4 May 2018

On the occasion of the International Day of Freedom of Expression, investigative journalist Jeta Xharra gave a lecture to students of AAB College – Gjakova branch, on “Opportunities and challenges for career guidance and freedom of expression.”

During this lecture, journalist Xharra shared the difficulties she went through at the beginning of her career as a journalist.

“Becoming a journalist was not my dream. My dream was to enroll in dramaturgy, and become a dramaturge”, she confessed, explaining that for such a decision she did not even have the support of her parents because, according to her parents, this profession would be without profits.

Journalist Xharra said that even while she was in high school she became part of every possible youth NGO, where she learned a lot, especially in terms of journalism. 

A year after becoming a student, she came in contact with a team of BBC journalists who had come to Kosovo as war reporters, and from that day forward she worked as a journalist.

While speaking about the establishment of the Investigative Reporting Network “BIRN”, Xharra told the students that with work and commitment, and without having to be part of any political group, they can achieve the pinnacle of success, while at the same time making a valuable contribution to the country.

“There are places in Kosovo where you can apply for an internship and there is no need to be part of any political party,” she said, encouraging students to look to other options while they are young and energetic.

In this lecture, Xharra also spoke about the phenomenon of the transition of journalists to politics, about whom she said that they did not enter politics to bring anything to light, but simply to find a comfortable job.

“It was very demoralizing. The reason why they made the jump to politics is solely because they wanted to find a comfortable job. To be comfortable means finding a state job that, at the end of the day, you are paid for to just sit around. If politics is a career you want, then you must aim for it from the start, and not jump to it from journalism, because that implies you are writing with an agenda, and that is very dishonest. “Although in England, for example, there are journalists who have become members of parliament, but they are known as people who have worked and pushed towards the same goals they once did as journalists, and that deserves respect.” she said.

During this lecture, Xharra also spoke about the prejudices that are made in our country for students studying in private colleges.

“The practical work must be done, no matter what. First, the person must be evaluated, to see the difference between the person who studies and the one who does not. It is wrong to assume that if you failed to enroll in a public university, you therefore automatically went to a private institution. It’s not like that! “Most of the people who work at BIRN are also from the University of Prishtina, but there are also many from AAB College,” she said.

In this lecture, which was attended by a considerable number of AAB students who come from the Municipality of Gjakova, there were many questions for journalist Jeta Xharra.