So You Need A Column Topic? 2.0

columnist fb cover

With applications for The Hoya’s fall 2016 columnists just released, 4E is here to help you get a little inspiration by giving you some examples of excellent column topics from the past.

First, here are some tips from last semester’s guide!

  • Write about a topic you’re familiar with. The best columns are those that focus on something about which the writer has genuine curiosity. Just look at Hoya Historian!
  • Make sure your topic is broad enough to span the entire semester, but not so broad that it can become scattered.
  • Be CREATIVE! There are some columns that cover topics such as identity or politics that are always good subjects to write about, but sometimes the great column ideas develop from seemingly simple ideas, like this one in the Guide about sandwiches. Try to think of a unique idea or have a different take on a topic we’ve already published.
  • If you have an idea you’re passionate about, run with it and see where it goes. The sky’s the limit!

The Guide

The Guide, which publishes once weekly, is looking for columnists to write every issue or every other issue. The wide scope of the Guide, which focuses on art, culture, lifestyle and entertainment, allows for a lot of creative freedom when coming up with column ideas. Just look at the variety among these sample columns about Kanye West, a columnist’s summer job and dating in college.

“What Yeezy Taught Me About Failure” – Daniel Smith

“The Woes of Summer Serving” – Nicole Jarvis

“Opting into the Dating Game” – The Cereal Dater

Opinion

An integral part of every issue, our opinion pages feature columns of an argument-based nature. Past themes have included identity, advice from seniors, neuroscience, foreign policy in the Middle East and politics. There is a multitude of ways through which the column can analyze an issue, including from a social, political, historical, statistical, educational or cultural point of view. Here are a few successful columns from last semester.

“It’s Good To Be Busy” – Rahul Desai

“The Buzz About ‘Lemonade’ “ – Femi Sobowale

“The Convoluted Kurdish Question” – Matthew Gregory

Sports

Sports columnists have the opportunity to delve into deeper analyses of team strategy, unpack the rivalries and controversies within the worlds of both professional and collegiate athletics, make predictions on future trades and match ups and comment on the relationship between sports and popular culture. Check out these excellent examples.

“Contracts Create Disputes” – Michael Ippolito

“Saunders Impacts Players” – Paolo Santamaria

“Sports Figures Overrepresented On Campuses” – Jimmy McLaughlin

We hope these examples help! The Hoya is always looking for innovative and talented writers like you, so please apply here by 11:59 p.m., August 27th!

Images: giphy.com

Apply To Be A Columnist For The Hoya: Summer 2016

Apps Summer Columnist

Feeling a little bored already now that you have been away from the Hilltop for only two weeks? Do you miss all things Georgetown? Need something to fill up that old resume? Luckily, 4E has the solution for you! The Hoya will be taking applications for summer columnists and we want YOU to help us out! Why wouldn’t you want to take this opportunity to join such a prestigious publication?

We’re really classy.

The best part is that there are so many different sections to share your story on The Hoya. You can write for the the Opinion section, the Sports section, or the Guide, our arts and lifestyle section! Need some examples to get you feeling inspired? Luckily, 4E has those for you too!

We’re also just really excited.

The Guide: 

“There’s More Than the Glass Ceiling” By Kim Bussing

“Indoctrinated in Individualism” By Katherine Cienkus

Opinion: 

“Jinwoo: Party of Four” By Jinwoo Chong

Sports: 

“Red Sox-Yankees Rivalry Has Faded From the Spotlight” By Carolyn Maguire

“Pedro Martinez Was One of the Greatest Ever” By Jake Foote

Feeling motivated? Inspired? We thought so.  Please apply to be a summer columnist now for The Hoya and share your story. Articles will run from June through August.

P.S. 4E suggests you get to it as soon as possible! Apps are due by May 27th at midnight.

So You Need A Column Topic?

