Great journalists are made in newsrooms like this one: Reflections on my summer internship

1002492_10201853085271470_1051905855_n“Anything the interns would like to say?”

THANK YOU.

This summer, for 12 weeks, I interned with the breaking news desk at the South Florida Sun Sentinel. When we arrived, we were greeted by celebration: the paper had just won a Pulitzer Price for Public Service Reporting. Read more about that here. 

From the get-go, we knew we were in a special place, surrounded by talented people. The more we got to know the reporters and editors, the more I realized how fortunate I was to be there.

While working on the breaking news desk, there was no shortage of news. I was constantly pitching and writing, and I had to do so quickly. I had many early mornings at first-appearance court, and many trips to scenes and events. The breaking news desk also gave me the opportunity to contribute to big stories, such as the South Florida reaction to the Zimmerman verdict.

In doing all of this, the internship felt more like a job than an internship. I was allowed to work just like any other reporter in the newsroom, to the point that people in other departments thought I was a new hire. When my friends would ask me if I was getting published, I would laugh a little inside and tell them, “front page of the local section on day one.”

My first byline in a professional publication.

My first byline in a professional publication.

Another great part is that they allowed me to go beyond writing, and writing about breaking news. Beat reporters gave me the opportunity to take on stories from their beats— I covered a couple federal cases when the reporter went away on vacation— which allowed me to expand on my reporting experience. In terms of mediums, I was repeatedly given the opportunity to shoot photos and videos to accompany my stories, and got feedback on my photography (and equipment!) from some of the best photography editors I’ll ever know.

Regardless of where I end, this opportunity was incredibly valuable to me as a journalist. Telling stories is a craft, writing is an art, and thanks to everyone at the Sun Sentinel, today I am better at both.

I am also certain that great journalists are made in newsrooms like this one.

Here are some (just some!) of the talented people that made my summer unforgettable, listed in no particular order. Thanks everyone!

Debbie, Tonya, Dana, Howard, Doug, Linda, Juan, Nolin, Rolando, George, Paula, Melvin, Brittany, Wayne, Gio, Erika, and many many more. (This list in no way reflects their endorsement of my work, character or work ethic.) 

Let me also mention the amazing group of interns I got to work with.

Now, onto new adventures.

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