picture of Eliana Pabon

The Road So Far

Hello, I am Eliana Pabon, an aspiring journalist at the University of Florida. I was born in Medellin, Colombia and grew up with dreams of being a gypsy. I wanted to be like the gypsies of Gabriel Garcia Marquez who brought the new wonders of the outside world to Macondo. During high school I realized that I could fulfill my childhood dream and make a difference in the world by becoming a journalist. To me journalism is not only about informing people about the day-to-day occurrences, but also bringing humanity together by common knowledge.

So throughout high school I was a writer and copy editor for the school newspaper, The Knight Times. Additionally I was a member and the first president of the International Spanish Academy in my school. The International Spanish Academy gave me the opportunity to advance my language studies. Meanwhile I was also interacting with the students from our sister school in Spain. The academy was also a way for me to learn about the different Spanish speaking cultures in my community of West Palm Beach. Concurrently the newspaper enabled me to affect what was happening in my school and become civically active.

During my senior year of high school, I shadowed Joel Engelhardt, who was at the time an editorial writer for the Palm Beach Post. Then at the beginning of 2009 the Palm Beach Post published an editorial written by me called Good Deeds, Worse Betrayal. After seeing my name in print on the by-line there was no going back. Feeling the effect my words could have on the way people thought about an issue made me fully grasp the importance of journalists.

Afterwards during my first year of college at Palm Beach State, I volunteered to be a student editor for Sabiduria. Sabiduria was a Palm Beach State student written and reviewed scholarly publication. Now at the University of Florida I write an online blog for my Reporting for Online Media class. My beat is community service in Gainesville and everyday I fall more in love with my major. I know that the majority of important stories are usually tragedies, but when we break our motto; if it bleeds, it leads, then we see that there are also powerful stories of resilience, persistence, and success. In the future I hope to also remember that journalism shows us all the aspects of life. So that even during the times I am a transmitter of horror, I will not believe I live in a mean world; because I will know a happy ending is just around the corner.