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  • socdeansintern 1:29 pm on November 13, 2017 Permalink  

    Putting My Classroom Skills to Work at VOA 

    By Dean’s Intern Emma Sarrantonio at Voice of America

    There are so many great aspects to working at Voice of America that it’s hard to talk about a single experience. But if I had to pick one that really makes me glad to come in to work everyday, it’s getting to meet so many different people with their own unique craft. The majority of VOA’s workers are freelance artists which gives me the opportunity to meet and learn about each individual’s unique way of solving the same problem. Besides the freelancers I’ve also gotten to meet and become great friends with, I’ve met other workers in the many different departments here at VOA like the African News Division, Motion Graphics team and audio tech department.

    Even though I spend most of my days either running around the building or fretting over the small details of this project. I enjoy it so much more than being in a classroom. It’s hard to describe the exultation you feel when you do a good job on an assignment but it’s without a doubt different than wrapping up class projects. What I’m most proud of so far about working for VOA is that I was able to see the skills I gain from school actually matter in the workforce. I’m constantly helping out with technical difficulties within Premiere and I even got to do some of the motion graphic in our documentary. It is an amazing feeling, knowing that my motion graphics skills and name will be featured at film festivals all over the world.

  • socdeansintern 4:14 pm on October 20, 2017 Permalink  

    Learning and Laughing at NBC4 

    By Dean’s Intern Ambar Pardilla at NBC4

    From a cake countdown clock (a whiteboard that hangs on the wall near our desks, complete with the number of days since we’ve had cake and illustrations of candles and confetti) to eating pizza after participating in a promotional shoot for the station to scheduling the day’s stories at morning meetings, I’ve been fortunate enough to be surrounded by people who love what they do and are eager to educate me throughout my internship at NBC4. Although the news can sometimes be distressing or disheartening, my co-workers always find ways to stay sane and make me laugh.

    Sitting at different desks on the two days a week that I’m at my internship has allowed me to get to know my co-workers, with all of them giving me advice for reporting and researching that I’ll take with me beyond NBC4. Sometimes they’ll assign stories for me to write from a reporter’s segment on the 4, 5 or 6 p.m. shows or press releases. I’ve mastered how to cut and caption videos for NBC4’s website, which highlight some of special segments from the station’s shows. I write a story almost everyday that I’m at the internship and editing those stories with the other members of the digital team has been really practical and productive for my own reporting. I’ve written about how D.C. residents have struggled to reach relatives in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria, Hillary Clinton’s national book tour starting in D.C. and added to another story about adult things to do in D.C. for Halloween—listing more events and editing the article to include 31 things to do, for the 31 days of October (to make it extra “spooky” I told one of my co-workers).

    After talking to one of my supervisors, I’m hoping to expand on some of the stories I’ve worked on in my communication classes and publish them on NBC4’s website, connecting what I’ve learned in class to what I’m doing at my internship. Even though I’m only at NBC4 twice a week, I’ve learned (and laughed!) so much and can’t wait to discover and challenge myself more.

  • socdeansintern 10:46 am on October 11, 2017 Permalink  

    Working Hard for The Newseum’s “First Five” 

    By Dean’s Intern Taylor Moore at the Newseum

    I got incredibly lucky with my position at the Newseum. Lata Nott is a brilliant lawyer who currently serves as the Executive Director for the Newseum’s First Amendment Center. After hearing her speak to my graduate program, I was immediately drawn to the work of the program and wanted to get involved.

    I was assigned to be the media assistant for the center, with my work focusing on production for and research for the podcast, “The First Five.” I recently wrapped up my first big assignment working on an episode covering the current state of the media in Turkey. The president of Turkey is very anti-journalism and we hosted two media experts to cover issues surrounding the more than 150 journalists being held in the country and the 2,500 that have lost their job.

    I was given a lot more authority over the episode than I anticipated and it was an incredible experience. I got to edit and rearrange the original interview as well as research for potential additional audio clips that could be added. I was also responsible for writing the show notes for the episode that would come before the podcast on the website.

    My next assignment is the pre-production for an interview with Politico’s editor, Carrie Budoff Brown and to script some ideas for a “stand alone” episode of Lata discussing current events/issues. This experience has been amazing so far and I can’t wait to see what else is to come.

