Here are the CNS reporters for Spring 2013:
Paige Baxter: “Hailing from only an hour and a half away in Norfolk, I’m a senior print journalism major with a minor in Spanish. I enjoy writing but I also like to take pictures to go along with my work or just for fun. Another interest of mine is design. Although I don’t have a lot of experience, design is an area I would like to learn more in. In the past, I have worked as an editorial intern for Richmond Magazine. I also have written and worked for the VCU online music publication The Horn RVA. Currently I am the editor for the online food publication, Shafer Bird which covers VCU and Richmond dining. Though I have written a lot about food for both Shafer Bird and Richmond Magazine, I am working on expanding my writing to other beats. Regardless of the beat you’re writing for, there’s always a good story out there. I’m excited to be a part of CNS and to help inform the greater of Richmond and beyond about what’s going on in our state.” You can email Paige at email@example.com.
Blake Belden: “I was born in Lynchburg, and after living there for 18 years, I escaped to come to VCU. I’m a senior print journalism major and I plan to graduate in May 2013. My experience in the field, unfortunately, doesn’t reach much further than the work I’ve produced for my classes leading up to this semester. However, I believe I have developed a strong and eclectic sense of story ideas and composition because of the program. I’m interested to begin CNS because the subjects of politics and state legislature are something I’ve only really scratched the surface of, so it will be a tremendous expansion on my catalog of beat fortes and personal contacts. There is a quote I like from Jimi Hendrix that goes ‘Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens.’ It’s simple, but I think it works. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Jessica Dahlberg: ”I’m a senior, and I have lived all along the East Coast. After moving several times, I now live in Fredericksburg. I am a print journalism major with a minor in political science. However, I want to be versatile and become a multimedia journalist. I have a basic understanding of photography, design and video. I have worked as a public affairs specialist in the Army, and I was deployed to Afghanistan in 2008 as a photojournalist. I have written for the Commonwealth Times, and I have done an internship with the Podium Online Foundation. For me, journalism is really about the public and for the public. That is why I chose to take CNS this semester. What happens in the government effects everyone directly, and people should know what decisions officials are making on their behalf. My favorite quote will show how much of a nerd I am, but it is from Lord of the Rings: ‘All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.’” More information about Jessica can be found on Twitter and WordPress. You can email her at email@example.com.
Amber Galaviz: “I’m a senior majoring in print journalism with a minor in writing. Growing up as a military brat across the country sparked an interest in travel, writing and photography. I enjoy writing feature stories and being able to share people’s experiences to others. Traveling has given me the opportunity to meet many people and visit many places; an opportunity I don’t want to end. The constant advances in journalism make it an exciting field and journalist hold a lot of responsability to the public.” As Ray Bradbury said, “Journalism keeps you planted in the earth.” More information about Amber can be found on Facebook and WordPress. Amber can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alix Hines: “I’m a senior from Altavista, majoring in print and broadcast journalism. I’ve interned with the Iraqi Young Leaders Exchange Program for VCU’s Social Media Institute and Richmond magazine, and I will be interning for CBS 6 this coming semester. I’ve also written several articles for the Commonwealth Times and wtvr.com. I often post unpublished work on my blog, Capture Untold Stories. Journalism has helped me combine my passion for writing, social justice and international issues into one field. I want to cast a light on issues that are often overlooked and tell the stories of everyday people. I admire the New York Times series ‘One in 8 Million,’ and I can envision a series similar to that but in another country. I truly believe that everyone has a story to tell, and I want to tell as many as I can. Not every story is happy or inspiring, but the human struggle is what I find the most intriguing. I hope to become an international correspondent after attending graduate school. My favorite quote comes from Katherine Boo of The New Yorker: ‘Very little journalism is world-changing, but if change is to happen, it will be because people with power have a better sense of what’s happening to people who have none.’” You can find more about Alix on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Blogger. Her email address is email@example.com.
