Friday, November 9, 2012

Final Blog Post

Since this is the final blog post for this class, I've decided to talk about my future. I only have one semester left here are University of the Sciences, after which I will have earned my BS in Bioinformatics with a minor in psychology. My career goal is to work in the public health department as a genetic counselor.

Pursuing a career in genetic counseling is the ultimate goal after graduation. I am currently applying to many graduate programs across the country in hopes of getting accepted to at least one of them. My fall back plan, if I end up not getting accepted to any genetic counseling graduate programs, is to continue my education in human genetics and epidemiology.

My biggest fear when thinking about the future is that I will go through all this schooling and get these degrees and not be able to get a job. While I have had significant financial aid through the government and the University, I still have a large amount of debt that I will need to start paying off after I complete all of my degree programs. I am extremely afraid that I am not going to find a job in my field, which will leave me unable to pay off my debt.

While this is a reasonable fear (to me at least) I believe that I have good employable qualities that will help me get my dream job. The field of genetic counseling is also growing at decent rate, which means as times goes on and new technology is produced this career will be more in-demand. The only thing that holds the field of genetics back is the lack of cost-effective technology. I'm sure this will come with time though!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

A Lesson In Ethics

The assignment for this post is to answer three questions, given by Professor Flanagan, about ethics. My answers to the questions will be in blue, the questions in black.

1. Is it ethical for a reporter to write a news piece on the same topic on which he or she has written an opinion piece in the same paper?
It is not ethical for a reporter to write a news story in this case. The job of a journalist is to report the news without bias. Writing an opinion column will contain bias and whether or not the reporter intended to include his or her opinion, there is a higher chance that it will happen due to the opinion column.

2. Freelance journalists and photographers accept cash to write about, or take photos of, events with the promise of attempting to get their work on the AP or other news outlets, from which they also will be paid. Is that ethical?
I don't think that it's ethical to accept cash from the person the story is being written about or what is being photographed unless it is stated and explained somewhere, if the reporter/photographer is also being paid by the company which will be publishing it. If he or she is doing it specifically for the company/person and will not be getting paid from another outside source, then it is ethical (again, as long is payment was noted somewhere).

3. Can a journalist reveal a source of information after guaranteeing confidentiality if the source proves to be unreliable?
No, I don't think they should out a source after guaranteeing confidentiality. For all they know, the source believed what they were saying to be true. The reporter should use that as a lesson to do further investigating onto the topic and should take full responsibility of the incorrect information.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Query Letter Draft

Jennifer Macfarlan
My Address Here
Philadelphia, PA12345

Name of Editor
Town, State Zip

November 1, 2012

Dear Mr. Paper Editor,

Your readers have spend a lot of time in the dark the past few days. Without the luxury of electronics, many have had to get creative with ways to entertain themselves and communicate with others.

According to the power companies, around 8 million people were left without electricity after Hurricane Sandy. Many were told once they lost power it could be out for as long as two weeks. With a society that has a large dependency on electronic devices, families had to come up with new ways of spending their time.

In "Article Title Goes Here" I will interview some families to investigate what new and creative ways they have of keeping everybody entertained during their days in the dark. I will also include topics such as:
  • How they communicated with distant friends and family without the use of cell phones.
  • How they dealt without daily necessities such as heat, water, and cooking devices.
  • What they learned about preparing for future power outages and any tips they have for others.
Your readers could benefit from hearing what other people did during the time the electricity was out to help them prepare; "Article Title Here" won't disappoint them. May I write this article for you?

Thanks for taking the time to consider my idea. I look forward to hearing from you.


Jennifer Macfarlan