By Molly Cooper
Jack Janowicz is a confident, talented, outgoing new professional. With a background in performing arts, Janowicz is no stranger to executing a near-perfect performance live under pressure. He used this skill to his advantage when he decided to make the career change to stenographer. Janowicz moved quickly through school at South Coast College in Orange, Calif., and passed the California Certified Shorthand Reporter (CSR) exam during the pandemic of 2020. Getting stage ready now involves setting up his machine, making sure all devices are connected, and logging in virtually to a deposition. He has even invited the world behind the scenes via his social media.
JCR | How did you feel both going in to your first assignment as a reporter and coming out of it?
JJ | Going in to my first assignment as a brand-new reporter, I was so excited. I knew that I had done the work to qualify me to take that first job. It ended up being a perfect first job, and I came out of it feeling like a pro. If I only knew then to appreciate that not every day would be like this!
JCR | What is your current goal? What is a long-term goal?
JJ | My current goal is building my dictionary all the way up until I’m ready to start realtime. My strategy to get there as quickly as possible is to take all kinds of jobs, and I have: Doctors, experts, personal injury, business, technical, and more. In my first six months of reporting, I’m proud to say I truly can’t think of one type of job that I haven’t done except for an arbitration. That’s next on my list.
JCR | Do you have a mentor?
JJ | My mentor is Cody Knacke, RPR, CRC, a freelance court reporter and captioner from Ontario, Calif. Without him, I can’t imagine how I would’ve made the transition from student to professional. From auto-indexing to learning the software and its capabilities, he has taught me everything I know as far as how to actually build a transcript and make it pristine and ready to turn in. I think it is so important to find someone who can hold your hand in the beginning and show you everything that court reporting school didn’t show you, which is a lot. I can’t wait to return the favor and mentor somebody one day when I’m the pro.
JCR | What do you enjoy most about deposition reporting?
JJ | My favorite things about deposition reporting are the flexibility and never knowing what you’re going to get. Since I also spend time making magic at Disneyland, I love being able to control my schedule so I can do both jobs and still find some time for having fun. I also love that every day is different with depositions. Nothing will beat the independence and the spontaneity of being a deposition reporter.
JCR | What inspired you to make TikTok videos about court reporting, and how can people find them?
JJ | I saw a TikTok about court reporting, and it blew up with millions of views. I figured I could do that. A lot of times when we tell people, “I’m a court reporter,” we get, “Oh, what’s that?” I find showing what we do is a lot easier than explaining what we do. TikTok was the perfect avenue for that. So I started making some introductory videos to the world of court reporting and stenography, and people seem to love it. I’ve had reporters from all over the country reach out to me because they’ve seen my videos, and I’ve also had a tremendous amount of people contact me because they’re interested in signing up for court reporting school. Look out, world. We may have a lot of new reporters coming soon. My handle is @jackofalltradez. Follow me, and let’s get connected!
Molly Cooper, RPR, is a freelance court reporter in Fullerton, Calif.