Cochrane Hiking Club kicks off 2012 season
As you will be seeing a new face representing the editorial team of the Airdrie City View and Rocky View Weekly at various area events and proceedings, it only makes sense that I formally introduce myself.
I am a 23-year-old writing and photography enthusiast who answers to the name Kimberley Massey, and who is lucky enough to have found a career through which she is paid to do what she loves.
I came on board with the City View/Rocky View Weekly last Monday, April 30, having spent the previous 18 months working as the sole reporter/photographer for an independent weekly community newspaper in Crowsnest Pass, Alberta known as the Crowsnest Pass Herald.
Prior to my time in the Pass, I began my professional journalism career as a lowly intern, being shared by three newspapers in Southern Alberta – the High River Times, Nanton News and Vulcan Advocate.
Over the past two years, I have striven to hone my skills in reporting community news and telling the stories of the colourful individuals with whom this career allows me to cross paths, as well as strengthening the abilities I possess with a camera.
As a result of this, and due in the largest part to the amazing people and events which I have encountered, I was a recipient of one of the Alberta Weekly Newspaper Association (AWNA) and ATCO Gas’ 2011 Photographic Awards at the annual AWNA symposium this past February, as well as a sports feature writing award through the Better Newspapers Competition Awards of Excellence, which were presented at the AWNA spring conference on May 4 in Calgary.
My relative success in the Alberta journalism industry is owed almost entirely to the excellent education, direction and support I received from the instructors of the Journalism Arts program at SAIT Polytechnic from 2007 to 2009.
These brilliant men and women played a major role in making me who I am and building on the scattered, unfocused interest I had in journalism when I entered the program. A time when I had no idea exactly what I intended to do with my life, or what I expected of an education in this field.
Before I landed in their hands so they could shape and influence me, I grew up in Vulcan, Alberta.
The eccentric and colourful members of my small immediate and large extended family, as well as a handful of teachers and friends, were the ones who pushed me to pursue writing and photography as a career after high school.
My mother encouraged me to write from a very young age, insisting that I keep a diary in order to record my thoughts, and ever since I have enjoyed few things more than writing.
Later on, my older sister and one of my biggest personal heroes, Cori, used me as her model while she was taking a photography course in high school, prompting me to develop a keen interest in that art form at the young age of eight years.
In my junior high and high school years, I spent a great deal of my time volunteering and being involved in my local youth club, which eventually led me to consider a career in child and youth care, social work, or early childhood development.
At the same time, my love of writing and taking photos never faded and I continued to pursue those as well, excelling in the same photography class my sister had enjoyed so much, as well as English.
During the year I took off from my studies following graduation from high school in 2006, I decided to follow my heart and enroll in the journalism program at SAIT, seeing it as the most practical and logical application of my interests.
It was the best decision I have ever made.
To be able to come on board with the staff of these publications three years after my graduation from SAIT is only icing on the cake, as I now get to live and work in the area I love, allowing me to be close to my family and friends, who make my world.
I hope to see you around, and if you ever have a question or a comment, feel free to drop me a line.