When I first declared my major to English and Journalism at Cal U, I was not expecting what I was in for. Everything about AP Style contradicts anything I had previously learned in my English classes since I can remember. Any time I have an English class in college that is not a Journalism based class, my professors constantly catch me turning MLA style into AP formatting and have to correct me all of the time when I am writing my papers and essays. Capitalization, punctuation, addresses, names and titles are all different and I am constantly having to check my AP Style Guide (AKA the Journalistic Bible) for corrections and accuracy when I am writing like a journalist. Spelling out numbers and when to do so confuses me, and also ages. Titles are hard to distinguish, too, and sometimes when you're using the title of "Dr." you don't use it when you're not talking about someone who is a medical doctor. A professor at a college such as "Dr. Ross" would not be used in a title for journalistic style. It comes in handy and I have been using it for the past three years. I will most likely use it for the rest of my journalistic career, too. Overall, I really enjoy being challenged by journalism style and I like dealing with AP Style in the classes that I have and have had, even though it may be frustrating sometimes.
It’s 12:30 a.m, you just got off of work and you have to walk to your dorm room on
the opposite side of campus, completely alone. Scary? According to some students on California
University of Pennsylvania’s campus, this is exactly how they feel.
For others, it all depends.
Peyton Longhurst, 19, a sophomore at Cal U, is a student with a job off
campus serving at Speers Street Grille, and sometimes gets back to campus at 2
“Every time I have to walk to and from the river lot at night, I do not
feel safe at all. There are maybe three emergency stations in that area, but they are all in the parking lot,” Longhurst said. “Sometimes I have a friend come pick me up from my car because I’m that uncomfortable walking up to my dorm room alone. The campus isn’t well lit between the river lot and my dorm, and it’s really scary for a 19 year-old-girl.” Not all students at Cal feel completely unsafe, however.
Suzy Hart, 20, a junior education major explains that she doesn’t think
it’s unsafe to walk from campus to her apartment behind the beer
“I make sure to stay on Third Street where there is a lot of lighting
until I get to my street, and as long as I have my phone and am aware of my surroundings I am ok,” Hart said. “I have never felt unsafe at Cal U, personally.”
However, recent events such as a reported armed robbery Sept. 30 around 9 p.m. on Plum
Way in California Borough cause citizens to be alert. Police since have said they are suspicious the robbery even occurred.
Detective Michael Hampe of University Police said his department has taken the measures to ensure the safety of each student when incidents such as the alleged robbery happen.
"We put all of the residence halls and buildings on lock-down. Signs are posted and email and text alerts are sent out the same night as the incident,” Hampe said. “We also have longer shifts for patrol on campus and in the borough.”
Hampe also said students and residents of California may be more concerned about something happening to them while walking through town.
Theresa Kulasa, 18, a freshman biology and pre-med major, agreed with Hampe’s
“My current situation right now is a little more nerve-wracking because I
don’t have a working cell phone, so when I walk to and from my friends’ houses
off-campus at night it now makes me a lot more anxious in case something was to
happen to me,” she said.
Kulasa also stated she does feel campus police are doing everything they
can to make everyone who lives in the California area feel
“Even though I was a little nervous walking to and from classes
this morning, I still felt safe knowing that the police officers were patrolling
around campus, keeping an eye out for us,” she said.
Over the past semester, I have gotten the chance to experience numerous different journalistic style stories and cover them in class. We have done police reporting, which I have learned is one of the more difficult types of reporting because sometimes the police do not want to cooperate or give you the information that you need to make a good story. Another thing we did was go to a few different types of meetings: council meetings and school board meetings. Sometimes both of these can be somewhat difficult as well because most of the time there is not a lot of information to even cover and make into a story. Then, my favorite part of the semester was when we went to the Brownsville Courthouse and sat in on a few hearings and got to experience first hand (on a smaller scale) what it would be like to deal with criminals and people who have had charges brought against them. I honestly would recommend TIME MANAGEMENT to all future Newspaper Reporting students. There are a lot of stories due in a short period of time and if you do not have them accomplished before then, you are for a lack of better words, screwed. This was a great class however, because not many classes give you the hands-on experience that you will be using in the future for your major anyway!
AP style and I have a love-hate relationship with one another. My whole life, I have been raised to understand MLA formatting, and then I got to college. As soon as I declared my major as English with a concentration in Journalism, I knew things would change. There is almost absolutely nothing about AP style that is similar to MLA formatting. Once you grasp the hang of AP style though, your life becomes a little easier. Everything you do as a journalist revolves around the AP Style Book. It is like the Bible for journalists. I use it constantly while writing for my classes and the school newspaper. The difference between numbers and abbreviations and titles is very difficult to understand at first. But over the past two years as a journalism major I have grown as a writer and the AP Style Guide has helped me along the way. Anyone else reading a paper written in AP style must look at me and think I'm crazy, and when I try and explain it they never understand.
On Monday, November 1, 2013, my Newspaper Reporting class took a trip to The Office of Magisterial District Judge Joshua P. Kanalis, Magisterial District Number 27-3-03. It wasn't what you might imagine it to be because it wasn't similar to what you see on television at all. The judge and his District Attorney, Josh Carroll, didn't really have much to do since every case that came into the court room seemed to be dismissed or waived. Carroll did have quite the jokester attitude, however, and there wasn't a dull moment with those two.
Blogging is important for numerous reasons in journalism. For one, blogging seems to integrate with journalism well. It gives the journalist a place to elaborate on certain topics that is available to the World Wide Web. It is also important to blog because blogs give a place for the journalist to post links to other websites for further information to readers.
Blogging is a way to express yourself and your expertise on certain topics, and give readers a chance to give their input, depending on how the blog is set up. Blogging can also be used to reference for a job in the future. The internet has taken journalism and news to a whole new level, and gives a much bigger audience to get information out there!
By KATE SHELDON
PHOTO BY KATE SHELDON