On October 25, Mr. Walter Baranger (1974), a senior editor of news operations at the New York Times, visited University High School (UHS) journalism classes. A graduate of the class of 1974, Baranger was one of the first students to graduate from UHS at its establishment.S&S: What activities did you take part of as a student at UHS? WB: After taking part in the school newspaper for two years, I decided to do yearbook. I was the ASB Vice President from ‘73-‘74.
S&S: What is your current career?
WB: I’m a senior editor for the news operations in the New York Times. The news operations include Foreign Bureaus, National Bureaus, Communications, and Computer facilities.
S&S: What inspired you to pursue journalism as a career?
WB: I initially made money by taking pictures for the Irvine World News, but I decided there was no money in that, and I later joined the Navy. I ended up in the Coast Guard Reserve. Afterwards I actually decided to do engineering, and I started at Cal State Fullerton with an engineering major for two years. Later, I changed majors to journalism. Cal State Fullerton has a terrific journalism program and is probably the strongest in the state.
S&S: How would you describe the current journalism industry?
WB: Journalism is a tough industry. Often, it requires you to travel to many countries. I’ve traveled to twelve wars and sixty countries. I’ve had moments when I thought “Why am I here?” It can take an emotional toll on you.
S&S: What advice do you have for students who are interested in pursuing journalism as a career?
WB: My advice, if you get a journalism degree, would be to do a double major or minor in something serious, such as International Relations or Economics, and think seriously about getting a Masters. The more expertise you have, the more job opportunities you will have, and a double major or minor serves as coverage if you change your mind on which major you want to do.
Written by KRUTHI REDUCHINTALA