Professional Writing major Haley Seymour ‘23 talks about her internship and class experiences and role as Editor-in-Chief of The Crossover.
Q: What extracurricular activities are you involved in as Professional Writing major?
A: The Crossover is the intersection of news, arts, and culture at Champlain College. We’re a student-run news site that publishes news, features, culture pieces, reviews, and opinion articles. The opinion section is my personal favorite because I love when student voices get heard. I think it’s very important for people to share their opinions on different topics going on at the college and beyond.
I became the Editor-in-Chief of The Crossover my sophomore year. We only had two staff writers at the time, and then me, so I rebranded the site and encouraged more people to join. The rebranding effort was part of an internship that I did through the Emergent Media Center with Professional Writing professor Tanya Stone, called the Publishing Hub Fellowship. We looked at all of the student-run publications and designed new logos, new infographics, analyzed who was currently reading the publications and what audiences still needed to be reached, planned how to advertise the publications to students, brainstormed different marketing ideas, and more.
It’s a lot of work, but I like it because I get exposure to a bunch of different things. I learned how to edit. I also write, I do social media, I market. I publish all the stories. I do pretty much everything since we are still trying to grow our staff. We have an associate editor, content editor, and staff writers, so I do everything in between. One of the main goals of the Pub Hub Project was to expand it to all students and get more people involved so that one person wasn’t doing everything for each publication. I enjoy it because I’m learning so much about what I’ll be doing in the real world in my career after I graduate.
Q: Can you tell us more about your internship experience?
A: My internship with the Emergent Media Center definitely helped me figure out what I want to do for my future career. It exposed me to not only the writing that I’m used to, but also marketing, reaching out to people, hosting focus groups, doing research, and more. Getting comfortable reaching out to people is very important to my future career as a journalist, so this was valuable experience. Doing internships really helps, because you get real-life work experience in the field you’re going to be in once you graduate.
Q: What are some relevant skills you’ve learned while studying at Champlain?
A: I’ve learned that deadlines are really, really important. I have to meet all deadlines that I’m expected to meet for The Crossover or the publication doesn’t happen. I have to be very diligent and make sure that I’m organized—on top of my full course load!
I’m also a Student Writer for The View and Champlain’s Marketing Team. I’m doing a lot of writing, which is the best thing I could possibly be doing, but I’m also editing and looking at other people’s stories. I’m getting ideas for my own writing while reading their stories, because reading is the best way to learn how to write. That’s really helping for my future career.
Q: What is The Well?
A: The Well used to be a student-run wellness magazine, but it moved into the Magazine Publishing class through the Professional Writing program. Students in that class get together to write feature stories, short blurbs, listicles, gather photos, and even design the magazine. It was really cool to get exposure to all those different concepts. It was a really fun class and the end result was a completed magazine, which was super cool and great for our resumes.
Q: How has the Upside-Down Curriculum helped your education?
A: The Upside-Down Curriculum has helped me a lot. I have wanted to be a journalist for a long time, and being able to solidify that dream in my first semester was very helpful. I was able to take a journalism class, a creative writing class, and a literature-based class, so that I was exposed to different types of writing. Then, I was able to figure out which one was actually my favorite, which continued to be journalism. It’s important to have this type of learning early-on so you can understand your main likes and dislikes.