Hometown: Hendersonville, N.C.
Class of 2011
Internship: Savannah Morning News
Multitasking is a skill necessary to succeed as a reporter at a daily newspaper. While I worked on my own stories throughout the summer, the sheer volume of assignments the real reporters juggled on a daily basis never ceased to amaze me.
Three of my stories ran on the front page. One, a centerpiece about the West Broad Street YMCA, was a particularly rewarding piece to write. It was humbling to see poverty and to write about hope. I learned the history of the facility, one of only a handful of so-called ‘heritage Ys’ – YMCAs created by and for African Americans following World War II. Translating what I saw into print was nothing short of a wonderful experience.
Every story I worked on was fun, but one took the cake. Working on it gave me all the proof I needed that journalism is the right track for me. I was told about an under-the-radar Cuyler-Brownsville man, Lawrence Reynolds, who tried to keep neighborhood youth away from crime during the summers. As I was sitting in his house, listening to what he had to say, I couldn’t help but feel awe at his accomplishments and his tremendous personality. Telling his story was one of the neatest experiences of my life. More than a month after the story was published, I received a voicemail from Reynolds in which he told me my story ‘helped make peace in the community.’ I’m not sure what he meant, but it was nice to know something I did impacted someone in a positive way.
Working in a newsroom for a summer better prepared me for my future. I’m now a more confident writer and I’ve learned a few tricks of the trade. I’m excited to have chosen this career path and I can’t wait to get started writing for a living.