Samantha-Jo, a University of Arizona student and participant in the Capital Semester Spring 2013 program, moved into her apartment in Washington, DC on January 16th, and within just a few days, she was covering the 57th Presidential Inauguration as a reporter for her spring internship at Time Warner Cable. We asked her to sum up this unique experience:
“Working and living in Washington, DC during such an exciting time in our nation’s history has exceeded my expectations thus far. As an aspiring broadcast journalist, I knew it was crucial for me to get work experience in the capital. I wasn’t sure what my duties would be as an intern in the media industry, but I was determined to spend a semester in Washington.
During my first week with my internship at the Time Warner Cable local news bureau, I covered the 57th Presidential Inauguration. My boss applied for press credentials on my behalf in early November, although I was told it wasn’t likely that I would be approved. As soon as I arrived in Washington, the city was overflowing with people. Decorations for the inauguration were on every corner, and barricades and fences were being put in place for the ceremony. While I was moving into my new apartment, I got an email from my boss explaining that my credentials had been confirmed. I couldn’t have been more excited.
The day of the inauguration felt like a dream. Words cannot describe what that historic day was like for me. I woke up at 2:30 a.m. to go through the media security checkpoints. I then took my place on the media riser before the ceremony began. It was the most surreal feeling. Looking around, I saw a sea of network anchors and reporters. It was a surprise and an honor to be standing in the same place, wearing the same credentials as these distinguished and successful media personnel. I was probably the youngest person covering the inauguration with television news, and I was the only intern in the media area. From the riser, I could see rows of people gathered around the Washington monument. I was so high up that they all looked like ants.
When President Obama spoke, I could have sworn he was looking and speaking directly to me. The experience was something that I will remember for the rest of my life. I feel so fortunate to have had this opportunity in my very first week on the job. I refuse to accept that this was a once in a lifetime opportunity for me, and I hope to be covering the inauguration of a future president in my career as a political reporter.
I have been blogging about all of my experiences in Washington. Feel free to follow my blog at http://www.samijoroth.com under the tab ‘SJ in DC’.”
Sami-Jo has been busy since she arrived. Check out some of the stories she has shot, written, and edited.
Pre Inauguration story: