Meet Taylor Smith ’22, a senior majoring in Journalism News and Magazine Media, minoring in Creative Writing. In this blog, Taylor shares how her passion for journalism and writing has led to a host of great experiences, including becoming Editor-in-Chief of The Ball State Daily News. She talks about her decision to study journalism as well as what she hopes to accomplish in the future.
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Can you describe your journey prior to Ball State University?
I have always known I wanted to write, but, before coming to Ball State, I let my fear of not making it as a writer affect me. I applied to every college as a pre-veterinary major before coming to BSU’s Journalism Jumpstart program, and I immediately switched my major and started following the career path I had always hoped to follow.
What made you decide on your major at Ball State?
Journalism Jumpstart, and specifically meeting Kim Green and Lisa Renze-Rhodes in the Department of Journalism.
What has been your favorite class or career opportunity during your time at Ball State?
I have LOVED all of my creative writing classes! They allow me to turn the creative side of my brain on, leave behind the nonfiction of journalism and commit to whatever is inspiring me to write. I also would not be where I am today without Ball State’s Unified Media Lab and The Daily News. Student media is where I have learned the most about what it means to be a professional journalist!
How have your experiences at Ball State shaped your personal growth?
Prior to coming to BSU, I was shy and kept to myself. I didn’t share my writing with anyone outside of my family and a few people I trusted most. Now, I have my own online writing portfolio to share my work with everyone I can. BSU has helped me find my confidence as a writer, and I have grown so much because of that.
Could you give us the top three projects you have worked on?
1. Monday Morning New York Times Newsroom Meeting
2. Interviewing and meeting New York Times Bestselling Author and BSU alumna, Ashley Ford
3. Interning with St. Louis Magazine
What has been the proudest moment in your career so far?
I won second place for the College Media Association’s Best Profile Story for the 2020-21 Pinnacle Awards! It was for my profile on Rhonda Ward.
Have you won any awards for your work?
Yes! I am a three year Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker Award winner and finalist, as well as a three year College Media Association Pinnacle Award winner and finalist. I have also won scholarships for my work, including the 2021 Don Yaeger Daily News Editor Scholarship.
What are your plans after college?
After college, I hope to move to New York City and write for a magazine in Manhattan while doing my creative writing on the side! Wherever I end up, I just hope I am writing.
Can you share one thing that people don’t typically know about you?
This is a tough question! I guess most people probably wouldn’t know that I did competitive cheerleading and ballet for 14 years!
Who are your mentors?
Oh, boy. Here we go: Ashley C. Ford, Lisa Renze-Rhodes, Rachel Syme, Anna Wintour, my family, Alexa Chung, Elaine Welteroth, Orion Carloto, Caroline Vazzana and Harry Styles!
Are you involved in any student organizations at Ball State?
Yes! I am editor-in-chief of The Ball State Daily News, which I joined the first week of my freshman year. I also write for Ball Bearings Magazine and have written for Byte! I am an honors college student.
What do you think is most important about Ball State?
Ball State allows you to explore every possibility and opportunity until you find the path that makes your heart feel most at home, and that’s important for any college student to experience.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?
My online portfolio is www.taywrites.com 🙂