How did Drury prepare you for life after college?
How would you describe the faculty at Drury?
What has been one of the highlights of your career?
"Never stop following the path of your dreams."
Jason Rima, a 1997 Drury graduate, enjoys the distinction of having one of the most recognized voices in southwest Missouri. With his signature radio signoff as a reporter for KTTS News, Jason is well known throughout Springfield for delivering news and traffic updates each day. Before taking to the streets and delivering the news, though, Jason was a communication student at Drury, where he developed the skills and experience to excel in his profession.
According to Jason, the transition from college student to professional reporter was a fairly easy one due to the preparation that he received at Drury through internships, coursework and real-life application.
“I just really felt like I was ready for the real world," he say. "Here I had the resume and I got my degree, but I had more than just that,” Jason says. “I had served as an intern at a major newspaper and a small town newspaper, so I felt like when I walked in the door, I had something I could hand to my potential employer and say ‘Here, I’m ready. You can take me and just put me to work right now.’”
Beyond getting hands-on experience from seasoned professionals, Jason also learned valuable skills to help him work as part of a team, a trait that he says is vital in the professional world.
“That’s something that a potential employer really likes is somebody who knows how to work in a team setting,” he says. “At Drury, they put you in those situations and things that maybe you’re not used to and then you can develop that before you go into the real world.”
Recalling the Past and Looking Ahead
When Jason wasn’t working toward his degree, he enjoyed attending sporting events and supporting the Panthers athletic programs.
“I think the fondest memory I have of Drury is going to sporting events,” Jason says. “I’m a real sports nut, and so it was neat to be able to come to a campus that was small, but yet, has so many different things going on.”
And as he recalls his own days as a Drury student, Jason offers some words of advice for today’s students.
“First of all, never stop following the paths of your dreams,” Jason says. “If there’s something that you want to do, keep trying to do that as long as you can even if it takes you in a different direction.”
He also encourages students to continue learning, even after they've crossed the stage in the O'Reilly Family Event Center on commencement day.
“I would also tell students to never stop learning even after you get out of college because you never know what you’re going to run into at work where you have to learn new skills or talents,” Jason says.