Sunday, 10 July 2011

First day of class

On Monday, June 27th, I arrived to my school, the Al-Imtiaz Academy, to learn about something I had never heard of. As I awaited for the teacher to arrive, I anxiously talked with my friends about how lucky we are to be selected for such a great enrichment opportunity. And today was the first day of class.

Our teacher’s name is Ms. Mariya Ilyas. She has come from the USA and is a student of third year at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine. Last year she was the Arts and Entertainment Editor for her college weekly newspaper, The Bowdoin Orient. Ms. Mariya has organized a journalism program for us, and she will help us start our very first school newspaper. Her project is made possible by Kathryn Wasserman Davis, a philanthropist who, on her 100th birthday, decided that it would be the young, motivated minds that could bring peace to the world. Ms. Mariya is one of the lucky 100 recipients of Ms. Davis’ Projects for Peace awards.

So far, we have learned what journalism is, why is it important, and  how we as students can pratice it. Journalism is defined as telling the truth about the world. It means to report the truth, to investigate, to inform the people about incidents and events that happen around us. Ms. Mariya emphasized two main points of journalism: to provide people access to information and disseminate the truth. We also learned that journalism can be broken down into braches – news and opinions. In short, news articles report and opinion articles give people a voice. News includes breaking news, feature stories, regular news, and investigative reports while opinions include unsigned editorials, signed columns and reviews.

By our third class, we had a better sense of what journalism was. We also know what qualitites a good journalist should possess; he should honest, curious, informed, and objective. A good journalist should never compromise objectively in reporting of the truth.

My fellow classmates and I are very thankful to Ms. Mariya for providing us with such an opportunity to gain important skills and demonstrate our talent. Personally, I am really encouraged and look forward to improving my confidence – both in my writing and speaking.

By Natasha Abbasi

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