Sharing Stories and Highlighting Experiences

In high school, Jasmine Jackson was encouraged to find hands-on learning experiences that lined up with her passions. Jackson had enjoyed reading and writing since she was young and decided she would give writing for her school’s newspaper a try. After her first assignment, she was hooked.

Jackson worked for her school’s newspaper, in Columbus, Nebraska, for two years, covering a variety of stories and individuals as a reporter.

“As I started looking at potential career options, I was repeatedly told to do what I love,” Jackson said. “With my interest in reading and writing, I thought I would give journalism a try and see how it felt. I joined the paper my junior year and absolutely loved it.”

Jackson proved she had a knack for writing throughout her time at the paper. Most recently, she took home several awards during the Nebraska School Activities Association (NSAA) State Journalism Championship, including first place in headline writing and second place in newspaper column writing.

“I love talking to people and hearing their stories,” Jackson said. “That’s what originally drew me in. It’s really rewarding to share stories and experiences from others.”

As Jackson began her college search, she knew journalism was going to be her major. Her research led her to the University of Missouri and the School of Journalism, where she began this fall.

“When I was looking up the best programs for journalism, Mizzou continuously came up,” Jackson said. “As I looked into everything MU would offer me from a journalistic perspective, I knew I had to be a Tiger.”

Jackson said the Missouri Method played a big role in bringing her to Mizzou, too. The J-School’s real-world approach to journalism education, the Missouri Method focuses on learning by doing. Students are prepared for careers in journalism, advertising and other media fields by combining classroom education and hands-on training in professional media outlets.

“The fact that I get to learn from some of the best journalistic minds in the country is amazing,” Jackson said. “I also love that I can participate in so many incredible hands-on learning experiences. I’m ready to jump in and gain more knowledge within the field.”

Jackson will attend MU as a Brazeal Scholar. Offered through the Honors College, Scholars receive at least $15,000 per year, renewable for a total of four years. They also receive an additional $6,000 to cover the costs associated with an MU study abroad program.

“It was really exciting to be named a Scholar,” Jackson said. “The waiting was difficult, but when I found out, I was so happy. Receiving the award really solidified my decision to come to Mizzou. The entire interview process showcased so many cool things about MU.”

Brazeal Scholars also receive a research placement during their freshman year. While Jackson hasn’t conducted research before, she said she is looking forward to diving into something new.

“I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunity to be involved in research,” Jackson said. “It will be exciting to collaborate with others and learn from my mentor. I’m ready to explore my passions through research, something that I didn’t think I would ever have the chance to do.”

Jackson said she is looking at a handful of clubs and organizations as she begins her collegiate journey, too, such as the Mizzou Women in Media and the National Association of Black Journalists.

“One thing that really stuck out to me during the Brazeal interview weekend is how many opportunities there are outside of the classroom at Mizzou,” Jackson said. “I also saw how the people here genuinely care about you as a person. They want to help you get connected and follow your passions.”