Ten weeks seemed like a long time when I began my KPA internship in mid-May, but now that my time as John Overby—Intern is almost up, it seems that the 10 weeks has flown by.
The stories that I did earlier this summer—from Rosa Garrison’s 100th birthday party to James Renfro’s Million Mile Award—still seem like articles that I just yesterday handed in to be proofed.
Regardless of how short my 10 weeks at the Adair County Community Voice seemed, it was long enough to provide a glimpse into what being a journalist means and what my future holds.
After my time here, I believe that journalism is about overcoming that certain sense of anxiety you get every time you cover an event you’ve never covered before or meet and interview someone for the first time.
It’s that attention to detail of knowing to use child rather than kid because, as Sharon (the Voice’s editor) pointed out, a kid is a billy goat.
It’s pushing a deserving citizen to the forefront of the community’s conversation for some under-the-radar feat they accomplished, or on the other end of the spectrum, exposing a harsh truth that someone is unjustly trying to hide or keep hidden.
It most certainly is NOT about making friends, becoming famous, making lots of money or taking it easy on the job, although a surprising amount of people seem to believe this job is about all four.
Most of all, though, journalism—especially in a small community like ours—is about getting out and knowing the community. If you don’t know the people that you’re covering, then how can you cater to their needs and wants?
I realize it is impossible to learn every lesson that a journalist must know in a 10-week period; I can’t imagine that to be the case in any profession. However, this internship was an invaluable step in the process.