How to Become a News Correspondent

The news is a very important way to keep the public up to date with current events. News correspondents are news professionals that report the news that occurs in major U.S. and international cities.

What does a news correspondent do?

News correspondents are responsible for gathering news information and presenting it to the public from areas where important news events are likely to occur. They often present news from remote locations. They obtain the information using a variety of sources such as reports from wire services, news briefings, and personal interviews. They organize the information and present it in a variety of ways such as television broadcasts, radio broadcasts, and through magazines and newspapers. News correspondents spend a great deal of time investigating events before presenting it to the public to ensure stories are as accurate and complete as possible. Some present their own perspective on news events.

What kind of training does a news correspondent need?

News correspondents typically need at least a bachelor degree in mass communications, journalism, or other related field. Prospective news correspondents typically complete courses in journalism, mass communications, media, broadcasting, television news, and radio news. Many employers prefer applicants with previous experience. Many aspiring news correspondents complete internships to gain practical experience in the field. Many also have previous experience with school publications or broadcasting stations. Most employers provide some on the job training to enable new news correspondents to learn the necessary skills and experience. New correspondents typically start completing simple assignment and move on to more important events as they gain experience.

What are the prospects for a career as a news correspondent?

Employment of news correspondents is expected to decline moderately from all professions, decreasing 8% from 2008 to 2018 (1).

Job prospects are expected to be fair with strong competition for employment with large publications and broadcast companies. News correspondents with extensive experience and those with specialized skills will have the best job opportunities. Some job openings will result from the need to replace news correspondents that retire, transfer, or leave the profession for other reasons.

How much do news correspondents make?

As of January 2010, news correspondents with 1 to 4 years experience earn average annual salaries between $30,000 and $48,323. Those with 5 to 9 years experience earn average annual salaries between $41,116 and $78,611 (2).

A career as a news correspondent is an excellent choice for individuals with a strong interest in gathering and presenting news occurring in major cities around the world. News correspondents must have a solid understanding of how to gather and present a variety of information to many different audiences. Self-confidence, accuracy, persistence, physical stamina, and resourcefulness are essential characteristics. News correspondents must have excellent communication and a pleasant voice and appearance. They must be able to work under stress and pressure to meet strict deadlines. They must also be able to handle unfamiliar places and people.

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