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Hilary Johnson - Engaged in Learning

Journalism student Hillary Johnson in broadcast control room

If Hillary Johnson had to choose one word to describe her program, what would it be?

Engaging, she says.

“Everything — the way you learn — is so hands-on. And your teachers are so engaged and so invested in teaching you what you’ll need to know in the industry. And they know because they’ve been there, or they still are.”

Hillary says this style of teaching made starting her program at Sheridan much less intimidating.

“Being a new student, you’re always quite nervous, but everyone was super friendly,” she says. “Sheridan’s a very friendly, inviting school. You don’t need to feel intimidated or scared after you walk through those front doors because there are people there who are truly invested in your future. It’s something you feel right away, from the first day.”

Hillary says it was her older brother who got her interested in journalism. “That’s what he always talked about doing. He didn’t end up pursuing journalism, but I did. I definitely look up to him.”

Once her career path was chosen, Hillary says Sheridan felt like the logical choice — and one she’s glad she made. “I just love being able to practice everything. You learn to use the equipment, what goes on behind the scenes. You get a feel for what actually goes on at a real television station.”

This style of hands-on learning extends beyond the studio, Hillary says. “You’re allowed to rent out high tech gear and equipment. They throw you right into the deep end with it all. It’s exhilarating. It’s the best way to get the hang of it.”

Outside the classroom, Hillary has found opportunities to apply what she’s learned in a real-world context. She volunteers at her local cable station, reporting and producing news stories. And she hopes to do her upcoming co-op term at a major TV station. Her dream placement? “I would really love to go to CBC and shadow either a producer or even Peter Mansbridge. He’s one of my idols.”

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