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As Told by Jackie: The life of a Comm School student

There are many questions I dread in life. Some make the top 10 list:

1) “Did you finish that entire bag of chips already?”

2) “Why have you been staring at me for the past 25 minutes?”

3) “Is that your natural hair color?”

The reigning champion for the No. 1 spot, however, goes to “What is your major?”

You’re probably thinking that I’m undecided and have yet to commit to any sense of direction with my professional goals. I sit outside on the Green all day braiding my hair and aligning myself with my spirit animal.

No, it’s worse. I’m in the Comm School. Cue the knowing sneers: “Ooooh the Com School.”

You probably would have been more impressed if I told you I was majoring in scrapbooking or rainbows.

We get it. We’re the Stanford dorms of schools. We’re the Mr. Frogs if it were a degree. We’re a running joke.

So what that all of my books combined don’t weigh as much as your chemistry textbook and I’ll never have to memorize why electrons behave as particles when observed directly? What we lack in flashcards, we make up for in honing skills that can’t be learned from a textbook.

In high school, I edited many college application essays for students who are now studying those “real” majors at top schools and I found their essays to be formulaic – full of cliches and elementary narratives about topics such as the “definition of a true hero” with SAT vocab words tossed in haphazardly. And while throwing yourself at these “formulas” and “memorization” and rubbish might be coveted in astrophysics class, it doesn’t fly everywhere.

The degrees in the Comm School rely on a lot of hands-on experience, which most of the time can’t be done from the fifth floor of the stacks.

For me, this degree is a means to a $40,000 salary and a nice home freight hopping with all the other hobos who just graduated with a journalism degree if I am lucky. Trust me, this major is not the easy way out to anything.

Also, I doubt there are many Comm School students who are majoring in something there because their parents think it’s a good idea. We’ve endured more unsolicited advice about the fiscal crises and taking the LSATs than you and your “useful” majors could imagine.

So let’s agree to lay off the Comm School kids for a little? I heard the philosophy majors could use a good kicking around in the meantime.

Jackie Salo is majoring in journalism and political science since she couldn’t find a job as a froyo taste tester. She has won numerous awards including the prestigious Chai Center Hebrew School Perfect Attendance Award 2004.

As Told by Jackie is a blog that chronicles all of Jackie’s latest grievances that result from not being able to sleep 28 hours a day.

January 21, 2013

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Jackie Salo


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