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So I have a college co-op student...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by NoTalentAndFatToo, May 15, 2007.

  1. Just got him today. He's all mine. I was given no direction on what I'm supposed to do with him--I got an e-mail at noon telling me that he would be in at 3 p.m. and I was supervising him. I've never had a co-op student before that was all mine and I was looking for a little advice on how to best utilize this kid from those that have had a student before.

    From talking to him today I discovered that he just finished his first year of a three year program. He's done "some" work for the student paper and has taken "lots" of writing classes--mostly grammar courses. The journalism specific writing courses come next year.

    No pagination experience or training and little photography training (I sent him to a track meet today and the stuff he brought back was almost useless).

    After he got back from the track meet I had him writing minor sports briefs the rest of the night--not the best learning experience, I'm sure, but...I'm too busy to babysit.

    Anyway...how should I use this kid? Should I view him as someone that needs to be taught everything and give him nothing of importance, ever? Or, should I treat him as a colleague and expect him to produce? Advice? Anyone?
  2. Clever username

    Clever username Active Member

    This ought to be good ...
  3. zagoshe

    zagoshe Well-Known Member

    Well start by making sure he knows where the closest Starbucks, Pizza Joint and Chinese spot is -- so you can send him for your lunch and/or daily cup of caffeine
  4. Oh, I know.

    Having him wash my car did cross my mind (and I did try and pass off the auto racing beat...)
  5. Hand him off to a solid responsible reporter. Have him shadow the reporter for three or four days. He'll be writing on his own by the end of the week.
  6. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    If your (HI ACE) at JRC or CNHI, be nice to him.. he could be your boss by Memorial Day
  7. EE94

    EE94 Guest

    Have him shadow you or someone else for a few days, that's good advice.

    failing that, give him a non-deadline assignment, a story that's not time sensitive. that gives him time to do without so much pressure and you time to edit it and send it back for rewrites - his rewrites - rather than you doing it.
    Students can either be a real pain - know it all sports geeks who aren't real journalists and, as you say, you expend a lot of energy figuring out make-work projects, or real joys to mentor. I've had both.
  8. sportsnut

    sportsnut Member

    If I was you I would tell him what he did wrong with the track meet and how he can improve. Then you send him back out to an event that you don't really need to cover. So if he does a bad job it does not matter. If he improves then you can send him with another reporter and tell him to cover the event as a learning experience. Tell him this will not be published except maybe on your papers website.

    You know he can also sit with you when you do your job and see if he picks anything up.
  9. Tom Petty

    Tom Petty Guest

    trade him in on a model that doesn't suck?
  10. Sell him for food.
  11. Tom Petty

    Tom Petty Guest

    pimp him out for $2.99 subways on tuesdays?
  12. SoSueMe

    SoSueMe Active Member

    Has he asked for a pen and a ride to his first assignment on his first day because "he's out of gas" like ours did a couple weeks ago?
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