  • socdeansintern 4:32 pm on October 10, 2017 Permalink  

    Pitching My Own Stories at WUSA9—and Meeting Some Dogs in the Process 

    By Dean’s Intern Chelsea Cirruzzo at WUSA9

    I can’t think of a more ideal Sunday afternoon than one spent surrounded by Corgis. Yes, lovable, fluffy Corgis. This was considered interning? At WUSA9, yes!

    My internship at WUSA9 has been nothing but encouraging of my interests. In the first week, my supervisor told me that I was free to pitch and report my own stories. She showed me how to track trends online using various social tools and told me that if I wanted to write something, all I had to do was ask. I start my mornings at WUSA9 in a pitch meeting where I listen to other writers, social media editors, and reporters discuss the top headlines and trending stories. In those meetings, I’ve been able to speak up and talk about stories I’ve seen trending; as a lover of Facebook events, I got excited when I noticed that there was a Corgi festival event page being circulated. It was taking place that coming weekend at beer garden. As I’d recently become interested in writing about D.C. lifestyle and events, I did a short and fun write-up on the event and posted it to WUSA9’s Facebook and Twitter page.

    The next day, I was surprised when the article was trending on WUSA9’s social pages. One of the digital producers suggested, if the article was so popular, why don’t I go to the event and take pictures? Spend an entire day taking pictures of Corgis? Yes! I got to spend a whole day petting dogs, watching them race, and sitting in on a dog costume contest. Adorable and fun.

    I’m lucky to intern for an organization that fosters my creativity and allows me to take stories and news into my own hands. I can’t wait to see what I get to do next.

  • socdeansintern 4:25 pm on October 10, 2017 Permalink  

    By Dean’s Intern Meredith Bartley at Voice of… 

    By Dean’s Intern Meredith Bartley at Voice of America

    At my Dean’s Internship in the documentary and special programming department at VOA, I have been working on a documentary about the terrorist group Boko Haram, produced by senior executive producer Beth Mendelson. I came on during post-production, but I feel as though I’ve seen many different aspects of the filmmaking process. It has been a crazy experience – everything that could possibly go wrong has! But it’s also a masterclass in producing. Beth has juggled half a million things, from contracts to technology to workplace politics to festival submissions. I love following in her footsteps – literally – as we trek across the halls to check on different departments. I like to joke that it’s a bit like “The Devil Wears Prada,” except we’re making a movie, not a magazine!

    One of the coolest things I’ve gotten to do is personally submit a rough cut of the film to the Sundance Film Festival. Next up on my list are Tribeca, Full Frame, South by Southwest, and more. It’s a whole new experience to navigate the festival circuit and handle deadlines, file types, and other requirements. And, of course, we’re still just trying to finish up the film! It has been wonderful be part of such a professional production.

  • socdeansintern 4:23 pm on October 10, 2017 Permalink  

    By Dean’s Intern Emily Simonsen at CQ Roll… 

    By Dean’s Intern Emily Simonsen at CQ Roll Call

    CQ’s Product Innovation Internship is a unique communications experience. In this role, students create, strategize, and implement new consultative services relating to Congress and advocacy.

    My work includes self-directed research, like analyzing markets, competitors and potential clients. One such project entailed investigating point-of-contact individuals for a multiagency product. Another, similar assignment used research to brief my boss on market players.

    The position’s also tapped my creative side. I explored and drafted name suggestions for an upcoming research service. One of the names I proposed was selected to represent this potential offering.

    Beyond these duties, I’ve created collateral for the product innovation process (such as infographics), evaluated research data to decipher trends and presented conclusions through power point presentations.

    Additionally, I attend multi-department gatherings and sit-in on potential client meetings to gain insight on the innovation process.

    My proudest accomplishment to date is my research methodology project. Through this assignment, I created a structure for others to follow when conducting market research. This framework allows the Innovation team to pinpoint and streamline our research.

    CQ has empowered my professional and personal growth by teaching me the value of hard work, time management, and prioritization through allowing me to undertake and accomplish various tasks.

    As CQ continues to align with the Dean’s Internship Program, I have no doubt students will benefit from the varied experience.

  • socdeansintern 12:25 pm on October 10, 2017 Permalink  

    Tackling Long-Term Stories at NPR 

    By Dean’s Intern Haley Samsel at NPR

    Growing up as the daughter of a high school chemistry teacher, I never imagined I would end up reporting on education — and especially not at NPR, which has already gone above and beyond my expectations.

