Sunday, August 9, 2009

Eating, drinking and (not) sleeping journalism

Founding director Rich Tucker '01 brings in food for the SJP students in the Friend Center. (Photo Credit: Brian Rokus '99). 

By Reem Abdou (Fort Lee, NJ)

It’s day nine of the program but it feels like I’ve only been in Princeton for nine minutes. Time becomes irrelevant when you eat, drink, and sleep—or don’t—journalism. My very first day was chock full of moments brimming with anxiety, excitement and homesickness. Now, nearing the end of my time here, I still feel ready to burst in anxiety, excitement and homesickness. It sort of feels as if the time in between the very first and last days were just endless hours of workshops, speakers and writing.

But the funny thing is, in my mind, I remember so clearly and vivdly the memories that gilded every long day here. I remember knocking on each of my neighbor’s doors in Scully Hall and welcoming them that first day, even though Princeton University was just beginning to welcome me. I remember having our first “writing time,” and seeing instead almost everyone communicating with the person sitting right in front of them through Facebook and provided landlines. I remember our newspaper meetings and the conversations we had with each other that we couldn’t really have with anyone back home. Nine days ago, 23 of us walked through the gates of this beautiful campus aspiring journalists, but I can tell that tomorrow we’ll walk out, more than anything else, inspired individuals.

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