Every year KPA has quite a few interns pass through it, and each has their own unique experience. Through the pursuit of journalism each intern explores and grows and refines their work, gaining unquantifiable hands-on experience in a way unique to each individual. This summer, I did something that definitely fits the category of unique for a KPA intern, something I don’t think any KPA intern has done before: I was a web administrator at the KPA headquarters.
As a journalism major interning through the Kentucky Press Association, I have to say that an internship working on the back-end of a website was certainly unexpected. I started at EKU as a computer science major, and this led my advisor, Ginny Whitehouse, to recommend me for this position – and I’m extremely grateful that she did.
Over the past 10 weeks, I’ve dove headfirst into areas I’ve had little practical experience in before. I’ve learned how to efficiently manage and maintain MySQL databases, convert PDF files into comprehensive online FDF forms, expedite HTML coding through Markdown and a whole bunch of other things with tech-sounding names I’d never even heard of before. This, combined with some work I did in InDesign and Photoshop, led me to see ways to make more efficient and effective multimedia content that I’ll be taking back with me to my collegiate paper this fall.
Along the way, when I wasn’t clacking away on my keyboard or jotting down feverish notes on how to fix a major bug I’d accidentally created, I got to experience the staff at the KPA office. Each interaction I had with every member of the team felt meaningful, even over email. Any time I needed something, had a question or was discussing new assignments, I felt appreciated and like a valued member of the team.
I couldn’t imagine a better internship, and I’m thrilled to move forward with renewed excitement in coding as well as a new passion to improve the quality of my future multimedia journalism.