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How She Got There: Tehrene Firman, Web Editor at J-14 Magazine


Name: Tehrene Firman
Age: 23
Job Title and Description: Web Editor for J-14.com. I make sure the website is updated with breaking celebrity news, conduct interviews with today's top stars, write up fun features and update the magazine's social media accounts.
College/Major: University of Northern Iowa/Communication major with a minor in Journalism
Website: http://www.tehrene.com
Twitter Handle: @tehrene

What does your current job entail? Is there such a thing as a typical day?

Tehrene Firman: As a web editor, it's pretty much a 24/7 job making sure the site is the go-to spot for teens to get their celebrity news fix. On a typical day, I'll be writing up stories on the latest One Direction and Justin Bieber gossip and maybe doing an interview to get an exclusive story from one of our top stars—it's almost too much fun to be considered a job!

What is the best part of your job?

TF: The best part of my job is getting to work with teens. They're the coolest, most enthusiastic age group to write for because their reaction to everything is always priceless. They're incredibly passionate, and it's always really interesting to interact with them through social media. I love getting an inside look on exactly what their lives revolve around, which is mostly whom Harry Styles is dating.

What was your first entry-level job in your field and how did you get it?

TF: This is actually my first job out of college! I saw the job listing go up and applied a couple months before I graduated last spring and ended up going in for an interview. Surprisingly, it was the only job I even applied for.

What is one thing you wish you knew about your industry when you first started out that you know now?

TF: I kind of knew this from interning, but you don't really realize how connected everyone is in the magazine world until you're really in it. It's crazy—I feel like it's almost like a high school where everyone knows everyone, no matter what company you work for.

Who is one person who changed your professional life for the better?

TF: I have a couple people that really stand out. Tammy Tibbetts, a former magazine editor who is currently changing the world with She's the First, connected with me on Twitter years ago and has been one of my biggest supporters ever since. Devin Tomb has also been such an amazing mentor ever since I interned for her at Seventeen last summer. Both of these women taught me so much and I feel very lucky to have them in my life.

What words of wisdom do you find most valuable?

TF: This is pretty general, but "stand out." In a world where everyone is working so hard to fit in, the people that go above and beyond to make themselves different are the ones who are going to succeed. This is a very competitive industry, so you need to make yourself memorable.

What advice would you give to a 20-something with similar aspirations?

TF: Get as much experience as you possibly can. Obviously your grades are important, but the people who will be hiring you are looking for someone who really knows what they're doing. Write as much as you can, get editing experience, and if there aren't many options where you're from, don't let that stop you. I'm from an incredibly small town in Iowa and started my own online magazine to get experience. Your hard work won't go unnoticed. Trust me.

Fill out my online form.

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