The Next Chapter After College: Raeanna Marnati

In col­lege we have teach­ers, course require­ments, and guid­ance coun­selors. The sec­ond we grad­u­ate into adult­hood, we are imme­di­ately expected to under­stand what to do and how to get where were going next. Once one can land a decent job, we’re expected to know how to do what our boss asks us to do. When that first pay­check comes, were sup­posed to know about direct deposits, taxes, health­care, and sav­ing for retire­ment. We go from being sur­rounded by friends in col­lege to being scat­tered once grad­u­ated. With grad­u­a­tion approach­ing fast, some of us here at UWS must go on to the next chap­ter of our lives. For­mer UWS stu­dent Raeanna Mar­nati is a great exam­ple of going on to the next chap­ter in life. Her story shows us how student’s at UWS can use their expe­ri­ences here to pre­pare them­selves for a strong and suc­cess­ful future.

Raeanna has always lived in Supe­rior and has no desire of leav­ing. She attended Lake Supe­rior Col­lege for 3 years before decid­ing to come to UWS. She had a very busy sched­ule; going to school full time and work­ing 2 jobs in both retail and fast food. On top of that Raeanna was a reporter and edi­tor this our very own UWS Stinger. In addi­tion to her work and class loads being excep­tion­ally high she also began as an intern at the Northland’s News­cen­ter dur­ing the sum­mer of 2012 and was soon hired as a morn­ing reporter in August of that same year. She quickly moved her way up the lad­der at NNC to being a pro­ducer of KDLH 5:30 & 6:30 shows in March of 2013. Cur­rently, Raeanna is work­ing as a full-time mul­ti­me­dia jour­nal­ist report­ing on many sto­ries from around the area. Raeanna grad­u­ated UWS in May 2013 with hon­ors with a major in Com­mu­ni­ca­tions with an empha­sis in jour­nal­ism, and a minor in Soci­ol­ogy. She is now a news­cast and web pro­ducer for KBJR 6 and KDLH 3.

Raeanna Mar­nati — The Stinger
Raeanna feels that UWS and the Stinger helped pre­pare her not only to be a reporter but an out­stand­ing reporter. As edi­tor of the Stinger she gained valu­able expe­ri­ence in how to rec­og­nize an impor­tant story when there is one, and the wor­thi­ness of it. Raeanna learned to get both sides of a story. Journalist’s can­not have a one sided sto­ries so as to present all the facts fairly and not pro­mote a bias in their reports. Raeanna knows the impor­tance of research­ing a story and mak­ing sure each part is fac­tu­ally cor­rect before going into it because it’s very impor­tant to know what you are talk­ing about before you walk into an inter­view.  With the help of the Stinger, and specif­i­cally Susan Stanich, her writ­ing skills greatly improved.  She also learned a very impor­tant les­son about the impor­tance of being an hon­est reporter and to keep her per­sonal feel­ings out of stories.

As an edi­tor for the Stinger Raeanna read, re-read and re-re-read her reporter’s sto­ries. Being an edi­tor is an impor­tant job. She wasn’t there to change sto­ries– she was there to help the reporters grow and learn. She helped them real­ize how they could make their own sto­ries and writ­ing bet­ter. Most impor­tantly, she learned about dead­lines. Dead­lines are a big deal in the news world. At the Stinger, stu­dents usu­ally have a week or two to get a story done. How­ever, in news rooms, reporters only have a few hours to com­plete sto­ries.  Dead­lines are no joke. Raeanna learned what it’s like to get assign­ments done promptly, but also be as accu­rately as possible.

When going from col­lege to her career she had to tran­si­tion from writ­ing for print to writ­ing for broad­cast. She felt that UWS pre­pared her for writ­ing print only. She came to KBJR her sto­ries were too long and very detailed. Her writ­ing became so much bet­ter and tighter when she left col­lege. One of the most impor­tant things she learned is to remain hum­ble. She is very grate­ful for the job she has that she absolutely loves. She gets to do and see incred­i­ble things. She loves her job because it allows her to give a voice to the pub­lic and to become a voice for the public.

Raeanna shared a story about a fire in Vir­ginia Min­nesota. A 10 year old girl named Lau­ren Devich observed flames com­ing out of a win­dow of a house down here street. She quickly told her grand­mother what she saw and they called 911. The fire had already engulfed the home on the 700 block of 5th Avenue South in Vir­ginia, trap­ping 3 peo­ple inside. Police offi­cers found a dis­ori­ented woman inside the house, but Offi­cer Steve Estey felt that some­thing else was wrong. He ran upstairs to make sure nobody was up there, and heard a young child scream­ing at the top of the stairs. Another offi­cer had also found a baby on the couch. Thanks to the quick think­ing of police, all three res­i­dents were res­cued. If it wasn’t for Lau­ren Devich say­ing some­thing about the fire, it could have been deadly for the fam­ily in the house. Raeanna was so impressed in this lit­tle girl’s brav­ery and loved cap­tur­ing her story. She told Lau­ren how brave she thought she was and that she should be proud. Sto­ries like that make Raeanna really appre­ci­ate her work and touch her heart.

Raeanna is very happy where she is at because she has such a strong pas­sion for sto­ry­telling. She gets to do what she loves each day at work. “You have to love what you are doing. If you are doing it for the money, then you won’t be happy at all” she said. She also talked about how stu­dents need to get the full expe­ri­ence while they’re at col­lege and give it their all. Throw­ing all their pas­sion into a field you enjoy will get them far in their desired career. Her advice is to get every­thing you can out of col­lege and make the most out of it. Build­ing con­nec­tions and gain­ing expe­ri­ence in school will get you to where you want to be in life. Go into a field where you enjoy what you’re learn­ing each day and have a great sense of urgency just like Raeanna. She loves going into work each day to cap­ture the pas­sion from other people’s sto­ries and couldn’t imag­ine doing any­thing else. Raeanna is a great exam­ple of tak­ing the next chap­ter in your life after the tas­sel on the grad­u­a­tion cap falls to the other side

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