I probably proofread that first email about 10 times just to make sure it was perfect. The email was to the sports editor of the Tacoma Weekly, Justin Gimse, about the opportunity to potentially intern at the Tacoma Weekly for the summer. I had never heard of the Weekly having interns and fully considered this a complete shot in the dark at trying to gain some experience in the field I hope to one day work in, but about a week later I received an answer: I was offered an internship!
The first story I was assigned to cover was the Rainier Dragon Boat Festival at the Foss Waterway. Going in I remember being both incredibly excited and anxious to be covering my first story. On the morning of the races, I made my way down to the waterfront and proudly put on my press badge for the first time, pulled out my notebook and got to work. With it being my first story, I see it as one of my favorites. Getting to walk around and talk to competitors and spectators while watching an incredible and historical event was a great way to kick off a summer of writing.
Another one of my favorite stories I covered this summer was on the Tacoma Lawn Bowling Club at Wright Park. For this story, I met with club president, Kane Tobin, and even got to play a couple games of lawn bowling. What made this story so fun to be a part of, and one of my favorites, was the people. On the day of the story, I arrived early and talked with Tobin about the club and its new philosophy and environment. Tobin was so welcoming and I could easily see how deeply he believed in the club and how passionate he was about creating a place of inclusivity through the sport. Throughout the day I met other members of the club who were equally as inviting and eager to share their sport. Getting to work with people who were so excited about their sport and saw the platform athletics can provide to create a community made me eager to share their story.
Part of what drew me to pursue a career in journalism is the chance to share people’s stories, which made some of my other favorite articles the ones that focused on people. This summer I got to write about three high school boys basketball coaches leaving as well as three new boys basketball coaches in Tacoma schools. It was an incredible opportunity to reflect with the exiting coaches on their careers and impact and to hear how eager the new coaches were to get started. What stood out to me most from both these stories was hearing how much all the coaches cared about their players. In each interview, each coach shared how greatly they value the relationship and chance to help coach student athletes on and off the court.
Another story with a focus on people which I enjoyed writing was on Andrew Fowler, who competed in this year’s Special Olympics USA Games. I met Andrew at a meet-and-greet event hosted by Comcast where the support and admiration for Fowler was clear. Speaking with Andrew, I got to learn more about who he is as an athlete on the track and off. Getting to know more about him and to see how ready he was to compete made it such a fun story to work on.
As I prepare to head back to school I feel so grateful for the opportunity to have written for the Tacoma Weekly. From getting over all sorts of nerves to honing my writing skills to getting the chance to meet so many incredible people. both on stories and at the office, I can say with certainty that it has been a truly incredible summer with the Tacoma Weekly.