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My Worst Nightmare: Being a Journalist With a Stutter

All my life I've had trouble expressing my voice. It’s not because I’m shy, or because I am a very outgoing person. The reason is because of my speech impediment. I’m a stutter and it will always be a part of me. Sure, I took speech therapy since I was nine and overcame my obstacles of fear of expression, but now that I have decided to move to Orlando and pursue my major in Journalism, I feel like that fear of expression may return.

Being a journalist is all about meeting new people and producing a story from their lives, however, to do that I have to open my mouth and find people -strangers- to open up and trust me with their past and experiences. I must say that scares me since I have a fear of messing up and not being clear with my speech. I’m glad to know that writing is my way of expression and freedom, but the hardest part is being outgoing on the inside, but awkward on the outside.

Here I am at this new school, thinking how there's 62,000 exceptional students all wanting to make a difference in their lives, and how much I want to do the same. So many people are networking and finding people to turn to in hopes of changing their dreams into a reality of becoming a journalist, and I'm one of them. If only it was that easy to do. I know that when something new happens to me, whether it’s moving, or meeting new people, my stutter acts up. Some people say they don’t notice but for me it’s terrifying, frustrating, and humiliating.

Try thinking of stage fright. Being on a podium and your stomach drops from fear. That’s the feeling I get when I stutter. And I have this vision of me representing myself as Oliva Pope, so strong and fearless, but I’m awkward instead. It’s the battle of two worlds clashing with the hope of just being heard, the hope of having my voice scream out with courage, confidence, and clarity.

So, will I be able to overcome this bumpy road? I hope so. I have a passion of investigating new stories in the world and communicating my point of view on issues that are important to me. I know of anchors, and even actors, who have stuttered and overcame their obstacles- which made them champions in the eyes of hopefuls. I hope that I can be a part of their world, to bring a spotlight to all the speech impediments, and tell them they’re not alone. I can hear you so clearly.  

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Hi my name is Amanda Osorio! I am a Junior at UCF, majoring in Journalism and minoring in Women's Studies! I love to read the True Blood series and eat Pei Wei's spicy Chicken Pad Thai while watching Game of Thrones, Scandal, Empire, Scrubs, American Horror Story and so much more! I call myself a nostalgic person since I should have been raised in the 1970's since I LOVE that era, from the fashion, movies, and music. My dreams will be complete with my purple flower record player and baby blue typewriter. A girl can dream with her eyes open <3 <3
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