Previous Knight Errant Writers Use Their Journalism Skills After BSM


Courtesy of the Knight Errant Website

A look back at the old Knight Errant writer staff.

Once the face of the Knight Errant, prior journalism students have graduated and are taking what they learned within the class and applying it to new life experiences. Here is a look at what some of them are up to now, how BSM helped them move forward into their future, and how journalism specifically helped them with life skills.

Going off to college is a big change for people, especially when students have been within the same school walls for the past few years of their lives. Luckily, BSM has set up students for success both academically and socially. “I definitely think that BSM gave me a great foundation going into college and the real world. I was prepared for the rigorous coursework that college brought on. I was also prepared for the large amount of networking that comes with being in the field of business. I held an internship at BSM as a Marketing and Communications Intern which gave me a portfolio at a very young age that I was able to give to future employers. I always appreciate the BSM community and gained many valuable connections from going to the school,” Liv Schmitz, BSM 2020 graduate who now attends the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said.

While students do think that BSM set them up for success in college, not everything was perfect. Some opportunities were not presented to BSM students as they were to other students across the country, leaving them behind in some aspects. “The one thing that I wish was integrated into the BSM curriculum earlier is offering dual enrollment classes at the local community colleges so students could go into college with even more credits. In Iowa many students come in with over a semester worth of credits,” Sadie Witterschein, BSM 2022 graduate who now attends Iowa State University, said.

Specifically, journalism helped these students far more than they expected, and actually has added valuable life skills to their everyday college life academically. The layout of the class and the unique style of stories has set past students up for success. “I never liked writing papers previous to KE, but for some reason, the format of writing a journalism story kind of clicked with me. I only had to do one English class in college, but I vividly remember for my final paper I did not want to get started on it at all, and I thought ‘I’ll just write this like it’s a Knight Errant story.’ So I wrote it in the same format I used for so many of my stories at KE, and I got it done and ended up getting compliments from my professor,” Maggie Anderson, BSM 2020 graduate who now attends the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said.

I only had to do one English class in college, but I vividly remember for my final paper I did not want to get started on it at all, and I thought ‘I’ll just write this like it’s a Knight Errant story.’

— Maggie Anderson

Many students also agree with Anderson that journalism really helped strengthen their writing skills. The process and style of writing in the class really helped prepare for college. “Journalism helped me immensely with my writing skills, which have never been my strong suit . Especially because all of my writing went through so many revisions, I was able to anticipate those as I continued to write more. As a marketing major, there is a lot of writing involved and Journalism helped me speed up and improve my writing and revision process,” Schmitz said.

Beyond the writing aspect of journalism, the other life lessons taught in Knight Errant helped the graduates have a wide variety of skills going into college. They then used their knowledge and skills to their advantage and to help others. “Writing for the Knight Errant has helped me a lot with interviews. Journalism taught me the proper way to interview, such as what questions to ask, how to create a proper written copy of the dialogue. I wasn’t expecting to use those skills in college as much as I have and it has made many assignments easier and it’s also allowed me to help others,” Witterschein said.

The environment of the class, the people, and the teachers put a positive stamp on past Knight Errant writers’ high school experience, and journalism specifically. “Beyond [the writing], KE was definitely a memorable class for me. I had an incredible experience with the teachers who ran it when I was there, and the environment that they provided for the class allowed me to improve as a writer and as a student in so many ways. The classes that are set up in a way where the teachers set the expectations and goals and then set you on your own to do it work really well for me,” Anderson said.

After BSM, students enter a new type of school that they have never really experienced before. They are moving away from family and close friends, living independently for the first time, and meeting new people. College has its ups and downs, and things students are loving but also things that are more difficult. “College is going really well, I’ve made the best friends and had so many great experiences. The school is amazing at welcoming everyone and the area is so nice, especially with it being right near a huge lake. The only thing I don’t love is the fact that the school itself can be a little hard to get to in terms of coming from out of state, but it’s worth it for the weather down here,” Tilly Wolfe, BSM 2022 graduate who now attends Clemson University, said.

The school load is also a change for these students. Finding the balance between free time and school work can be challenging, especially for freshmen. “If I have any free time I’m usually working on assignments or studying for exams. If I’m lucky and don’t have a busy week I will spend time with my friends around campus or go to my sorority house,” Witterschein said.

This past spring, many juniors in college studied abroad and got to experience a whole new way of life. Currently, many of these students are wrapping up their semester in another country. “I am currently an exchange student at the University of Copenhagen studying abroad for a semester in Denmark. Being able to travel and see so much of the world has been such an incredible experience, and I have definitely been able to grow a lot as a person,” Anderson said.

Moving forward into the future, many students are using their skills and knowledge from highschool and college, as well as their passions, and applying it to summer internships. “This summer, I am interning at Polaris as a Marketing Intern… I am majoring in Marketing and Graphic Design and I am hoping to work in a creative and collaborative environment where my skills and strengths will help me thrive. I will hopefully be working with a company that aligns with my values. I also hope to have my hand in videography, photography, and social media,” Schmitz said.

Other opportunities outside academics are showing up for old Knight Errant writers, and giving them valuable things to add to their resumes in the future. “I had an interview for the Thomas F. Chapman Leadership program here at Clemson which is very exciting, so I will find out next week whether I get a spot or not. 14 people are chosen from each grade and 8 of them are from the business school and there is one student from each of the other schools within Clemson,” Wolfe said.

Journalism students are doing great things out in the real world and a lot of these successes came from right inside the BSM walls, where these students spent years learning and growing.