Newhouse Insider: Looking Back On My Decision To Come To Newhouse

Adriana Rozas Rivera

I’m going to be brutally honest and tell you all that Newhouse was not my first choice. I was very much trying to avoid moving anywhere colder and snowier than Boston, MA. I applied to Newhouse just to have another option, but never thought I’d come here until I visited. I flew to Syracuse for the weekend the week before COVID-19 lockdown. I expected to be in and out without changing my mind about the school. That weekend did the opposite and after one year at Newhouse, I’m now more sure than ever that it was the right choice for me.

Newhouse’s many services and prestige intrigued me but that didn’t feel like enough to convince me to move so far away from home. It all came down to the professors. I remember chatting with many of them—who I’ve now come to know well through my classes—and thinking: Wow, they really seem to care about the students. I immediately felt welcome by all staff and faculty I met. Everyone wanted to know how my time working on a campaign was going, or what it was like living in Puerto Rico, or what beat I’d like to specialize in. Throughout your application process, you’ll get a “vibe” from the different schools. I won’t name names but some schools make you feel like another statistic, customer, or tourist. Newhouse felt different.

When the time came to make the decision, I was very focused on the financial feasibility of each school. Newhouse happened to be the cheapest alternative for me and while deciding solely on affordability made me jumpy, I was reassured by that gut feeling that the professors would make the move to Upstate New York worth it.

It’s been a year since that decision, and I can confidently say I have no regrets about coming to Newhouse. It’s been the most transformative year of my career and I owe it all to my professors. I walked into this program with zero journalistic experience and am walking out as a multimedia and magazine journalist with a bunch of clips. That gut feeling I had about the professors was right: they really do care. They won’t just teach you for an hour and twenty minutes twice a week. They’ll brainstorm story ideas with you; they’ll help you edit pitches; they’ll recommend you for opportunities; they’ll connect you with alumni; they’ll read your story, edit it, read it again, and discuss it with you; they’ll suggest publications to target for your work; they’ll bring you bagels on the last day of class; they’ll let you vent about school and offer advice.

So, take it from someone who wasn’t sure if they should come to Newhouse: it’s worth it. I have no doubt my resume is better because I came here. My network has grown (the Newhouse mafia is real) and my LinkedIn and portfolio have developed more than they ever had. But most importantly, professionally I am a changed woman. I now see myself doing things I had never considered. Thanks to Newhouse I’m interested in audio and video (surprising considering I had never once imagined myself using Premiere). I walked in expecting to become a political newspaper reporter and am walking out very much decided that newspapers are not for me. And that’s okay. Because the point of coming to Newhouse is figuring out that you don’t have one path in journalism— there’s millions of options for you, and you can explore all of those paths at SU.