Express-News business reporter tells journalism students to make connections

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Laura Garcia, business reporter at the San Antonio Express-News and former Ranger reporter, gives advice to the journalism-photography students Sept. 27 in Loftin. Garcia, who was a features editor at Victoria, Texas, advised students to be unafraid to ask for help prioritizing stories with their schedules. Andrea Moreno

Reporters should understand the impact of stories on their readers, she said.

By Linda Owens

sac-ranger@alamo.edu

Learn to work with others now before experiencing a tough situation and getting overwhelmed, a business reporter with the San Antonio Express-News and a former Ranger editor, encouraged The Ranger staff, Sept. 27 in Loftin Student Center.

“Be open to listen to other people to gain their perspective,” Garcia said.

Garcia took the long route to college, attending first in 2005 and finding it difficult because she did not have a car.

After coming back in 2009, she completed the journalism program in 2011. Garcia was nominated and awarded Journalist of the Year from the Texas Community College Journalism Association.

“I feel like I learned everything right here. I had started right out of high school,” Garcia said.

Garcia suggested students make lists and avoid being so hard on themselves. Being organized helped her when she was a reporting intern at the Longview News-Journal.

“There is a learning curve. Don’t be your own island, and ask for help from your editors. That is a lesson that I took with me on my first job,” Garcia said.

Garcia said that when covering a beat, she learned to be observant, ask questions, make connections, talk to people and follow them on social media.

“Listen to others and keep up to date on your beat. Learn what the audience wants and why it is important to them. Find out what impact it has on them,” she said.

She came back to San Antonio six months ago after working five years at the Victoria Advocate in Victoria. She was the features editor there when she left.

Garcia reminded reporters to self-edit their stories before turning them in.

“Make sure your story is accurate and on point with few corrections and has context,” Garcia said.

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