At age 4, I wanted to be an astronaut. I believed traveling to space would be the most fulfilling thing I could ever do. I knew exactly what I wanted to do when I grew up. It was only later that I discovered journalism.
I started to read the newspaper when I was about 8 years old. I downloaded the St. Louis Post Dispatch on my iPod and read the sports section every day. I was fascinated by the insider information on the Cardinals and the never-ending statistics on the Blues. But I still had not realized that journalism was my calling.
When freshman year of high school came around, I still struggled to see what was right in front of me. I had an inkling of an idea that I wanted to cover sports as a career but, intuitively, I knew something was missing. I wanted to make a difference in the world and, for me, reporting on baseball, football or hockey just never seemed right.
I finally had an epiphany when I signed up for two journalism courses my sophomore year of high school.
Once I was enrolled in class, my classmates and I were all given free subscriptions to The New York Times in order to read and study professional writing. This was an amazing and life-changing experience for me. I read the news every day, immediately scrolled through the political section once I woke up, and went line-by-line through every exposé I could find. There were these curious people in the world trying to make it a better place through writing. It hit me then. That would be me. I wanted to be an investigative reporter.
In pursuit of my goals, I’ve tried to learn everything I could about reporting. I have read “All the President’s Men” and watched the movie twice. I dive into every Bob Woodward book and anything else I can find on reporting. I’ve watched “Spotlight” countless times. Everything just seemed to click once I knew what I was going to do.
Now I’m the news editor of my school’s publication. I write for Ohr Chadash, a wonderful opportunity for aspiring writers like me. I also intern at a radio station. I do all this, and I love it. I’ve found my path in high school, and it is the greatest feeling in the world.
I know some people never find their passion, and end up searching their entire life for something they truly care about. I’m lucky, and I don’t ever want to give that up. For me, becoming a journalist is better than space travel could ever be.