The News School Experience as a Journalism Intern

Courtesy of The News School

The News School Journalism

The News School (TNS) is a civic journalism program based in the local community of West Chicago — North Lawndale. TNS focuses on all forms of journalism, from, news reporting, social media and marketing, broadcasting, magazine and newspaper design, and photojournalism.

TNS’s main focus for the program is addressing issues, especially three important issues within North Lawndale and Chicago communities. These important issues are literacy among Chicago residents, youth leadership and empowerment, and civic engagement. It is located at St. Agatha’s Catholic Church, where interns from all departments come together.

I started working here starting in the middle of September of this year. As my first job, this was definitely a change of pace from my usual high school life. I spend my time here writing newspaper articles about important recent and local news.

My experience working here has been such a positive and valuable experience with so many opportunities for learning. From my time here, TNS has really shined in many important ways. Including, active civic engagement within the local community, and the inclusion of and overall great working environment for all employees.

Civic Engagement

Courtesy of The News School

The News School takes civic engagement very seriously for all workers. For article journalism, I and my coworkers write articles based on the local community. We take recent news that is crucial for people to know and Within other departments, One main goal is to be able to give back and help the community, especially the youth within Chicago.

One event that we held while I’ve been working here is a Youth Forum for upcoming elections. This was a community-based forum for the west side of Chicago. There was a wide range of guest speakers at the forum, like Aldermen and Alderwomen, all talking about important issues within the community like mental health, food deserts, housing, education, entrepreneurship, and economics. This was an informational event for all that came to view it, extending from youth to the elderly.

Inclusion Within Journalism

When I first came into the building on my first day working, I was so surprised to see so many people my age. Most workers here are teenagers, from those still in high school to new college students. Not many places offer an opportunity like this for teenagers and tend to reserve internships like this for people with more experience.

However, it’s not easy for many youth in Chicago to have access to meaningful work to gain that experience. That’s exactly why this program provides a meaningful experience. This truly is a youth-based program both employs and helps youth within Chicago. TNS takes in youth and young adults who may come from rough life situations and environments, and guide them into becoming successful in journalism.

Work environment

Overall the environment is a great place to be in. I have been able to get along with my coworkers in a work environment and outside of work, creating great friendships.  Recently we just had a group Thanksgiving meal. We all took a break from working to come together and sit with each other to eat a Thanksgiving Meal created by our own interns.

We are able to laugh and have fun together but still buckle down and get our work done. DiMarkco Chandler, the Co-Founder, Director, and CEO of TNS, also gives us many important informative talks and discussions about key topics. He teaches us critical thinking skills which are fundamental for knowing what is true or false and for our writing.

Written By Alyssa Calderon

Images Courtesy of The News School

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