Although I was born in Knoxville, Tenn., I lived in Craig for 17 years, and I am now a 23-year-old student majoring in journalism at Mansfield University in Mansfield, Pa.
I have many memories from living in Craig, such as attending Faith Lutheran Church and having fun working for the Burger King when it still was in operation.
Part of what led me to be a journalist can be traced to my time in Craig, too, as I remember growing up in Craig and reading the Craig Daily Press - mostly for the funny pages - but as I grew older, what was happening in the world became more important to me. I've always enjoyed writing, and it's always come pretty easy to me compared to other things. I mostly did creative writing when I was younger, though.
I attended Moffat County High School, but I never got a high school diploma. When I moved out east on my own to try and make my own way in the world, I realized very quickly how important education really is. I received my GED and started planning for college after that.
The news is something that has interested me for many years. Journalists always got my respect for being the hard-working people who went above and beyond, investigating stories, and writing them for publication in various news media.
I've count several writers and journalists as inspirations who made me want to try my hand in the journalism field, from the fictional - Clark Kent - to real life - author Hunter S. Thompson and journalists Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, who were partly responsible for the resignation of Richard Nixon.
I always thought it would be exciting and fun to be published in print and seen on TV and know that the story I worked on was important enough for other people to take notice of it.
I believe that in a world where information travels instantly around the world, the career of journalism seems to have become more fast-paced, and in a world where anyone can report on what goes on in the world, it's even more important to have journalists who are there to report it accurately and separate fiction from fact.
I only have a limited experience in my journalism studies right now, but I hope to be able to broaden that through studies at school and real-world experience.
I think investigative journalism sounds like the most exciting aspect of this field. I like to think everyone is able to do their part to help make the world a better place, and investigating and bringing to light problems in our communities and in our country that need to be addressed and dealt with seems to be a great place to start. I remember Chris Hansen's series of stories about the lack of security at airports that resulted in the FAA revising their policies after their own investigation.
I know that everyone starts small, at the bottom of the ladder, and most of the people who do the groundbreaking stories have been involved in the field for years, but I'm looking forward to continuing my study of journalism over the next few years and seeing where life takes me after school.
Robert Thompson is a former Craig resident.