Samuel Isaacs: “I’m a senior from Richmond. I am interested in food, cinema, politics and the environment. I’ve written for both the Commonwealth Times and Shafer Bird and interned with VCU Public Affairs. I chose journalism as a career path because I am interested in people, and the amazing things they do. I feel that as an aspiring journalist, it is my duty to tell the stories of people who achieve incredible things, and inform people on what is going on in their community. It is a very exciting time to get into the field of journalism because of the emergence of social networking and new media outlets. I am working on becoming well rounded on multiple platforms of reporting, and I look forward to my experience with CNS because it will force me to use everything I’ve learned to cover very relevant stories.” Favorite quote: “You are what you love, not what loves you.” — from the movie Adaptation. More information on Sam can be found at Twitter and his WordPress blog. You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Katherine Johnson: “I’m a junior from Virginia Beach, studying print journalism with a minor in political science. I’ve written for the Commonwealth Times, and completed an internship with Hampton Roads Magazine. I want to be a journalist so I can help people, and give those a voice that may not otherwise have one in our democracy. Journalism is an ever-changing field, and there are more platforms than ever to inform an audience. As a journalist today, it’s essential to have knowledge of each platform, from traditional print to online, video and social media. Journalists’ main responsibility is to serve the public by informing them about issues that affect them. I believe this is critical in ensuring a government ruled by the people, and that’s my goal as a CNS reporter.” Favorite quote — from Anderson Cooper: “A lot of compelling stories in the world aren’t being told, and the fact that people don’t know about them compounds the suffering.” More information about Katherine on Twitter, LinkedIn and Tumblr. You can email her at email@example.com.
Allison Landry: “I am a senior pursuing a bachelor’s degree in print journalism. I enjoy blogging on a variety of different topics, including technology, music, crime and I love to cover local trends. I have previously served as an intern for ChildFund international in Richmond. I have written for WTVR CBS 6 as well as for the Commonwealth Times. Most of my writing and published works can be viewed on my blog. You can also check out my Facebook page, Twitter (@allielandrysays) and LinkedIn profile. As a journalism, I believe it is important to know what is going on in the world, remain relevant and serve as as a voice for the people. Call it cheesy, but my favorite quote is from Dr. Seuss: ‘You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go …’” You can email Allison at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shelby Mertens: “I’m a junior print journalism major from Williamsburg, Virginia. I’m interested in politics, music and photography. I’ve written and photographed for VCU’s Ink Magazine. I want to be a journalist because I want to share people’s stories and give a voice to the voiceless. During this age of technology, it is vital for journalists to evolve in order to stay relevant. I have experience with video, audio, photography, and social media journalism. As a journalist, I believe it is my duty to be a watchdog of the government and represent the people. Journalists are an essential part of maintaining a healthy democracy.” Favorite quote: “There is a terrific disadvantage in not having the abrasive quality of the press applied to you daily. Even though we never like it, and even though we wish they didn’t write it, and even though we disapprove, there isn’t any doubt that we could not do the job at all in a free society without a very, very active press.” — John F. Kennedy. More information about Shelby can be found on Twitter and Tumblr. Her email address is email@example.com.
Samantha Morgan: “I am a senior print journalism major from Richmond, Virginia. I have always had a passion for writing and learning new things. I would love to combine my love for writing with traveling in order to expose stories that other people may not have had the chance to hear about before. I believe knowledge is power and the more one knows about the world around them, the better their life will be. I am very social media savy, I currently update all kinds of platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and WordPress. I believe social media is an incredible means of news telling and sharing, unlike we have ever seen before. One of my favorite quotes about journalism is from Ann Curry: ‘I try to do stories that make a difference — stories that affect the way people think, stories that people need to hear — and usually what drives me is to do stories about people who have no voice, people who have no political power, people who are overlooked by society.’” You can reach Samantha at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mark Robinson: “I am a junior print journalism major from Front Royal, Virginia. For the past two and a half years, I’ve worked at The Commonwealth Times, VCU’s independent student newspaper; I’m currently the managing editor. Outside of school, I’ve written for the Chesterfield Observer and completed an internship at ChildFund International, an international NGO based in Richmond. My journalistic exploits could not be confined to this continent, I decided, so while studying abroad at the University of Botswana during the fall semester, I freelanced and copy edited for a weekly newspaper in the capital city, Gaborone. It landed me in some interesting spots, to say the least. My favorite quote comes from blogger/media critic Paul Bradshaw, who runs the aptly titled ‘Online Journalism Blog.’ He declares: ‘I’m tired of people who think journalism is about stories, rather than people.’ I am, too, so I’m working painstakingly at my craft to become the next Jeffery Gettleman or Lane DeGregory of the world. All in good time. Questions? I can be reached at email@example.com. Follow me on Twitter. Read my blog. Connect on LinkedIn.”
