The 2020 class of Eugene S. Pulliam interns began their summer jobs in May at newspapers across the state.
The paid internship program is named in honor of the late publisher of The Indianapolis Star and The Indianapolis News and is offered through the Hoosier State Press Association Foundation. Each year, nine students are selected to participate.
In addition to the hands-on experience, HSPA provides a mentor to assist students. This year, Indiana University Professor of Practice Tom French is serving as the Pulliam mentor. French is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who worked for 30 years at the Tampa Bay Times. He is a graduate of Indiana University and was editor of his college paper, the Indiana Daily Student at IU.
“I want to be here to help however I can.”Tom French, Indiana University professor of practice & 2020 Pulliam intern mentor
“I want to be here to help however I can,” French told the interns during an introductory video chat.
French said he’ll be checking in regularly with the students and asked them to give him an update every week.
“Some days are going to go better than others and that’s OK,” French said. “That’s how it works.”
He advised the new interns to be reliable, be consistent, deliver what you promise, be accurate — be obsessive about accuracy.
The group members talked about their goals and brainstormed story ideas and coverage surrounding the coronavirus pandemic. French discussed stories that he found powerful and encouraged students to keep an eye out for good work. “If we read work that we enjoy this summer or we admire, let’s share it with each other,” French said.
This year’s interns and their destination newspapers are:
Joey Bowling, Indiana University, The Corydon Democrat; Evan Gerike, Indiana University, The Times NWI; Demi Lawrence, Ball State University, The Herald Bulletin (Anderson); Jacob Musselman, Ball State University, The News Sun (Kendallville); Samantha Nower, Ball State University, The Journal Gazette (Fort Wayne); Haley Pritchett, Franklin College, The Shelbyville News; Joseph Schroeder, Indiana University, Brown County Democrat; Lennie Stahhlak, Miami University, The Lebanon Reporter; and Phillip Steinmetz, Indiana University, The Herald-Times (Bloomington).