Kaitlin Coward has many reasons why she became a great editor, and many of them come from Ohio University.
Professors who taught her at her work experience at The Post, Coward, BSJ ’18, said she was well prepared for her role as a real-time editor at McClatchy, editing breaking news, trending stories and explainers who help people make sense of the news of the day.
She is not alone. Academic journal recently ranked Ohio University as the fourth best university in the nation and the best in Ohio, for preparing students to become publishers.
“I had great teachers who took the time to teach me voice, structure and style through different types of stories, from basic crime summaries to data stories that took months to complete. to research, report and write,” Coward said. “They always took the time to help me and answer any questions I had and instilled in me the importance of both the big picture and the details in crafting the best stories. I would also like to thank Bill Reader and his preparation for the Dow Jones News Fund publishing program I wouldn’t be where I am without this internship, and I wouldn’t have gotten it without his help.
The EW Scripps School of Journalism offers courses that cover the full spectrum of journalism, including writing and editing.
“Our comprehensive program also requires students to gain real-world experience in addition to on-campus experiential learning by completing work placements. When our graduates leave Ohio University, they are well prepared for successful careers as writers and editors,” said the director of the Scripps School of Journalism. Eddith Dashiel.
Coward also thanked The Post and its editors for passing on their knowledge of the courses and internships.
“It was such a vital part of my upbringing, and I was extremely lucky to be so involved there and to learn from so many talented members of staff,” she said.
Another Bobcat editor, Dillon Stewart (BSJ ’15), was recently named editor of Cleveland Magazine. He cited several faculty influences, including Reader and Nerissa Young, as well as his time working at Backdrop Magazine and Southeast Ohio Magazine as foundations for his success.
He interned at Cleveland Magazine as a student and continued to freelance for them throughout his senior year and beyond, even while working for a trade magazine, North Coast Media. He finally started working for Cleveland Magazine in 2017 as associate editor and spent a year as editor and managing editor before taking on the role of managing editor in July 2022.
He worked as a web editor at Backdrop Magazine.
“I was running a lot of stuff on the web and we were working on doing more weekly content,” Stewart said. “(Editing) is a job you can learn in class all day, but until you start doing it, you can really only get some experience.”
He also cited Young’s AP Grammar and Style course and Reader’s Editing course as excellent foundations. In Reader’s class, he was tasked with finding errors in a large newspaper.
“It just amazed me that professional journalists also make mistakes,” he said.
Both Stewart and Coward have credited their time at Ohio University and their journalism degrees, and in particular their work for student publications, as keys to their success. Being a journalism student at Scripps, Stewart said, led him to an internship at Cleveland Magazine in the first place.
“Without that track at OU, I don’t know if I would be where I am today,” he said.