On April 10, 2019, Debra Mcgaughey came and spoke to the Introduction to Journalism (JOUR) class at the Texas Southern University, Houston, Texas. Ms. Mcgaughey was a journalist, former KHOU Channel 11 TV news anchor and currently Director, Communication Services – Public Information Office, at the Houston Community College – HCC (Central Campus). Having so much experience in different fields, Ms. Mcgaughey was able to give an insight about her life as a journalist.
First, she talked about her life as a college student,when she didn't think she was a good writer until she got a paper back from her professor stating it was a well-written. That gave her the motivation to continue to strive and be the best journalist. Before she officially got into the field of journalism, she would intern and volunteer at news stations. As she interned, she gained more knowledge and experience that she needed to take into the world of journalism. She advised that, “When you are skilled with experience finding a job in the journalism field, it becomes a lot easier. Even if the internship is unpaid, still go to get the training that you need to move up in your career.” On to her career, which she started as at the Channel 11 news anchor, she showed clips and photos of her, where she was live on television. After years of being an anchor, Ms. Mcgaughey decided to work for the Houston Community College as a director for the Communication services.
Hearing someone talk about their career and the journey is very inspiring. It gives others a good feeling and an idea of what is to come, even though everyone journey isn't the same. Ms. Mcgaughey was a perfect example of what students aspire to be. She is someone who has spent most of her life in the journalism field. Just hearing her talk about the obstacles and dedication it took to accomplish being a successful journalist gives young people enough hope to progress . After taking notes and asking questions from a real journalist, I have something to look up to when I need guidance. The encouraging words that she gave us were the motivation that my peers and I needed to hear. She is an inspiring woman and her background and life story was exciting to relate to.
She had many good tips and advice, but what really stood out to me was when she stated “Never underestimate yourself”. Then she tells a story about how she thought her writing wasn’t good and her professor wrote a note on one of her assignments saying the paper was outstanding. This is important because, a lot of people that are aspiring journalist often have doubts in their mind about their work until they actually put themselves out there. Everyone doesn’t get it on the first try so you cannot give up. So, the message that Ms. Mcgaughey gave about “never underestimate yourself” really worked for me. I had doubted my writing as well so I could really relate to her at that moment. She told me to keep practicing and going over my notes and that it will come to me.
Now, after listening to Ms. Mcgaughey journey, I know that if she can do it, I can definitely do it too.Overall, Ms. Mcgaughey made a huge impact on my dreams of becoming a journalist just by listening to one of her speeches. The journey and experiences she had throughout her journalism career was inspiring to me. Also, her being a black woman in that field must be pretty hard, but it gave me the confidence and courage to be able to go for my dreams. It was an honor to have a speaker with so much advice and tips that were helpful to not just myself, but also my peers. The information that was given by her will be used and cherished throughout my journey.