    The education team thinks of its interns as full-time reporters, and assigns stories that challenge you to do more research, make more calls and talk to as many people as possible. During my first month here, I worked exclusively on a long, thoroughly reported article on the state of standardized testing policy in the U.S. two years after the opt out movement hit its peak. It’s kind of incredible that my editors would trust me to tackle this massive topic in my first story. That tells you a lot about what it’s like to work here.

    There’s other perks to working at NPR, like the free bookshelf (couldn’t resist taking a picture in front of it), free coffee from the cafe downstairs, and the other amazing interns I get to work with. I’m so thankful to be given the opportunity to learn from the best and strengthen my reporting skills as I dig deeper into the same topics I grew up discussing with my mom, a public school teacher in Texas. She is my inspiration to keep pursuing my goals — which, after working at NPR, might lie in education reporting.

  • socdeansintern 10:24 am on October 10, 2017 Permalink  

    Hitting the Ground Running at NBC4 

    By Dean’s Intern Lauren Lumpkin at NBC4

    I hit the ground running at my internship with NBC4 Washington this semester. By my second day in the newsroom, I was already writing my own stories.

    NBC, of course, is a really large company. The local station located across the street from campus on Nebraska Ave, NW is split into TV studios, the broadcast team and my home – the digital team.

    My favorite thing I’ve written was an article about Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ decision to rescind Obama-era guidelines for investigating campus sexual assaults. I did a lot of my own original reporting by reaching out to eight local schools and asking them if they would keep the Obama standards or adopt new ones. I also interviewed students, sexual assault survivors and a Washington, D.C.-based organization that provides free legal consultation to survivors. My editor liked the article so much that she pitched it to NBC national so that other local stations, like NBC Philadelphia and NBC Los Angeles, can do the same thing with colleges in their areas.

    However, my day-to-day work isn’t always as glamorous. Much of it is cutting videos, scanning the wires for news and writing stories based on press releases. But I love when I’m able to pitch my own ideas and do my own reporting.

    I’m currently working a series about money and millennials that will hopefully get off the ground soon!

  • socdeansintern 2:59 pm on October 6, 2017 Permalink  

    Learning the Building Blocks at Discovery 

    By Dean’s Intern Brianna Hall at Discovery Communications

    Being the rotational intern at Discovery Communications is truly something special. Moving from the Consumer Insights and Culture Lab to Accounts Management has shown me two fundamental building blocks of how the company operates. The Accounts team manages communication between the clients (meaning the different networks such as Discovery Channel, TLC, and Animal Planet) and our world-class design team. A single day can consist of approving key art for Discovery’s hit show Gold Rush, assigning tasks for Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl, and meeting with the TLC team to make sure all social media posts are impeccable. This is detail oriented work that requires strong organizational and interpersonal skills. I personally have started managing some Download to Own Graphics (DLTO’s). These are the graphics you see whenever you download a show off of Amazon, iTunes, etc. We need new DLTO’s for every season of a show, so requests are constantly coming in and I’m learning how to delegate tasks to designers, communicate feedback from clients, and send out finished products through the many steps of approval. Working in an agency setting is exciting, busy, and vibrating with creativity, and I’m loving every moment of it.

  • socdeansintern 3:34 pm on September 22, 2017 Permalink  

    Creating “Creating Camelot” at the Newseum 

    By Dean’s Intern Gavin Grossman at the Newseum

    My first few weeks at the Newseum have been really interesting.  The job is a lot of writing, which is a good challenge for me.  I’ve been asked to explain complicated topics like Wikileaks in just 250 characters, but also have been asked to describe an image I know nothing about in over a page of detail.  While I have done some writing assignments, editing the ADA script for the upcoming “Creating Camelot” exhibit was one of my favorite tasks.  “Creating Camelot” is coming to the Newseum this spring, and it is all about JFK’s early years as a President and Senator.  It revolves around the photography of Jacques Lowe, the family photographer for the Kennedy’s during their Senate years and JFK’s first campaign.  Not only was it a really cool experience to be contributing to the Newseum in such a big way, but also it was the perfect task that combined my Communication and History disciplines I’ve been focused on here at AU.  Outside of just the work, the experience has been made great also by my co-workers.  I don’t feel like an intern because everyone at the office is super forward and willing to hear my ideas and give them as much weight as anyone.  I’m excited to go to work every day, and I can not wait to see what is next for me in the upcoming weeks at the Newseum.

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