Siock wrote for Rider’s award-winning student newspaper The Rider News. While on staff, she held the position of executive editor in her senior year and arts and entertainment editor during her junior year.
Every summer during her college years, Siock interned full-time at the Bucks County Courier Times working as a newsroom reporter writing breaking news, community-based stories and long-form assignments.
Siock transferred to Rider from Bucks County Community College and maintained a 4.0 GPA throughout her entire collegiate career.
Siock entered Rider as a transfer student during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Starting anew can be intimidating for many transfer students, but doing so during the COVID-19 pandemic posed unprecedented challenges even for highly ambitious students like Siock. As a transfer student from Bucks County Community College, Siock chose to attend Rider because of the strong relationship the University has with the community college along with the investment of resources Rider offers to support transfer students. Additionally, because of her academic achievements, she was awarded various merit scholarships upon acceptance.
However, due to the COVID-induced switch to remote learning, when she transferred to Rider, she was not initially met with the experience she hoped to have while completing her bachelor’s education. Living an hour away from campus and being forced to take classes from her bedroom, she worried that she’d never make a personal connection with the University.
“I felt disconnected from the Rider community and was upset my short time at Rider was becoming even more limited.”
Joining the student newspaper helped Siock find her place at Rider.
Rather than letting the pandemic restrictions deter her from finding a sense of belonging, the journalism major decided to join Rider’s independent student newspaper The Rider News for opportunities to have her work published.
“I was worried there would not be a role for me to step into since I was a transfer student. However, I was able to be set up with my first story assignment before I even took my first class at Rider. I wrote for the paper for a few weeks and by chance, there was an open editor job for the arts and entertainment section. I was offered the job and immediately accepted. I was finally starting to feel like I found my place at Rider.”
Working for The Rider News was the most impactful experience of my time at Rider. I grew so much as a student journalist, and working there gave me irreplaceable on-the-job experience.”
The Rider News also helped her to develop invaluable career and leadership skills
“As executive editor, I oversaw a 20-person student staff consisting of writers, editors, photographers and more. I was responsible for editing all stories before publication in the weekly paper as well as writing stories for the paper's news section. I also held weekly staff meetings and approved all articles for publication.”
She continues, “I was able to overcome my initial fears and hesitations by stepping out of my comfort zone and joining The Rider News, despite it being such an unusual year. Working for The Rider News was the most impactful aspect of my college career. The experience helped me grow so much as a person. I learned to be persistent and confident in the work I produced.”
As someone responsible for funding myself through college, the scholarships I received from Rider made a huge difference in my experience as a student. I was able to focus solely on my academics without having to work extra jobs to cover tuition.”
Now, she’s attending the University of Maryland on a full-ride scholarship.
Siock is currently studying journalism at the University of Maryland and is a fellow at The Howard Center for Investigative Journalism. As part of her fellowship, she is working with a team of reporters on a journalism investigation led by the Associated Press’ global investigations team.
She credits Rider faculty, particularly Dr. Jackie Incollingo, who is also an advisor to The Rider News, for being both instrumental in her growth as a student and journalist and helping guide her through the application process for graduate school.
“My experience at The Rider News helped me secure a full-tuition scholarship for grad school. Without my clips from The Rider News and my leadership experience, I would not have been considered for the scholarship and would not have been able to enroll in the program."
College of Arts and Sciences: School of Communication, Media and Performing Arts
Rider’s School of Communication, Media and Performing Arts is the perfect place to cultivate your artistic ability. You’ll explore your creative purpose in a connected community of emerging talent, build technical skills specific to your field of interest and develop foundational knowledge that can be applied to various areas within the evolving creative industry.