A Free Press Matters

By Dean’s Intern Grace George at Voice of America

Grace GeorgeThe slogan at Voice of America is “A Free Press Matters.” My time as a VOA intern showed me the meaning of this phrase, and the organization’s commitment to it.

As an intern in the documentary unit at VOA I conduct research for a project on press freedom in Turkey, a country where holding the government accountable can land you prison time. I help my supervisors learn more about the history of press freedom in Turkey, I pull video from AP, AFP, and Reuters for the project, and I help with research for future projects. Not only has this opportunity allowed me to witness the work of seasoned journalists while sharpening my own skills, but it has also furthered my passion and understanding for the importance of a free press.

This internship has widened my range of interests and introduced me to a new medium. Working with documentary is an amazing challenge that every journalism student should experience. It requires a strength of knowledge on your topic and the perseverance to find any and every way to work out your story.

With only a few weeks left at VOA, I’m going to miss witnessing the inner workings of a successful and committed news organization every time I step into this building. Its halls are plastered with the organization’s rich history and swimming with over 40 languages. Just walking through them can make anyone want to be a part of the work they do here.