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  • New Opportunities

    Ingelhart Scholars undergo an enhanced experience in the Department of Journalism.

  • New Friends

    Ingelhart Scholars develop bonds and unique friendships that are kept throughout their college career.

  • Quality Education

    Ingelhart Scholars are leaders, held to high standards in Ball State’s journalism classes.


student stories


Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful.

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| Stephanie Meredith |

Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful.

That is all I could think when I woke up in Denver a couple weeks ago. From the mountains, to the clear sky and the majestic skyscrapers, no other description seemed fitting.

My name is Stephanie and I am a sophomore here at Ball State. I am heavily involved in quite a few organizations on campus: News Scholars, the Ball State Daily News, American Advertising Federation (AAF) and Society for News Design (SND).

However, between balancing school with all of these extracurriculars, I cut a few days out of my schedule and headed out west for the annual Society for News Design conference. This year’s destination: Denver, Colorado.

I’m not going to lie; this event sounds more mundane than class. (I basically sat in lectures for 4-7 hours a day.)

But I loved every minute.

I got to learn about all the new ideas people are coming up with while designing for the iPad. (And now, I REALLY want an iPad!)

I also got to listen to and meet some of the top designers in the country, and hear about how they approach their work.

We also had portfolio critiques with these professionals, and let me tell you, it was very nerve-racking.  However, when it’s over and you remember to breathe again, you remember that everything they told you will just help you be a better designer. (And they were all very nice.)

So yes, I paid a ridiculous amount of money to listen to lectures and take notes all day; but for me, it was more than enjoyable. I feel more than ever like I’m in the right major.

This trip wasn’t all work though; we had plenty of time to play. And Denver is a wonderful city. The weather is gorgeous! (NEARLY NO HUMIDITY! Quite a difference from the Midwest.)

Our swanky, expensive hotel, was right off the 16th Street Mall, which had restaurants and stores galore for our enjoyment. We hit up the Hard Rock Café and Johnny Rockets for some food. And we did our fair share of shopping, of course.

Honestly, I was not ready to leave on Saturday.  The time just seemed to fly. But I am so grateful that I had the opportunity to go, and now I just have that much more insight to the world of design and can grow as a visual journalist myself.



The Impact of Social Media on Future Journalists

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| Sara Nahrwold |

As journalists, it’s our job to be watchdogs for the government and to tell the stories of ordinary people.  We constantly are watching others and their decisions and listening to what they have to say. We are so focused on watching others that we forget sometimes that others are watching us. And when I say “others” I don’t mean other journalists or editors or competition- I mean future employers.

At Ball State, I recently had a class discussion in News 210 about social media and its effect on future jobs. Most people don’t think about the pictures or comments they leave on Facebook. The attitude is “I had a good time, I want people to see it” or “my page is set to private so an employer can’t see what I do.” But more and more, employers are turning to Facebook to gauge a person and the things they do and say before they think about hiring them. Could my Facebook page keep me from getting a job? It’s a logical question to ask.

Although we journalists keep an eye on others in the community, we need to start keeping an eye on ourselves. In this class, I learned that the world is changing to the point where Facebook and other social media sites need to be viewed as part of a professional portfolio rather than personal entertainment, which means cleaning up social media sites so they are presentable to a future employer.

When we first discussed this in class, I was a little offended that I should have to make my profile more professional instead of treating it as a social part of my life. But the more we discussed it, the more I understood why it should be more professional. For me, I don’t have very much “cleaning” up to do for my profile. Other people- they have a long way to go before their profile will look decent for an employer.

Besides future employers down the road, Facebook pages could affect future internship opportunities. I hadn’t really thought about that until it was brought up in this class. That really affects my classmates and I and I really hope students start thinking more about what they post on Facebook.

This class was interesting since it tied in real world applications such as social media into the future lives of my fellow journalists and I. I think the days of Facebook for total fun are coming to a close.

Facebook and other social media outlets can still provide places of expression and individuality- but they need to be reigned in a bit more and people need to think twice or three times before they post that picture from last weekend’s party or make inappropriate comments to Facebook friends.

That day in my journalism class I learned quite a bit more about social media and its role than I had known before that. In fact, that same day, I went back to my dorm room and looked over my own Facebook and made some small changes. I don’t want my Facebook to be the reason I don’t land my dream internship or job.

Are you going to clean up your social media sites?



Find Your Voice

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| Heather Watts |

This semester I have embarked on my journey of becoming a writer. I’m taking Journalism 280: Introduction to Magazine Writing, possibly the hardest class I’ll ever take.

As an Ingelhart Scholar, I have visited news rooms and learned about journalists’ careers. I’ve been told over and over that to be a good journalist you need to read every day and pay attention to the news. I never listen. I read the school newspaper and maybe catch CNN occasionally.

I feel, as a college student, I don’t have time to read. I’m busy trying to prepare for my career by getting writing experience. This involves some reading, but I’ve learned in my magazine class in the past few weeks that if I’m not able to recognize the difference between good and bad writing, I will never be a good journalist.

I advise anyone who wants to go into journalism or writing to read as much as possible. Good writing transcends all branches of journalism. Don’t just read newspapers; read magazines and books as well. Analyze what tools writers use and what message they are trying to convey. Find your voice. That way, you will be better prepared for what college classes throw at you. You will have the chance to excel at student media and find internships, and eventually, a great job.



