Steno Survival Kit

The subject came up recently about essentials to bring along on internship assignments and/or your first few court reporting jobs, so I've decided to compose a list of things to put in your steno survival kit. Preparation is everything. It really is the little things that count, and you never know what a lawyer or potential employer might remember when scheduling the next deposition or filling a vacancy in a firm. These are my suggestions.

  • A spill-proof bottle of water (I can't stress the spill-proof part enough. A few assignments ago, I accidentally spilled water all over the witness stand on a short recess in court and was frantically wiping up the last few drops when the Judge came back into the courtroom. Talk about mortifying!)
  • An energy bar or bag of almonds, etc., in case you're expected to work through lunch
  • Your steno machine, obvi, cords and charger
  • Laptop if you choose to do RT
  • Extension cord
  • Extra paper, both steno and of the notepad variety
  • A reliable tape or digital recorder, which comes in handy when proofing internship assignments
  • Pens, at least two colors (helps in marking exhibits) and a permanent marker
  • Extra batteries, AA or AAA
  • Mini-stapler/stapler remover combo & paperclips
  • Exhibit stickers, labels, envelopes, invisible tape, etc., for marking exhibits
  • Reporter worksheet such as this one courtesy of Kramm Reporting or your internship worksheet