Promising interns paired with Indiana newspapers

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By Karen T. Braeckel
HSPA Foundation

Meet this year’s Tenacious Ten – our 2013 class of Eugene S. Pulliam interns named after the late publisher of The Indianapolis Star and The Indianapolis News.

The selection committee (announced in the last Publisher) pored over applications for five hours and then debated for 40 minutes. In the end they chose another outstanding group of students.

As Bob Hansen, editor of the Connersville News-Examiner, said in an email afterward, “There are some very talented young people out there; very encouraging.”

I enjoy this time of year. We make 10 bright journalism students happy while offering them incredible experiences.

We cause dancing in newsrooms when we say, “We have an intern for you.” (One asked, “This is not a joke, right?”)

But with the cool comes the tough. A few students ask where they fell short as one called it, or what they could do to improve.

I review their applications and give the best advice I can. Sometimes they need to vary their clips. Sometimes they lack experience. (And, yes, sometimes they begin their personal statements with “My name is … .“)

The 2013 applicants came from 15 Indiana colleges and universities. (Students must attend a college in the state or be an Indiana resident.)

The interns hail from four universities: five from IU-Bloomington, three from University of Southern Indiana (a record for the school), one from Goshen College and one from Indiana State.

In the fall, seven interns will begin their senior years, two will start as juniors, and one rising sophomore made the list.

For those interested in such things, males hold the majority in this class – six to four.

Why do I mention such a sexist thing? It’s a first! Females either outnumbered or equaled the guys in every other class since the program’s inception in 2001.

Four students come from the Indianapolis metro area, two live about an hour outside of Indy, two are from Illinois, and two reside near the state’s northern border.

Of the 10 students, eight major in journalism, one majors in communication, and one has a double major in English/writing and journalism. (Do English and journalism teachers still battle over starting a sentence with “and”?)

Along with journalism these interns study a variety of other subjects. Check out these minors: political science (3 students); business and kinesiology (a sports writer); criminal justice; Spanish (a photographer); creative writing (English); and criminology. One has triple minors in public affairs, sociology and Spanish.

Two currently study abroad – one in South Korea and one in Peru.

Before leaving for Seoul, where she studies Korean language and culture, Caitlin O’Hara served as photo editor at the Indiana Daily Student at IU. She keeps a weekly travel column in the form of a photo story.

Kate Stoltzfus studies conversational Spanish in Lima and writes weekly columns for The Elkhart Truth.

Nathan Brown, the sports writer in the group, interned at the Olympic Games in London, participated as a freelancer at Super Bowl XLVI Media Day, served an internship in media relations with the Indiana Ice and currently covers IU’s men’s basketball for the IDS.

Dustyn Fatheree served as a reporter, staff editor and assistant news editor of the Indiana Statesman at Indiana State.

Matthew Glowicki currently serves as managing editor of the IDS at IU. He had internships at a weekly Chicago suburban newspaper and a magazine in London.

Evansville Courier & Press currently hosts Shannon Hall as a metro intern. She serves as Life & Culture editor at the University of Southern Indiana’s Shield and was chief copy editor the previous year.

Jessie Hellman, current news editor at The Shield, also presides over the reinstated SPJ student chapter at USI.

Daniel Morgan, a former editor in chief of North Central (Indianapolis) High School’s newspaper, now freelances for The Herald-Times (Bloomington).

As a freshman, Matthew Stefanski became general assignments editor at the IDS while also covering everyone’s favorite beat – business and economics.

And finally (only because of his “V” name), James Vaughn covers breaking news, writes in-depth features, and compiles stories for sports and life and culture for USI’s Shield. He also helped with the reinstatement of the SPJ chapter as its vice president.

Add passion and tenacity to the talent Hansen noted when describing this fine group of young journalists.

Karen Braeckel is director of the HSPA Foundation. Her column runs in the second issue of each month.