Ben Meyerson shares his dedication for journalism
By Cara Snower
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Ben Meyerson is a news editor at the Sun-Times Media Group, which publishes a majority of papers in the northern and western suburbs of Chicago. He is the editor of six different papers: the Elmwood Park Leaves, the Morton Grove Champion, the Niles Harold-Spectator, the Oak Park Leaves, the Park Ridge Herald-Advocate and the River Forest Leaves.
He studied journalism at the University of Maryland. Being close to Washington D.C., he sought many opportunities including reporting on Capitol Hill. Meyerson did some freelancing after college, writing for papers like the Chicago Tribune. He was hired by the Wednesday Journal in Oak Park, Ill. and later was promoted to editing newspapers in the Chicagoland area.
Meyerson begins his morning by reading through his emails and getting an idea of what his day will be like. At 10:30 a.m. he checks into his office, corresponds with coworkers and passes along news stories. While it’s still early, he edits stories and publishes them online. From noon to about 5 p.m., he reads over stories and communicates with reporters. Two times a week, he edits a print product.
Every career has its pros and cons. Meyerson enjoys that everyday as an editor is fun, exciting and different. He also enjoys working with reporters and getting the opportunity to witness stories. What he does not enjoy is reporting sad stories like deaths and accidents.
Editors across the nation have been affected by changes in the media industry. Declining revenues have led to staff layoffs, which is sad to see.
Meyerson talked about common mistakes he sees in editing. He often sees grammatical errors or errors such as extra spaces between words.
Meyerson’s advice for journalism students is to write as much as they can. He suggested getting internships and joining networking groups.
Education, he said, will get you started, but it won’t land you a job.
“You must show people what you have done to prove you can do the job.”