Saturday, February 14, 2009

Contributor Bio: Mike Corey

They shot the white girl first.

So it was for the first ever Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, perhaps the most iconic annual in the brief history of print journalism. But it is equally instructive in demonstrating journalism's 150-year rise and fall, blossoming before it was a sense of entertainment, and then taking a turn for the worse as muckraking and skin slowly surrounded the industry and forced the quality stuff into a virtual Thermopylae. It remains there still, fighting a massive army of cloned magazines and newspapers, indistinct and undistinguished all. But even the booby-tassled-horde that has made its living at grocery store checkout lines has begun to sag, as the internet gives readers access to more. And for free.

That plague long ago overtook television news, particularly after Rupert Murdoch decided that he didn't need broadcasters, but articulate models and actresses in order to draw a crowd, sprinkling in a few shock jocks to bring'em back for more. The Howard Stern School of Journalism.

This was once the industry I hoped to join while an undergraduate at Duke University. But during the 2004 presidential race, the indirectness of journalism dissuaded me from seeking it out as a career, and pushed me toward something that struck me as more urgent and satisfying: education. I still love to write—and am eager to do so with such a talented group of individuals on this blog—but have gone down a different path since my days as a sports and news magazine editor at Duke.

I moved back to Columbus, Ohio upon graduating, and began work at the Ohio Board of Regents as an educational consultant. This ambiguous term essentially meant that I was, euphemistically, a utility player willing to do whatever project was sent my way. I enjoyed it enough to pursue a master's in education administration, which I obtained from Ohio State in 2007. I then worked on a local political campaign for a few months, then at a non-profit called the Children's Hunger Alliance, and have since returned to the Board of Regents, where I will remain until fall when I will matriculate in law school.

Although my career has gone down a different path, I continue my writing hobby through, a sports column for GoDuke and by being a member of the USBWA.

The rest you'll learn in time. In the meantime, enjoy the latest Swimsuit Issue. It hit newsstands Wednesday.

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