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A word from the writer: How a summer season internship 27 years in the past modified my life

4 min read

I used to be fairly nervous once I first walked into the underside ground of an workplace constructing on West First Avenue 27 years in the past this month.

I used to be house for the summer season, between my junior and senior years of faculty. Dale Maharidge, my journalism adviser at Stanford College, had linked me with R.V. Scheide, an acquaintance of his from once they have been each reporters in Sacramento, to arrange a summer season internship. R.V. had been despatched to Reno about 16 months previous to take the editorial reins of the brand-new Reno Information & Overview, after the then-new house owners had taken over what had been Nevada Weekly.

I had no thought what to anticipate; I’d by no means been in a newsroom earlier than (not counting my faculty newspaper). However I definitely wasn’t anticipating the small, cluttered area the place I met R.V. (who was on the point of return to Sacramento), incoming editor Erik Espe, arts editor D. Brian Burghart, employees writers Heidi Hart and Brad Summerhill, and my fellow summer season intern, Sheryl Kleinendorst. I used to be in awe the primary time I met Dennis Myers (then an RN&R contributor, and later the longtime information editor), somebody whose studies I’d grown up watching on TV information.

My first-ever story for the RN&R—and for any newspaper aside from my faculty each day—was a preview of a brand-new arts pageant. “It’s being billed as the most important arts pageant in Reno’s historical past,” was my lede. “Reno will likely be besieged by all varieties of artists for ‘Uptown, Downtown, Artown,’ Reno’s summer season arts pageant.” At the moment, in fact, that pageant is solely often known as Artown.

That summer season, I skilled sides of Reno I’d by no means seen earlier than. Sheryl and I usually zipped round city in her pickup, doing Streetalk and serving to one another out with our tales. She was the one who launched me to sushi, on the now-long-gone Sushi Membership. Brian launched me to Golden Flower, and later Bangkok Delicacies (which opened that yr)—the primary instances I ever ate Vietnamese and Thai meals, respectively.

That summer season was exhausting—I used to be working different jobs along with the unpaid RN&R internship, as a result of I wanted to avoid wasting for faculty—however I used to be additionally having the time of my life.

That internship wound up paving a profession path I had no thought I’d take. My aim had at all times been to work within the sports activities division at a big metro each day. My first journalism job after faculty was as a newsman in The Related Press’ San Francisco bureau, and I used to be effectively on my manner towards that aim. I used to be initially employed by the AP for what amounted to a 20-week tryout, and I did effectively sufficient to be provided a everlasting place, however I declined it, as a result of I felt the necessity to return to Reno for private causes.

My second journalism job after faculty? As a brief employees author on the RN&R. I crammed a two-month hole between one author leaving, and one other author beginning. I then went to the Each day Sparks Tribune for a yr and a half earlier than returning to the RN&R as information editor. After lower than six months, in January 2000, I used to be named the editor of the RN&R—a job I most likely wasn’t fairly prepared for—a month shy of my twenty fifth birthday.

In October 2001, I left the RN&R for good (or so I believed)—however I didn’t go away different papers. I went to Las Vegas CityLife (one of many nation’s most underrated different weeklies, one which died manner sooner than it ought to’ve, because of company neglect) earlier than transferring on to the Tucson Weekly for a decade. In 2013, my now-husband and I moved to Palm Springs to start out the Coachella Valley Impartial. After stepping in to assist revive the RN&R a yr and a half in the past, we’re now splitting time between Palm Springs and Reno.

Subsequent month, I plan to attend the Affiliation of Different Newsmedia’s annual convention in Dallas. I’ve been on the AAN board for practically a decade (in two totally different stints), and on the convention, I’m more likely to be voted in as AAN’s board president.

None of this might have occurred if my faculty adviser hadn’t helped me get a summer season internship at my fledgling hometown different weekly 27 years in the past. The universe really works in hilariously mysterious methods.

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