Today I learned one important thing through the SUSI program: every opportunity that comes along brings its own consequences and struggles. After two weeks of attending classes and activities with experts in their fields, I believe they are also still in the process of their own battles.
As Dr. Marianne Barrett said, ASU’s Cronkite School of Journalism & Mass Communication has a professional program and teaching hospital model, starting with baby steps. For example, when babies learn to walk, they have to try really hard to stand up, then fall and get up over and over again, until they are steady as they grow up.
Ms. Melanie Alvarez talked about how teachers are trying to deal with the pandemic. The pandemic is changing the way in-person learning takes place online. Senior educators who have been teaching for years are again stuttering and struggling to get through the complexities of online learning.
When we met with the editorial team of Arizona News12, we learned how the media are struggling to survive the rapid development of digital media. Changes in the media environment make them have to change their strategy to just stay afloat in an increasingly competitive media business.
Rebekah Sanders and Renata Clo, two journalists and activists with the journalists union in Arizona, reinforced the view that fighting for justice for their profession is full of twists and turns. I remember in particular one statement by Rebecca: “How can a journalist fight for the truth for the good of the community if they can’t fight for themselves in their own work environment?” They taught us that when we strive for good for ourselves, at the same time we are striving for the same good for others. Their enthusiasm successfully closed the day full of impressions.
And today, we got that fighting spirit again when the judges told about how they tried to handle all the risks that accompany their decisions. They said that every decision may please one party but not the other. In fact, on many occasions, it is not pleasant for all parties. They struggle for justice, which in many situations is not necessarily fair to others. An ongoing struggle that is not easy.
And this is the struggle we are going through as participants in the SUSI Scholars program as well. We traveled far more than 24 hours, endured homesickness, attended sessions during jet lag, and after two weeks, some of us have had to be isolated due to illness. But this is our struggle, as scholars, to gain more comprehensive knowledge and experience. We believe this is very valuable.
All of this is worth the struggle.