The Door to Journalism

A co-facilitator at the University of Georgia summer academy’s journalism camp, Heaven Jobe started her college career with an interest in poetry and creative writing.

“I just really like being free of rules, but also write about whatever I wanted to,” she said.

At the camp, Jobe works alongside Joe Dennis to lead students who are interested in the field of journalism. As a graduate student, journalism -particularly in the health field- has been at the peak of Jobe’s interests, however, that wasn’t always her plan. Jobe’s higher education started with plans of becoming an educator herself majoring in literature, language and writing. She dreamed of teaching an English or creative writing class but it was her minor in theatre arts and communication that lead her into journalism for grad school.

“I wanted to go (back) to school for mass communication because, you know, I did my minor in communication,” Jobe said. “But once I turned in my application to UGA, the admissions reached out to me with this opportunity.”

In her work with Dennis, Jobe has provided a new lens to the camp as someone who is actively teaching and learning the skills of journalism at once. Often, it seems that Dr. Dennis takes on the bulk of the work but observers may notice that Jobe steps up -somewhat essentially- to lead the camp. From being a more relatable voice to many of the students, reminding Dennis to provide definitions for uncommon terms and even providing insight on how to find sources, Jobe has a major role from both a facilitative and educational perspective. Dennis shares some personal insight to his collaboration with Jobe.

“Heaven has been a great asset to teaching this class,” Dennis said. “She’s provided some insight that helped fill in the gaps that I may leave.”

Even as a facilitator, Jobe is transparent about her newness to the field. Often during the camp, she asks questions, takes notes and participates in games for her own benefit. It is this level of engagement that truly lends to Jobe’s relatability and ability to connect with the camp’s students. She speaks on the duality of teaching and learning at the same time.

“I’m still working on my own journalistic (skills),” she says. “You see that I’m asking questions when we’re playing Kahoot, so I’m still wanting to get better and learn but at the same time teach you about my own experiences.”

Regardless of how she got into it, Jobe’s new passion for journalism has proved to benefit her in many ways. She has made connections with people like Dr. Dennis, she has been able to explore the differences in various writing styles and through the camp, she has even delved back into education.

“A door opened and why not walk through it,” Jobe said.

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