Seth Graham

Seth GrahamEastern Kentucky University

Grant County News

In order to explain my experience here at the Grant County News I have to go back to when I first learned that I had got the internship. I was a sophomore at Eastern Kentucky majoring in broadcasting. The only experience writing I ever had was covering tennis for the sports section of the Eastern Progress and I was just taking it one step at a time learning the trade of a sports reporter.

In one of my classes my professor mentioned that one could get an internship for a newspaper through KPA and I looked into it and thought about it until the last minute. I was able to get in a resume, which I threw together last second, right before the deadline. I remember I was in class when my phone started ringing, embarrassed I frantically silenced it as heads were starting to turn back to look at me. After class I checked the voicemail that was left and it was Jamie Baker-Nantz of the Grant County News offering me an internship. Feeling on top of the world I gathered all the friends I could for celebratory lunch that day.

Summer came faster than expected and I started my internship. I saw a newspaper that was way understaffed even for a small county, but that was good news for me because that meant I was probably going to be able to experience every part of the newspaper process not just a certain aspect. I remember my first assignment was to go out and get pictures of a long time teacher that was retiring. When I arrived I saw talked with a couple people and was able to get a couple good pictures. Little did I know how many more pictures that I was going to have to take and how much I would enjoy it.

I have done everything from interviewing teachers, students, coaches, a best-selling author, and a family band to pictures inside bouncy houses, of a water slide, of exotic animals, and of a cooking class to designing and laying out pages. But the most I will take away is the experiences that I am taking away from each of these things.

For example when interviewing the teacher, I thought that I was able to understand and relate well to her as both of my parents are teachers and when interviewing the archery coach I was able learn about archery and how competitions work and witness the start of a program that is already one of the best in the state. And behind the pictures I was able experience of holding a snake/ learn about wild life with the kids and when taking pictures of the cooking class I was able to meet all the great kids and ladies involved with the class.

But where I think I fell most in love with the internship is one day when I was went from taking pictures at one place to another place and when I arrived I had some time to spare so I went ahead and did a phone interview for one of my stories. After I got off the phone, I realized how much fun I was having by going to these events and taking pictures then in between all of that, being able to call up someone with a noteworthy story behind them. That feeling did not just come once either.

Through all of the fun I was having I couldn’t help but learn a lot of things. Out in the field when shooting photography I learned that you really cannot really get a good picture by watching from the sides. That at times you have to be a little assertive to get a good picture. That if the picture is not that good then to move closer or try a different perspective. I would say that taking pictures is the most fun I had over everything, but my dreams of being a sports reporter is still my ultimate goal.

On the reporting side I would say I am a work in progress. I was able to write a lot of stories and gain a lot of experience but I am still learning about contacting people for interviews (When I was trying to do a feature story about this family band I contacted them five times and they answered every time but when I asked “When would we be able to meet up so you can show me where you make your music?” they would respond with “I am going to have to get with my family and see when would be best. I will call you back.” I would never a call back.) and the writing process. For example one of my stories was about a man who was in a national competition and I wrote away on it and I wrote the story more about the competition and the man in the area was competing in it when the better story was more about the local man who was competing in a National Competition.

This internship experience gave me opportunities and learning experiences that would not be possible to gain at school. I think that this internship at the Grant County News was the right fit for me because of all of these great opportunities. Hopefully I am able to stay in contact with them after this internship and well into the future.

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