Michael Schuster: “I am a senior broadcast journalism major and history minor from Falls Church, VA, who is pursuing a BA in spring, 2013. During my time at VCU, I’ve written a number of game summaries and feature stories for Chris Kowalczyk, the Director of Creative Content for VCU Athletics, and have been published in “Ram Report” magazine, a Richmond-based publication that covers all the VCU Athletic teams. In addition, I’ve contributed as a staff writer for the Commonwealth Times, covering sports stories, as well as relevant social issues facing the university. I really love writing and reporting on sports, music, politics, and business, and in the future hope to pursue sports commentating or a communications management position for a college or professional athletic team. I’ve always been passionate about journalism because it’s an absolutely necessary and respected field that keeps people informed, aware, and involved in an array of important issues. Writing was definitely my first love, and I wish to continue to do my best to present open, honest, and informative stories that serve the betterment of the public. One of my favorite quotes comes from Jack Kerouac’s novel, On the Road: ‘Nothing behind me, everything ahead of me, as is ever so on the road.’” You can find out more about Michael on WordPress or Twitter. He can also be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Amber Shiflett: “I am a senior print journalism major and a creative writing minor from Richmond, Virginia. I am currently working as a marketing intern at Snagajob where I generate content for job seekers across the nation. During my career at VCU I have contributed to various local publications including rvabusiness.com and WTVR CBS 6. I believe social media is the future for journalists and spend much of my time developing my social media platforms. I have worked as a social media marketing intern for Stanley Antiques & Fine Art and currently serve as the social media coordinator for the VCU chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. I am also an active photographer and photo journalist, you can find some of my work on my tumblr. My inspiration as a journalist is to report on issues that motivate people to make a change in the world. I love to interview people and hear their stories. Although my career goal is constantly evolving my ultimate dream is of becoming an investigative journalist. One of my favorite quotes comes from American writer A. Branson Alcott: ’Success is sweet: the sweeter if long delayed and attained through manifold struggles and defeats.’” You can find out more about Amber on WordPress, Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook. Her email address is email@example.com.
Kristen Smith: “I am a broadcast journalism major from Gainesville, Virginia. I am a senior and will be graduating in the Spring of 2013. I will be a social media intern with Habitat for Humanity next semester. I transferred to Virginia Commonwealth University from Christopher Newport University in 2011. I have always held a passion for writing. As a journalist, I believe it is my job to honestly inform the public about issues that they may have not been able to find out on their own. I believe that being a journalist allows me to help people, which is my passion in life. As a journalist today, it is crucial to be trained on all platforms. One of my favorite quotes is by the Dalai Lama: ‘Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.’” You can find out more about Kristen on Tumblr or on Twitter. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whitney Spicer: “I am a print journalism major from Bowling Green, Virginia. I have always been passionate about writing and love studying a major that allows me to craft my writing skills. My favorite thing about journalism is the variety it offers. I love learning about all kinds of topics and getting to discuss them through my writing. I am a true lover of words and am constantly fascinated how the right word, placed in the right spot, can have such a huge impact. One of my favorite quotes is from Mark Twain – ‘The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.’” Read more about Whitney on her portfolio and blog. You can reach her by email at email@example.com.
In addition, Mechelle Hankerson is serving as an assistant editor f0r CNS, focusing on social media: “I’m a senior print journalism major from Virginia Beach and am returning for my second semester in CNS. Last spring, I was a CNS reporter and closely followed legislation regarding the proposed Castle Doctrine and teacher evaluations. This year, I will be focused on CNS’s social media including Twitter, Tumblr and Facebook. I currently serve as the executive editor at VCU’s student newspaper, The Commonwealth Times and recently completed a project with The Washington Post called The 12, where I blogged about the presidential election in Virginia. You can find me on LinkedIn, Twitter and Tumblr.” Mechelle’s email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Geoffrey Cooper, a student in the multimedia journalism master’s program at VCU, also will serve as an editor. He can be reached at email@example.com.
The director of CNS is Jeff South, an associate professor in the VCU School of Mass Communications. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 804-827-0253.
Here are the CNS reporters for Spring 2012:
|Michael Bodine||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Mason Brown||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Zack Budryk||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Charles Couch||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Brad Fulton||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Sherese Gore||CNS clips||Portfolio|
|Mechelle Hankerson||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Brian Hill||CNS clips||Portfolio|
|Daniel Lombardo||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Ashley McLeod||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Alexandra Morton||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Ryan Murphy||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Chaneé Patterson||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Claire Porter||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Leah Small||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Christine Stoddard||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Pia Talwar||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Amir Vera||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
|Alexandra Wiggins||CNS clips||Résumé and portfolio|
Here is the CNS staff for Spring 2011:
CNS alum Matt Birch, who covers the National Football League as an associate editor for BleacherReport.com, offers these job-hunting tips to young journalists.