Inside the Newsroom @ A2 Journal

Welcome to Inside the Newsroom @ A2 Journal, a blog written by the newspaper's staff at A2 Journal, a new, weekly, community newspaper covering Ann Arbor. This blog is a place for members of the newspaper's staff to write their thoughts, observations, opinions and other informative pieces they put together while covering the rich history, interesting people, institutions and traditions that make Ann Arbor such a unique community.

Monday, May 24, 2010

May 24 - Lisa's Musings (on Kiwanis scholarships) and Every Day Life

There was a whole lotta money being handled at the Kiwanis Club of Ann Arbor meeting today.

And this time, it wasn’t in fines of quarters or dollars.

Nope. It was paper money – of the check kind – which totaled $29,000.

Today was the annual Kiwanis scholarship awards program during which 29 seniors in the Ann Arbor Public Schools were awarded a thousand dollars each for their college educations.

No one in the club knows, exactly, how long the Kiwanians have been handing out scholarships, but it’s been a long, long time.

And for these future leaders, it was really, really cool to hear what this money meant to the next stage of their lives.

Let’s face it – college tuition is super expensive and with more and more parents losing jobs, homes, second incomes, having their salaries cut -- every penny can make the difference between, well, attending college and not being able to afford higher education for their children.

One student told me the money meant everything to her. It marked a clean slate and a new chapter of her life. “This isn’t high school, anymore,” she said. It’s the next stage in the rest of her young live.

Seeing the baby faces of these soon-to-graduate seniors, and hearing the excitement in their voices as they talked about what they’d major in while in college.

Several soon-to-be graduates said they wanted to become journalists, which made me smile – and reminded me of how becoming a journalist was the only thing I ever wanted to do when I was in high school.

In fact, I’d already worked on the high school paper and at the local weekly before I got my high school diploma. In fact, I did an internship in sports at a daily newspaper my last trimester in high school because I’d already gotten all the credits I needed to graduate.

I was willing to give up all the fun senior stuff – just to get a jump on my future.

It’s something I’ve never regretted and a career that I still love – even if the requirements of being a journalist in today’s new “news ecology” changes as quickly as the weather in Michigan.

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