Are you not quite sure what you want to write your column about yet? Well, you’re in luck! Here are some great column topics to draw inspiration from! (Spring 2016 columnist applications for The Hoya are now available here, and due by 11:59 p.m. on Jan. 12.)

Some General Tips:

  • Write about a topic you’re familiar with. The best columns are those that focus on something about which the writer has genuine curiosity. Just look at Hoya Historian!
  • Make sure your topic is broad enough to span the entire semester, but not so broad that it can become scattered.
  • Be CREATIVE! There are some columns that cover topics such as identity or politics that are always good subjects to write about, but sometimes the great column ideas develop from seemingly simplistic ideas, like this one in the Guide about sandwiches. Try to think of a unique idea or have a different take on a topic we’ve already published.
  • If you have an idea you’re passionate about, run with it and see where it goes. The sky’s the limit!

For Opinion:

Past themes include identity, advice from seniors, history, medicine and technology, comedy and politics. Other column ideas for this semester could include the upcoming presidential election or looking at President Obama’s last year in office. There are also a ton of ways to analyze topics; the column could review issues from a social, political, historical, statistical, educational or cultural point of view.

For Sports:

Past themes include fantasy football, professional soccer, D.C. area professional sports and men’s college basketball. Sports columnists have the opportunity to delve into deeper analyses of team strategy, unpack the rivalries and controversies within the worlds of both professional and collegiate athletics, make predictions on future trades and match ups and comment on the relationship between sports and popular/social culture.

For Guide:

Past themes include music, art, love and dating, studying abroad and the intersection of food and politics. The wide scope of the Guide, which focuses on lifestyle, art, entertainment, music and food, allows for a lot of creative freedom when coming up with column ideas. Other column ideas that will be considered include a creative writing column that features a continuous short story or other creative writing forms. With the online platform, columns that feature weekly music, photography or multimedia will be considered as well.

*Columns in the Guide should aim to tell stories over philosophizing about or analyzing a topic. Stories can be personal, cultural or historical.

For Business and Tech:

Past themes include global economic issues and statistics. Future theme ideas could focus on new technologies, advertising and marketing, developing countries or financial markets. Columns should not focus solely on MSB-related news.

Photos/Gifs: giphy.com, imgur.com, gifrific.com  

Apply to be a Summer Columnist

summer

From reflecting on experiences abroad, to analyzing academic issues, to examining science fiction novels, our summer columnists had a lot to share last year. Here is a sample of what Hoyas were writing about over the summer:

Ready for Rio, Allie Hillsbery
http://www.thehoya.com/from-tourist-to-native-in-rio/
“I’ve reached the point where I’ve stopped speaking English in grocery stores. I realized early on that eating lunch at restaurants every day was not going to work out, so now every other day I stop at the mercado for a small supply of fresh sandwich rolls. However, two times since my arrival, I have flown into a mild panic when other shoppers stopped me to ask questions in rapid-fire, heavily colloquial, to-me-incomprehensible Portuguese.”

An American Hoya in Japan, Celeste Chisholm
http://www.thehoya.com/finding-myself-where-i-couldnt-pretend-i-was-anything-else/
“Lately I notice that people here cannot help but notice me. Admittedly, there is no reason to blame them for their riveted gaze, as I fall far from the natural deviation of the average Japanese citizen, being naturally blonde, obviously American, and above all 5’11”. Out here, there is no escape from the fact that I differ in ways beyond mere physiology. Although at first a jarring sensation, living in an environment which so blatantly indicates my disparity has come to be somewhat liberating.”

Hoya Sapiens, Paul Healy
http://www.thehoya.com/reconsidering-the-humanities-crisis-part-i
“Over the past year, the humanities have come under close scrutiny in our public discourse. Last summer, Harvard release a report that showed a decline in enrollment in humanities majors. In January, President Obama took a shot at art history majors in a speech on education and the job market. All the while, voices in the national media have both questioned the value of the humanities and lamented their decline. First, what do we mean when we talk about the humanities? And what sort of crisis is happening?”

