There is nothing more frustrating than have three news briefs to write and every single source is out until Monday when you have a deadline on that Friday.

Luckily, I was able to interview Kenneth Rogers for another story that is due to Dan by Friday. The interview went very well over the phone. At the end, Rogers began to tell me about the way he thinks. He made many great points. He talked about the power of positive thinking. He told me to look at the positive thinkers and the negative thinkers for the next few days. He said I would then see that the positive thinkers get things done. There was quite a bit more knowledge he shared with me, but my notes are back at the office.

I started writing that story on Thursday and will finish it on Monday.

I’m also almost done with my student and alumni profiles for the journalism Web site. It seems like it is taking forever to finish because I have been having trouble tracking down good students to profile. Earlier this week, I interviewed Kameel Stanley, a journalism student at Central that is currently doing an internship at the Washington Post. One thing that really sticks out in my mind is her determination. I think that attitude helped (and her talent for reporting, I’m sure) land that internship at the Post.

My latest project is a campus safety campaign. Dan, Sydnee and I just started on this last Wednesday. I think that I offer a good point of view for this campaign because I still am a student. I wrote the copy for a postcard that will go out to students, but we have more work to do for posters and promotion.

Overall, my internship is going well. I have noticed my writing skills improving. I also am thinking more creatively. I am working with a great people that want to help me as well. It has been exciting.

Today I was given a Central Endeavors project and a campus safety project. Since today was a short work day for me, they will keep me busy tomorrow.

I also have my own office now. I was sharing with Tracy, but she moved downstairs for her new position. I was pretty excited. Now I can put up a few pictures and not worry about leaving my papers scattered.

Writing

July 13, 2008

This past week, I’ve been working on a few more stories for Connections and the Reference Point.

I have also been finishing up some alumni and student profiles. The absolute best part of this project is speaking to alumni in my field.

For Centralight, I wrote one sentence summaries about a few books written by CMU alumni. I also finished up the Legacy Scholarship ad.

Dan and I talked about freelance writing and he has inspired me to begin pursuing it again. I started pitching stories to places last summer, but my job eventually took over my life. I am now working less hours and my biology class will soon be done, leaving me more time to work at freelance writing.

I’ve decided to make a quick lunch break update on my internship.

Yesterday I saw my ad for the CMU license plates. I was so excited when I saw it. I think I really targeted the audience of Centralight Magazine. Dan and I finished editing the copy for my Gold Membership ad for Centralight and got it to Amy.

Before I left, Dan gave me another ad to do for Centralight. It is the Alumni Legacy Scholarship ad and it has proved to be the most difficult for me to come up with a concept. I wrote the copy and came up with some ideas before getting stuck in a rut. I sent it to Dan to see what he thinks. It helps to have a fresh set of eyes look at something when I get stuck.

It is pretty exciting that I will have three full page ads in this issue of Centralight. I was just laughing yesterday about the fact that I was once planning to major in advertising. I had also considered a minor in advertising. I think that this is giving me great experience and portfolio pieces.

My article for Reference Point about the Vatican archives is finally complete. Dan gave me suggestions yesterday for reworking part of it and I think it is a pretty good story now.

I am also working on student profiles and alumni profiles for the new department of journalism Web site. I was having trouble tracking down some of the younger alumni, so I checked on Facebook. I spoke to one alumni, Khristopher Brooks, on the phone this morning. He works at the Omaha World Herald. It was really interesting to talk to him and learn about his experiences at Central.

There were a lot of great things I wish I could fit into his profile. I think one of the most important suggestions he made for students was to learn more about multimedia and how to gather information for online audiences. I also found out that he reads stories written by journalists that he aspires to be like.

I also would like to note that I have a PRSA mentor now – BJ Whitman and from Hawaii. I spoke to her on the phone once, but a six hour time difference makes regular discussions difficult.

An update

July 2, 2008

(If you read my other blog, A Step Ahead, this is the almost same post)

My internship with CMU Public Relations and Marketing has been keeping me pretty busy during the day. By the time I get home, the last thing I feel like doing is staring at the computer and writing some more. I definitely need to post more often, so I am going to shoot for posting at least once a week – most likely on Friday since that is my only day off.

Here’s the recent news

– Two of my ad concepts for Centralight Magazine are in the process of being designed by Amy.

– I’ve been writing content for the Department of Journalism and their new Web page. I am currently doing alumni and student profiles.

– The other Web site content I wrote has been sent to IT, I believe.

– I have been doing more work with CMU Welcomes You, putting in the articles, pull quotes and such.

– I  got a copy of the PBS guide containing an ad I wrote – The first hard copy of my work at PRM

– I saw a copy of Connections, a newsletter containing material I wrote about the new education building

– Today I was assigned two more items for the Reference Point.

I would describe my internship as a whirlwind of learning. I am improving my writing skills and getting real experience. It is so exciting. I really like how I get feedback and suggestions from Dan on my work. He doesn’t take an article and just edit it. He tells me what could be better and lets me do it myself. I think that is really helping me learn more.

I interviewed Frank X. Blouin, Jr. for the Reference Point at the Friends of the Library luncheon last month (Sarah was a huge help with coming up with interview questions).  There was an enormous amount of information to sort through. I had to remind myself that I was writing an story, not a report. I had used a voice recorder in the interview and during his presentation about the Vatican archives, so I was able to sort through the information to get the most vital pieces.

Yesterday I came in to finish the diversity web text and the Upward Bound article.

Since I was mostly in need of quotes, I had to wait for a few people to get back with me. I think that is the most frustrating part of the job. I’m always connected – whether it be carrying my cell phone wherever I go, or checking my e-mail more times a day than I can count.

Since I had done the adviser interview Friday, I worked on that while I waited. That interview had gone very well and I had already written part of the article.

I was also able to finish the spreadsheet project given to me by Mark. I also took the time to organize the paperwork. Once I had them numerically in order, I was able to enter data more quickly because I didn’t have to flip back if I thought I had found a duplicate.

Since I had class Monday, I went home at 3 p.m. I then finally got a hold of the girl for the Upward Bound article. I interviewed her, took notes and then put it into the article. I was slightly annoyed while interviewing because there was a lot of noise in the background and that made it more difficult to understand her.

Lesson of the Day: Over the phone interviews can be a pain. Be patient and ask the person to repeat if you think it was pertinent information.

Another day

June 6, 2008

I really hate it when I get comments that have no relation to anything on my blog. I love getting comments, but when someone posts something like “Busy time,” it gets on my nerves. What did that have to do with anything? Now if they were posting about PR or internships in any field, or even saying something directly to me, it would be cool. Enough ranting.

Thursday I worked on the excel spreadsheet that Mark sent to me. It’s really simple and kind of mindless, but it doesn’t bother me. It will give me something to do when I am waiting to hear back from people or if I get writer’s block.

I have two assignments that are high priority – the Upward Bound one and the diversity poster one. I would have come in today to work on them and get them finished, but I was planning to go to Dow Gardens with someone. She flaked out and never called me back, so I feel like a whole day was wasted, other than the fact that I got my interview done with the academic adviser that had won an award.

Thats fine though because I offered to go in on Monday (and I was sick earlier today anyway and would have had to call in if I had worked today).

Anyway, I better finish packing. I’m heading home for the weekend (where there is air conditioning – it will feel like Alaska compared to my 90-degree apartment!)

Lesson of the Day: Go to my other blog and read this post – I’m sure the guides could teach you a lesson.