Digital Journalism – Batsell is the bomb

As I wrap up another wonderful semester at SMU, I get to reflect on a class that I took that I felt was absolutely essential in pursuing that nerve-wracking, somewhat dreaded, always exciting “next step” in my life. For the first time in my life, there hasn’t been a definitive next step. After elementary school, it was getting ready to switch classes in the middle school setting. Then, it was preparation for high school. Then college apps, then college, etc, etc, etc.

But as I fly home on my last ever “Christmas break” from school (well, unless grad school happens…), I get to reflect on that. However, this is not what this about.

Rather, I want to reflect – gush, rather – on the course that I just wrapped up at SMU taught by Professor Jake Batsell, Digital Journalism. It is a j-school capstone class, one that is comprised of mainly seniors. From guest speakers who graduated from SMU who are now working in the field to his regular lectures, I learned a great deal from this course. Regardless of what I’ll be doing in 5, 10, 50 years, I know that the knowledge and heart that Batsell instilled in us this semester will live with me forever. There were more takeaways from this course than your average college course (not that SMU has any of these, however).

Batsell is technological wizard with a heart of gold. So, THUS, he was able to help me through some of my struggles with the technical elements of the class that didn’t come as easily to me (I wasn’t the only one). No, coding is not my forte, but he taught me to have confidence with it and I know that I’ll use at least a bit of this in the future (or maybe a lot!). Only time will tell.

Most importantly, he was able to take a look at my StageD214 Blogsite for my Engaged Learning Project and give his opinion on it. He gave me suggestions that I could incorporate almost immediately. I am very grateful for his help in this area, as I hope that my blog will continue as an outlet and resource for SMU students for a long time.

In the spring, I’ll be taking an advertising course called Technology Marketing and Advertising, which I assume will be an extension of Digital. Professor Mark Bunting, a former TV host, will teach the class, and I am looking forward to what I can learn from him!


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