Back to Futures Past, Hannah Kaufman
http://www.thehoya.com/23002511/
“As I was reading ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy,’ a weird fictional book, ‘Encyclopedia Galactica,’ kept popping up in my mind. Intrigued, I decided to do a random Google search to see what would turn up. Lo and behold, I discovered that this fictional book actually originated from another fictional sci-fi series that began with the novel ‘Foundation.'”

What do you want to speak up about this summer?

Applications to be an online summer columnist for The Hoya are due Thursday at midnight. Visit http://www.thehoya.com/join-the-hoya to apply!

Photos: italiafutura.it

4E News Recap

4E News RecapMissed what was happening on the Hilltop this week? 4E has got you covered with some of The Hoya’s most recent headlines:

Georgetown Falls Short In Fellowship Awards – No Georgetown students won Rhodes, Marshall or Mitchell fellowships during this year’s application cycle.

#BBGU Prompts Discussion – A Twitter protest led by the Black House describes minority experiences at Georgetown.

GU Reacts to Mandela’s Death – Campus mourns the passing of the prolific South African activist.

Million-Dollar Mesclun: Sweetgreen Gets Investor – The M Street eatery, which has expanded to New York and Boston, will receive a $22 million investment from venture capital firm Revolution Growth.

A Name to Match Our Mission – Patrick Musgrave suggests naming the Northeast Triangle Residence Hall after Fr. Pedro Arrupe, S.J.

Epicurean Owner Denies Allegations of Abuse – Epicurean and Company owner Chang Wook Chon has not agreed to change business practices amid accusations of worker mistreatment.

Finding Their Own Way at GU – Children of three Georgetown basketball legends talk about their time on the Hilltop.

Hoyas Eliminated by Spartans in the NCAAs – The men’s soccer team lost 1-0 to Michigan State in the third round of the NCAA tournament.

Wanderlust – Hoyas detail their experiences of studying abroad around the globe.

Photo: Karl Pielmeier/The Hoya

Staffer of the Week: Katy Berk (and the Editorial Board)

Once a week, The Hoya recognizes a staffer that has done a particularly awesome job — now you can get to know about them, too. As part of our Leavey 421 series, we’ll be posting quick interviews with each Staffer of the Week. This week’s staffer of the week went out to the entire Editorial Board for their phenomenal work. We sat down with Ed Board Chair Katy Berk to get this week’s SOTW dish.

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Name Katy Berk
School College
Year 2016
Major History
Hometown Cambridge, Mass.
Positions on the Hoya Editorial board chair, Opinion editor

Why did you earn staffer of the week?

I’m the Chair of the Editorial Board and I’m also Opinion editor. This week was a huge week for us with the proposal of the Satellite Dorm. We have been involved in closed negotiations previously, and this was so exciting when this all opened up and we were finally able to talk to administrators one-on-one. We were also able to talk to Zach Singer and Nate Tisa to really get all sides of the issue and make one broad comment on it. We did three editorials and one 900-word piece weighing all the sides, showing the pros and cons and really trying to show campus all sides of what was going on. I think we pulled it off well and it got a lot of positive feedback from the campus community.

What’s your favorite part about working for The Hoya?

My favorite part about working for The Hoya is the handshake that happens after each production night. When we call in the issue on production night, the editor-in-chief (Danny Funt)  shakes everyone’s hand. It’s like all of this tension has built up throughout the night and then we just get to relax and hang out in the office until 3 am and it’s really fun. So I never thought I would like 2 am as much as I do and it’s all because of The Hoya.

You’ve just been asked to title Board Chair Evan Hollander’s biography. What would it be called?

I would title Evan’s memoir Off to the Races because that is the title of his column that he’s writing for us this semester. I think Evan likes to take a competitive, but fun approach to life. He really likes horse-racing and consulting and finance so that’s what I’d call it.

