Discussing the Digital Media Landscape at Texas State

26 Apr

Last week, I visited Texas to do a talk at Texas State University, my alma mater, and to attend a conference in Austin, which I’ll go over in my next post. It had been a few years since I visited Texas State and it was nice to be back at my old college campus.

Lyndon Baines Johnson statue

A statue of Lyndon Baines Johnson, the 36th president of the United States and a Texas State alumnus. He was editor of The College Star (now The University Star) during his time there.

A lot has changed since I went to school there, like the massive football stadium and the new buildings that have sprouted up around the campus, but a few things have stayed the same.

Before the talk, I stopped by The University Star, the university’s newspaper, to meet the staff and to reminisce with the adviser, Bob Bajackson. Bob was the adviser throughout my time at the paper, where I made my way up the ranks to become editor in chief my last year of undergrad. He recounted some of the struggles they have faced with ad revenue, just like any other newspaper. (I should mention, The University Star is unique in that it is a self-sustaining entity at the university, which permits it some freedoms it wouldn’t otherwise have.) The broadsheet is smaller, but despite these struggles, the student journalists there have been at the helm of its digital evolution. It was good to see that they shared a strong passion for journalism, no matter its form.

The talk that evening was part of the Digital Media Entrepreneurship Speaker Series, which has featured some stellar speakers. Dr. Cindy Royal, my former professor, mentor and friend, invited me to speak when she last visited New York in January, and I was flattered to be a part of such a roster.

I was interviewed by Jordon Brown, a current Texas State graduate student. We discussed my path from Texas State to The New York Times, and I took some questions from students, whose queries ranged from what digital skills were important for a job like mine at The Times to what it was like to live in New York. You can watch the video below for the full discussion.


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