Amant has an unconventional path to journalism


Amant presents her speech to young journalists as they key note speaker.

Kylee Wing, Editor

As she stood on the stage in a black and white dress before students and teachers, field producer Claire St. Amant spoke as the keynote speaker at  the TAJE Fall Fiesta journalism convention.

Amants unconventional journey from college journalism major to CBS News reporter started in the peace corps.

“I knew I wanted to be this journalist,” Amant said. “But I wanted a broader base to pull from.”

So with that, she began the rigorous application process. Six months later, she was 6,000 miles away from home sleeping in the closet of a Ukrainian family’s home, pumping water from a well, and using an outhouse that was about 100 yards away from the house. During part of her one-year stay, she taught English as a foreign language to third through 11th graders.

“It was very challenging,” Amant said. “You learn a lot about yourself when you’re alone, hand washing your own clothes and grinding meat and walking miles in the snow to get to the class you have to teach.”

When she returned home to her suburban, Christian life in the United States, she felt she was once again ready to pursue her dream of being a journalist. She started small and broad, which somehow led her to her current beat of crime journalism.

“I worked for a community newspaper initially covering local school district and city council,” Amant said.

As she continued her passion for crime journalism, she had her own bumps in the road, such as being denied  jobs she thought were her best shot. As she kept writing, more doors opened up for her crime journalism career.

“It’s the beat that keeps on giving,” Amant said. “I will never be out of a job because people will never stop committing crimes.”

Being a journalist, Amant gets to live the experiences she never would have been able to in any other career.

“It’s amazing to be able to have the opportunity to speak to the people in the top of their field,” Amant said. “I get to interview scholars in their fields and all sorts of experts and I get access to that because i’m a journalist.”

As Amant continued her journalism career, she was able to get the chance to speak to high school journalists and give them motivation and insight for continuing the path of journalism.

“Journalism is a great place for smart inquizitive people,” Amant said. “Otherwise known as dorks in high school.”

Being a baylor graduate, a peace corps returner, and a journalist, Amant is proud to be on the path she was born to take.

“That’s my unconventional path of where I ended up today,” Amant said.