This is a cartoon character graphic of Lauren Harrelson. It is shown on almost every page of the web site, on the left side of the screen above an additional vertical navigation menu.

About Me

About This Website

This site serves as my professional portfolio — a reference for potential employers and tutoring clients.

How & Why I Switched
from Journalism to Education

I love what I do now: serving others as a writing tutor at Three Rivers Community College in Norwich, CT.

Before I started tutoring professionally, I was a journalist, specifically a copyeditor. It's not modest to say, but I was quite good at it.

I received my Bachelor of Arts, summa cum laude (4.0), from the University of Arizona in 2009. As I pursued my degree, I worked tirelessly to gain experience in the news industry before I graduated.

I served in various roles on campus and at professional newspapers: page designer, copyeditor, copy chief, reporter, online editor, managing editor, and editor in chief. The full details can be found on my resume.

These efforts paid off: I had a job offer from Gannett, at USA Today, on the morning of my graduation. They were so kind to call me beforehand so that, as they said, I would have two things to celebrate that day.

Turning them down — stepping away from job security and away from the field I had pursued since 8th grade — was one of the most daring things I've ever done. Without the encouragment from my mentors, especially Don Hecker (a senior editor at the New York Times), I don't think I would have had the courage to do it.

I've never regretted that leap of faith, and I am so grateful for it.

In my final semester of college, I realized how much I disliked being stuck at a computer in the newsroom for 8 to 10 hours a day, reading about war, poverty, crime, and other horrible things happening around the world. I was good at the job, but it was quite depressing.

So, I asked myself when I had been happiest, and I realized it was all the times I had worked as an educator:

When I worked as a writing tutor on campus; when I led a workshop on Audacity for print journalists; when I showed a woman in her early 70s how to use PrintMaster so she could make her own greeting cards; when I helped staff at the campus newspaper learn how to use InDesign or how to copyedit better — all of these experiences were there, always trying to nudge me down the right path, but I didn't realize it until the end.

As of August 2014, I am pursuing my Master of Science in educational technology at Eastern Connecticut State University. I anticipate finishing my studies by December 2015 and applying to be an adjunct English professor at a community college soon thereafter. I adore tutoring, but teaching in the classroom will give me the opportunity to have a larger impact, to have a greater part in students' academic growth.