Four of the best years of my life followed. The control freak in me thrived in the grammar and copy editing classes and the nerd in me relished the thought of curling up with my AP Stylebook for a little light reading.
I joined the staff of The Parthenon, Marshall's student newspaper, and became the editor my junior year. I learned how to create a newspaper, every day, from start to finish, and how make the day's news fit exactly on the page.
I also became a contributing writer for The Daily Independent in Ashland, Ky., writing one feature story each week. I had arrived -- at $40 a week, I was a paid journalist. And for a college kid in 1995, having an extra $40 a week was like hitting the lottery.
After graduating from journalism school, I began my 15-year career at The State Journal as an assistant editor and later as managing editor.
Although I have put my first love on hold to raise my three children, I'm still, technically, a paid journalist at The State Journal as a part-time copy editor.
I still love the feeling of a newspaper in my hands. Not a computer screen, not some fancy electronic reader, but real, ink-covered paper.
Twenty years later, I have FlipSide to thank for all of it. The magazine opened up a career path I never would have discovered on my own.
Keep up the good work, FlipSide. I hope you inspire another 20 years' worth of young journalists.
Brandi Kidd Jamerson graduated from South Charleston High School in 1992. She is a copy editor at The State Journal.