Things didn’t go as planned…(and I couldn’t be happier)

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| Holly Gillham |

Coming into Ball State last year, I guess you could say I thought I had it all planned out. As a journalism news major, I got started with the Daily News before the school year even started. I threw myself into it all, with the intention that I’d work my way up the pecking order at the DN and eventually snag that prized editor position. This would, I told myself, lead to an amazing internship, and the next thing I knew, I’d be the next big shot reporter at some newspaper.

But then something unexpected happened. I felt a pull in a different direction.

Yes, I came to the heart-wrenching conclusion that my dream was, actually, not my dream. For a few weeks, I felt alone and scared. What exactly was I going to do with the rest of my life? The planner in me was freaking out!

So then I looked through the remaining chapters in my J101 textbook and saw a section on public relations. I skimmed through it and finally realized that maybe…just maybe….this was what I was suppose to do.

After a few discussions with my family and the very helpful journalism professors we have here, I decided that I would change my major to PR. I joined PRSSA (short for the Public Relations Student of America) and quickly got involved.

I soon learned the different between public relations and journalism. They’re actually more the same than different. Writing is crucial for both of us, but PR professionals generally work for organizations (like government, businesses, nonprofits) in performing strategic acts. I’m particularly interested in the prospect of working on political campaigns.

So, you too may have a dream coming into college. And that’s great! But remember: things might change. It’s a scary thing. However, with a little research and a lot of faith, magic can happen.

And I can finally say that I’m one happy PR major!



Studying What I Love

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| Catherine Greis |

Hello BSU readers, and other community members! My name is Catherine and I’m a sophomore studying Magazine Journalism with a minor in fashion. I am also a Ingelhart Scholar at BSU, which means I meet with a special group of other talented journalism majors and plan events and get the opportunity to talk with other professionals in the business. So far my two years here at Ball State have opened my eyes to new opportunities and has let me really figure out what it is what I want to do with my life.

Being at BSU has allowed me to study two things I really love. Writing and Fashion. Sometimes when I tell people that I wish to combine those two things for a career in the future, they don’t exactly see what one has to do with the other. However, even though the newspaper industry’s future isn’t looking so good, the magazine business is continuing to blossom.

Now, my father is one of these believers that journalism is “dying” business. It was up to me to prove to him that while many newspapers ratings are down because of other media outlets, the idea of a fashion magazine will never go away. In my opinion, the only way the fashion world can provide the latest trends and pictures from fashion shows is in the form of a visual, “in your hands” product. In other words, a magazine. A magazine is so much more than just writing on a page. It’s feature writing with in-depth reporting and pictures in color. Everyone needs to know how to dress himself or herself and know what’s “trendy”, so that’s why, to me, the fashion journalism career is a perfect one!

People will always be looking for the next best thing or wonder what designers are putting forth on the runway. This just seems like such an exciting world to me because it’s always changing and new trends pop up everyday. And even now with new media outlets like online and video, we can enhance the fashion world, and give readers a sneak peek into backstage at runways and interviews with designers. They can go where the average American can’t. There are even so many iPod apps that let fashion fanatics like myself, read about the latest fashion news.

That’s why Ball State is the perfect place to incorporate both of these things. Since being here, I’ve had the opportunity to experience the journalism and fashion world. Last May, I went with the many fashion majors and minors on a trip to New York City and was given the opportunity to tour different designers’ studios like Tommy Hilfiger and Nanette Lepore, and see how their business is ran and what jobs there are. We even got exposure to a trending business that provides an online database for designers to track trends and read about what the world is wearing. Through BSU’s constant hunger for new technology and giving its students the latest education in media and for the world-renowned fashion department, I know it can prepare me for a competitive career in the fashion journalism business. I still don’t know exactly what I want to do yet or how I want to use my fashion journalism, but I know that I lucky to be in a place that lets me study two things I really love and to know I will have the latest knowledge in technology that will set me a part from other students.

Until Next time….





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My name is Andrea and this is my junior year at Ball State. I’m a Journalism Graphics major and I am also working on a Leadership minor. I’m from Kansas City and yes- I do know that neither Toto nor I are in Kansas anymore.

I’m so glad to be a part of the Ball State community. In the two years that I have been a student here, I have become involved in journalism here on campus and many other activities.

Outside of journalism, I stay very busy with the Excellence In Leadership program. I am very involved as an active member of my sorority, Alpha Omicron Pi. The Pan-Hellenic sororities on campus have just completed recruitment, so these past few weeks have been a crazy time! It seems like I have had no sleep and no regular eating schedule, but I have had a blast spending 24/7 with my sisters and welcome many new members to AOII.

This fall I am involved in an immersive learning project; I will receive credit for working on a project with sixteen other students from the College of Communications and Information Media. It’s called Indiana’s Hidden Treasures; we are researching, traveling and putting together a project focusing on the arts across Indiana. So far, there has been a lot of planning, and we are now beginning work on our stories.

This past week my team and I interviewed two of Indiana’s renowned artists; Peter Davis, a creative writing professor at Ball State University, and Hyun Sook Kim, a costume design professor at Ball State University. Davis is a poet, painter and musician – in addition to being a loving father and husband. Kim is a costume designer and has won several prestigious awards, both in the United States and in Korea.

For additional information on what our team is busy working on this semester, check out our Facebook Page (search: Hidden Treasures).

Throughout the last couple of years, I have also designed for the Daily News and the Ball Bearings magazine, both award-winning publications; I have enjoyed getting a feel for how a real newsroom works. This semester, I will design for Ball Bearings and I am considering getting involved with some web design there as well!

Keep checking back to my posts and feel free to ask me any questions about life as a journalism student!

Hope you all are having a wonderful fall!



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