Pretend you’re making a teaser for the Ed Board as if it were a movie. What would it say?

Three staffers. Two community members. One weird table outside of Starbucks. 900 words about the Satellite Dorm proposal. What will they write about it?

On behalf of 4E, congratulations again to the entire Ed Board!

So You Want To Be a Hoya Columnist?

stack_of_newspapers copyGood news readers — you too can be a part of The Hoya. Applications for our fall semester columnists have just opened; you can find them all here on Facebook.

But what exactly does a columnist do? Columnists are Georgetown students (and a few professors) who write either every or every other week for the opinion or sports sections or The Guide. What you can write about depends on which section you want to write for. To help you figure out into which section your voice would best fit, I’ve rounded up some of my favorite columns from the last year.

Opinion

Mark Stern (COL ’13) wrote a column called Letters of the Law where he explored the Constitutional law underlying many hot button politic issues. He wrote about the Supreme Court’s handling of the oral arguments in Hollingsworth v. Perry (that’s the Prop 8 case), issues of the Second Amendment, and efforts of the D.C. Council to restrict students’ rights.

Khadijah Davis (COL ’15) wrote  The Ethnicity of Femininity, where she often spoke about issues related to feminism, race and diversity. Check out her columns about Beyoncé’s role as a feminist and how pluralism can be better acted upon at Georgetown.

My personal favorite column is As This Jesuit Sees It … which rotates between members of Georgetown’s Jesuit community. Fr. Matthew Carnes, S.J., wrote a column about viewing ourselves as part of a legacy of Georgetown students, Fr. Kevin O’Brien, S.J., wrote one more than a year ago about the problems of perfectionism and Fr. Patrick Rogers, S.J. provided some valuable perspective as finals bore down on campus.

The Guide

Preston Mui (COL ’13) wrote one of my personal favorite Guide columns: Burleith Bartender. Dedicated to keeping Georgetown’s consumption of mediocre drinks at bay, he shared recipes for pitchers that would please any party, his favorite ways to enjoy gin and the tools any novice bartender needs.

Allie Doughty (COL ’13) penned a column in the fall about the funny intricacies of language called Georgetown Babel. She wrote about the figurative language that makes up weird idioms and the different phrases you’ll hear on the different coasts. Nicole Jarvis (COL ’15) also wrote a lifestyle column entitled Pardon My French about the strange things that keep her ticking, from burritos with french fries in them to the Van Gogh socks that get her through midterms.

Allie Prescott (COL ’14) shared her music tastes in her column Amplify, from her favorite classy tunes to her feelings about the musical year that was. Zach Gordon (COL ’15) shared his slightly less conventional music tastes, from his defense of Selena Gomez to his love of Björk. And I’ve personally written a column called Girl Meets World where I talked about, amongst other things, how friendships don’t get enough screen time, what Liz Lemon of “30 Rock” meant to me and how there aren’t enough fat people on television.

Sports

Tom Hoff (MSB ’15) took some controversial opinions in his column Down to the Wire. He argued that we ought to forgive Michael Vick, explained how race played a role in the media coverage of UCLA’s Shabazz Muhammad and looked at how injuries just might end professional football as we know it.

Arik Parnass (COL ’15), the Candid Canadian, often talked about sports that don’t get as much coverage. He wrote about his love of tennis player Andy Roddick and the way nationalism complicates where international soccer players end up. Laura Wagner (COL ’15) explained how Novak Djokovic’s success might be tainted given tennis’ flawed drug testing.

Former senior sports editors Pat Curran (COL ’14) and Evan Hollander (SFS ’14)  shared a column about the Men’s Basketball team. Reading Pat’s NCAA tournament hopes, while humorous, still stings a bit in light of how things turned out. In the emotional turmoil of Georgetown’s loss, Evan laid out how difficult it was to find the reason why they can’t find postseason success.

That’s only the tip of the iceberg, though. Click around our website, look at the applications and apply by August 5th!