Name: Alexandra Gomes
College Newspaper: The Gatepost (Framingham, Massachusetts)
Where I am now: Reporter at The Sun Chronicle
My journalism career started at a small, weekly student-run newspaper called The Gatepost, which serves the Framingham State University community in Massachusetts. During my three years there, our staff fluctuated from 15 editors and staffers to 30. All reporters, photographers, designers and editors are unpaid volunteers, who committed hours upon hours of time to the paper just for the sake of journalism. While I had a journalism minor and took many journalism courses with brilliant professors, the kind of education and experience I gained at the paper is unmatched. Fellow student journalists taught me how to interview, transcribe, write, how to deal with police (on and off campus), how to shoot photos and videos, how to design a front page, and so much more. The kind of work we did there was relevant and important, and oftentimes led to positive changes in the University and administration. It was work that we could have definitely not accomplished had we not been independent. Without independent student newspapers, colleges and their overlords are accountable to no one. The Gatepost not only produces experienced and ethical journalists, but it continues to make Framingham State University a better school each and every day.