On Friday my Mobile and Social Media Journalism class was given the opportunity to Skype in with successful Ithaca ’12 Alum, Aaron Edwards. Aaron majored in journalism at Ithaca College and began his career after graduation working at the New York Times. He is now in the process of transitioning jobs to Buzzfeed to write and work on the new online and mobile social media features that the company is debuting.
Having the opportunity to Skype with Aaron was extremely beneficial as he provided our class with some relevant and true advice for starting off at a new job, breaking into the journalism industry, and even how to handle the stress of not having a clear answer as to where you are headed post graduation.
Aaron clearly is doing very well for himself so soon after graduating, and it was reassuring to see a Park student putting to use some of his talents and skills developed here at IC. While Aaron gave plenty of useful tips for entering into the work force, one piece of advice that truly resonated with me was emphasis on the importance of putting your head down and getting your work done when beginning a new job. Aaron said that too often the expectations had for networking and advancing quickly are set extremely high. Often, those who are more dedicated to the even seemingly mundane work in the beginning are noticed more than those attempting to make immediate connections when they have yet to earn their place.
Aaron also mentioned that though he did not see himself ever not working as a reporter he was intrigued by the job offer, kept an open mind, and now loves what he is doing. I completely agree with Aaron, intrigue and open mindedness will ultimately always bring more opportunities than being close off.
Aaron also mentioned to stay confident in your own abilities, after all there is a reason that you were hired in the first place.
It is no secret that entering into the field of professional employment without the safety bubble of college is slightly terrifying. But being able to chat with an IC grad who is effectively paving his own path is inspiring and extremely comforting. Just remember to trust your own instinct, keep an open mind, and there is no way you will not succeed.
“Give people a reason to come to you, and don’t give them a reason to ignore you.”-Aaron Edwards
Connect with Aaron on twitter @aaronmedwards