Becoming involved with university publications can seem intimidating and complex to high school students, even with publishing experience. This is to help students with the drive and potential to become senior editor:
Do your own research and put yourself out there. Student-run publications don’t have a big presence, and since the executive changes every year, their advertising methods change constantly. Email the publication: “How can I get involved?”
Get involved in your first year, even in a minor way. Your dreams of becoming editor of The New Yorker may not match the job description for junior copy editor at a small university publication, but you have to start somewhere. It helps if you held a position on a high school publication, such as yearbook. Senior editorial positions usually require at least several months of copy editing or related experience.
Put in the time. Go to the group meetings, launches, and events. Continual meetings can become monotonous, but those who are around the most get the most opportunities and cultivate a reputation essential to a senior position with the publication.
Many university publications have a porous creative process, meaning that students can become involved in all aspects of the publications process – writing, editing, designing, promotion, etc. Commitment is one of the biggest problems university publications deal with. One-time contributors are easy to come by, but not many students want to dedicate themselves to an ongoing role in a publication. Therefore highly involved students will usually have a hand in each aspect of the publication. A design editor might contribute a few articles, or a writer might make illustrations, for instance.
Keep your goals in sight. Student publications are meant to be platforms for opinions and originality, but can sometimes stopper with unoriginality. Continue to offer up new ideas, challenge platitudes, and keep a record of your work.
Need some writing experience? Email [email protected] with your resume.