Higher Education Reporter

Beat reporters are responsible for ongoing coverage of a specific topic area. They travel to interview sources and observe news in progress to prepare stories on deadline for the newspaper. The job includes talking with sources, transcribing notes, developing and writing stories. It may also include using social media to promote stories or remain in contact with readers and sources.

Basic Skills and Competencies

  • Good at telling a story
  • Strong reporting and writing skills
  • Ability to meet a deadline
  • Balances multiple projects and job tasks

Jenna Ross is a regional reporter for the Star Tribune. At the time of the interview, Ross was the higher education reporter for the Star Tribune. After graduating from the SJMC with a journalism degree in 2006, she began her career at the Star Tribune as a reporter on the suburban beat. During her time at the SJMC, Jenna was a Star Tribune Scholar, which allowed her to intern and participate in the practicum course at the newspaper. While at SJMC she was also involved in the University of Minnesota Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.


Courses to Help Prepare You (Within SJMC)

  • JOUR 3102: Multimedia Production and Storytelling
  • JOUR 3103: Interactive and Data Journalism
  • JOUR 3121: Intermediate News Reporting
  • JOUR 4193: Brovald-Sim Community Journalism Practicum: Covering Communities
  • JOUR 4992 Practicum courses at the Star Tribune and Pioneer Press
  • JOUR 5131: In-Depth Reporting
  • JOUR 5155: Database Reporting

Courses to Help Prepare You (Outside SJMC)

  • COMM 1101: Introduction to Public Speaking
  • COMM 3422: Interviewing and Communication
  • Courses in a specific subject area such as business, history, politics, economics, the arts

Student Groups

  • Society of Professional Journalists

Participate In

  • Murphy News Service
  • Minnesota Daily
  • Practicum classes


  • Intern at local newspapers
  • Look for internships in magazines

Your Career

Career Resources

Professional Organizations

Potential Job Titles

  • Reporter
  • Editor
  • Beat Reporter
  • Online Reporter
  • City Desk Reporter
  • Courts Reporter

Where Alumni Work

  • New York Times
  • Dallas Morning News
  • Star Tribune
  • St. Paul Pioneer Press
  • Downtown Journal
  • Duluth News Tribune
  • St. Cloud Times
  • Salt Lake Tribune

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