Monday, June 30, 2014

Christina Jedra: Xtina’s Journalist Alter Ego

Before becoming a journalist Christina Jedra wanted to be Christina Aguilera.

The New Jersey native and senior at Emerson College once aspired to be the singer belting out her song “I Will Be,” any time she got the chance.

Jedra further exercised her vocal cords by joining her high school choir and also performed the role of Sandy in the musical production Grease. Although she considered college musical theater programs, she ultimately chose to major in journalism, a nod to her longtime passion for magazines.

Throughout her media career she has interviewed numerous public figures including Oscar-nominated actor Terrence Howard and longtime Cosmopolitan magazine editor Kate White. Nonetheless, she would love to interview Christina Aguilera one day.

“Xtina is my girl,” she said.

This past spring semester she also studied abroad in Greece exploring her cultural heritage and further honing her journalistic skills.

“While I was there I couldn’t stop writing. I couldn’t give myself a break,” she says. “I’ve been doing some type of journalism thing since I was 15.” To satisfy the urge to write, she started her own travel blog where she documented everything from donkey rides to her packing regrets. “I would love to go back,” she said. “It was like nothing I’ve ever seen before.”

Determined to work in magazines, she discovered the ASME program during her freshman year trolling through Google for internships. After realizing she was too young to apply, Jedra set her sights on scoring as many gigs as possible waiting for the day she could apply.

Jedra not only managed a successful travel blog, but also scored opportunities at Boston Magazine, The Boston Globe, Twist Magazine and USA Today College throughout the last three years. “To prepare for ASME I did tons of research and tons of informational interviews. I did internships and just a lot of teaching myself what I needed to know through Ed2010 and Google,” she says.

Preparations paid off as toys and friendly faces now surround Jedra, interning at Parents magazine this summer.

“I really feel like Parents is the place for me,” she says. “I think my qualifications match up perfectly with what the magazine does and I’m blown away at how nice everyone is.” Jedra is enjoying the familial atmosphere, taking all the assignments she can and has been blogging for the website. Interns tend to have horror stories, but at Parents, she feels like an integral part of the team.

Describing herself as driven, Jedra can see herself living in New York after graduation working at either a women’s service magazine or a general interest magazine. But no matter where she goes, she aspires to make a positive difference in people's lives through her writing.

Written by Alexis Reliford, Northwestern State University, ESSENCE 
Edited by Dora Grote, University of Iowa, Washingtonian

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