LOS ANGELES, Ca - A 30-year old Burbank woman was astounded to discover this week that UCLA Extension courses require attendees to "learn stuff", a roommate reported. "I shoulda taken that wine-tasting course instead," Tara Ochs muttered, as she begrudgingly logged off her MySpace page and began an assignment due tomorrow.
UCLA Extension course "Basic Skills in Writing for the News Media" is offered every semester at UCLA, and is a pre-requisite to obtaining a Journalism Certificate through the highly respected university. It's title is "misleading" though, complains the Burbank resident. "News Media could be anything," insists Ochs, "from fashion magazines to entertainment industry broadcasts."
Ochs, who is only enrolled in the single once-a-week Winter semester course, has expressed interest in a career change, specifically in the field of Video Game Journalism, said a long-time friend. Her penchant for playing console-based RPGs was also noted by her roommate, Ryan Smith.
But the UCLA course is no tutorial mode for impulsive career-hoppers, and it does not lend itself to a gifted imagination. "This course is not for writers with a capital W," warns the professor of the Basic Skills course. A career in journalism is a low-paying, thankless job which requires self-motivation and a great deal of reporting skills, according to Professor Gougis.
Which is not what the former-actor Ochs wants to hear. "Why do I continue to flush out career paths like this? Acting, video games, journalism? Where's the driving urge to be a lawyer or an engineer?" Ochs' parents have also been asking their daughter similar questions.
Tara Ochs is still enrolled at UCLA, as of press time.