The coolest part about the Missourian semester is that students write on a beat. We get to specialize, immerse ourselves and learn a weirdly specific amount about certain topics. Part of that immersion, however, means knowing where you’re going. What better way to learn than to tromp around downtown?
Learn by doing. It’s the Missouri Method way, after all.
So at 8 a.m. on the day I was supposed to talk about my adventures in class, I started my adventures. (I’m working on my procrastination issues)(Promise)
The assignment: find the courthouse, the university police station and the city police station. Find the blotters in both station. Go through security at the courthouse and find the clerk’s office. Don’t get lost. Take selfies out front.
Take selfies while in public outside of important institutions I will be frequenting during my reporting semester? Look like a stereotypical 20something? Katherine, you’ve raised the bar.
It was weird, let me tell you. I’m a self-described selfie queen, but I’m not one for public snapshots when I’m by myself. I tried not to look too preppy for 8:17 a.m. on a Thursday or too much like I was casing a scene for later, potentially sketchy activities.
I see the benefit of this assignment, though. I couldn’t have put this off and said “I’ll find them when I need them.” Partly because this assignment required photographic evidence, and partly because I wouldn’t have gone later. I would have waited until I was on my way to an interview and had given myself not option but to sprint, late and panicked. Granted, I already knew where two of the three institutions were, but it was great to have a time check-in. Exactly how fast can I walk to the MUPD blotter in the morning? How long does it take to get to the courthouse? Is there a shortcut?
I am careful to avoid being ill-prepared for interviews. I do my research, I draft questions, I poke around. I don’t always think of preparing to find the building in which I am conducting an interview. After hearing a horror story of a reporter getting lost and showing up 15 minutes late to a 20-minute interview, knowing where I’m going is definitely advice I’m going to take to heart.
(Note: this assignment is old. I’m just now getting around to actually writing the blog. About that procrastination thing…)