students could follow Monday through Friday in our cafeteria.

The COM LC barbeque lives on
Finished this article by the time that the event was finished itself.

2016 Presidential Debate through the eyes of Cabrini and Hofstra 
Came up with the idea for this article after finding out that the first presidential debate was going to be held at Hofstra University, where one of my good friends goes to school. I worked with my friend to collect information on what it was like to be at Hofstra during the days leading up to and the day of the debate, then collaborated that information with my own from being a student at a school like Cabrini during the same time. She also sent me photos of her and her friends in which a collaborated into a video to pair with my story.

Snapchat: The mentally abusive social media platform
After deleting Snapchat myself at the beginning of the school year and feeling how much it positively impacted me mentally, I came up to with this article idea because I wanted to see how others felt about the app. One of my good friends deleted Snapchat shortly after I did, and then his friend did as well. I started a small chain reaction,  and my friend then connected me to his friend for an interview about her feedback. The interview ended up being very emotional, which moreso made it very successful and ended up shaping my article as a whole. The article got a lot of buzz and positive feedback on Facebook from my friends and interview sources sharing it to their feeds.

Dr. Thomas Sugrue: 2016 Joylon Pitt Girard Speaker
Dr. Thomas Sugrue walked into my American Presidency course one day to speak as a honorable guest speaker. After his introduction, I realized how important he truly was and that having him on Cabrini’s campus was something that should be covered. I asked my adviser if I could write the story on him, in which he responded, “Initiative!” I took that as a yes, and wrote a story on Dr. Thomas Sugrue speaking in my course, and as the recipient of the 2016 Joylon Pitt Girard Scholar in Residence as a whole. This included setting aside time to interview him, and attending his keynote address.

 

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