My whole life, I’ve always been a planner.
I’ve known I wanted to be a journalist since I was 11 — a bright-eyed student who just got her first taste of “journalism” by doing the TV announcements at her elementary school.
At that age, I wanted to be the next Katie Couric. Her $17 million salary was what convinced me to stay on that path.
It’s funny now looking back at that goal. Most journalists these days would be lucky to make $50,000 in one year, let alone $17 million.
Though my aspiration of being a television reporter has changed over the years, I’ve still maintained one objective — I want to be a journalist.
I made it my mission to reach that goal in any way I could. This included working as Editor-in-Chief at my high school newspaper, The Vanguard, as well as my college newspaper, The Oakland Post.
I majored in journalism. I got an internship and landed a copy editing job at The Oakland Press. Upon graduation, I had a job offer as the Editor of two newspapers in Washtenaw County.
But for my ambitious Katie Couric kid at heart, that wasn’t enough.
For the first time since those elementary school days, I’m stuck. I’m at a fork in the road and I’m not sure which path to take.
I got my acceptance letter into the Master’s in Communication program at Oakland University last week. I applied for it a few months ago, shortly before this road block first hit — when I had plans to continue my role as Editor at my college paper, and a few months after enrolling and then backing out of the October LSAT.
Getting that hand-signed piece of paper threw me off my path last week. It’s made me think.
There are three paths I’m interested in currently: I want to teach journalism at the collegiate level; I want to continue my work as an editor and become a prestigious journalist (Katie Couric salary or not); and I want to go to law school to study and practice media law.
I know I could multi-task — I’ve been doing it for years. The idea of working and going to school doesn’t sound awful, but I know that if I go back to school, I don’t want to leave without as close to a 4.0 as I can get.
I also don’t want to jump into a huge pool of debt. I was already fortunate enough to walk away with my bachelor’s degree from Oakland without a single penny of debt, thanks to a full-ride scholarship. I fear that if I go back to school now (for either my Master’s or JD), something’s going to happen where I’ll need to invest a large lump sum of money into something else, like a car.
For the first time in years, I don’t have a plan. And it’s making me crazy.