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Gotta have vision

June 4, 2006

Mt. San Antonio College will be hiring a new journalism instructor this summer and already a couple of applicants have asked me for advice. Well, I don’t have a cyrstal ball to tell me what Mt. SAC is looking for, but I’ve done pretty good in the past in counselling journalism job applicants. I’ve been on both sides of the interview table a number of times and have learned a few things.

visionI think the biggest thing for any applicant for journalism teacher at a community college needs to keep in mind is that simply being a competent instructor is not enough. What Mt. SAC or any other community college needs to look for is someone who has a clear vision of what the whole program needs to be. Where is the program now and and where does it need to go? How does one get there with limited resources? Show leadership and confidence. Want some clues, read my previous posts. Today a growing program needs to embrace new media while working within the constraints of the basic community college offerings of the mass media survey course, a beginning newswriting/reporting class and the school newspaper.

And any instructor needs to be able to answer the following question, at least to himself/herself: How do you stay current with what is happening in the industry? What professional groups do you belong to? What do you regularly read? Etc. (Maybe one of the steps should be to read Rich’s Musings on a regular basis.)

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