My experience as a journalism intern at The Pavlovic Today taught me so much more than simply how to write news.

It helped me find my voice as a journalist and challenge the preconceived notions I had about this profession. Now, more than ever, I know that journalism is the career I wish to pursue, and I have The Pavlovic Today to thank for that.

The Pavlovic Today gave me space to fall down, get up, fall down again, and get back up. Challenging and high-pressure, this experience made me more resilient to the challenges of the journalism industry. It takes practice and repetition to get the story right. And although I still have much to learn, I feel prepared for the next steps in my journalism career following the intensive training I received from the amazing Ksenija Pavlovic.

Here are some of the key takeaways from my time as a Political News Reporter at The Pavlovic Today:

Start with the news. On a practical note, one of the most important lessons I learned at The Pavlovic Today’s news desk is “start with the news.” I learned how to control the urge to write a long, unnecessary paragraph before getting to the real news. That is not how it works in a fast-paced news environment. Do not tease the reader, open with the news.

Trust yourself. Sometimes when I am writing stories, I hear an annoying voice at the back of my mind saying, “Lori, this is not good enough,” or “you are not doing this right.” In those moments, I learned that it is important to take a deep breath, go over what I have written, and do a small outline of what I want to write next. Most of the time, I had everything I needed right in front of me and was just overwhelmed with self-doubt and insecurities. The Pavlovic Today taught me how to be persistent with myself and believe in what I am capable of. Sit down. Write that damn story. You will be okay.

The Pavlovic Today gave me space to fall down, get up, fall down again, and get back up. Challenging and high-pressure, this experience made me more resilient to the challenges of the journalism industry.

Journalism intern at The Pavlovic Today, Lori Rampant

Communicate. However, at times I needed an outsider’s help to put my derailed thoughts back into action. And when that happened, I would communicate it to my supervisor.

In all honesty, sometimes I would hesitate to send an email asking for help. Do. Not. Do. That.

Pavlovic McAteer has years of experience in the journalism industry, and she is there to help you get the story right. At times, I would fail to get the desired angle for a story, and she would patiently walk me through what the story should look like.

This industry is incredibly fast, reporters need to act accordingly. This is a high-pressure industry that demands agility and focus.

At The Pavlovic Today, I learned how to write concise and pragmatic pieces within tight deadlines. While reporting on briefings, I learned several techniques. For example, there is no need to write down every single word that the press secretary is saying. You need to pay close attention to what is being said and hear the news instead of robotically typing it down.

A good reporter will identify the highlights of the briefing and take notes accordingly.

Pro tip: At times, the questions journalists ask at briefings can be as important, if not more, than the answers.

There is always a story. Maybe the angle was not what you were expecting it to be, but believe me, if there is something that I learned from my guidance at The Pavlovic Today, it is that there is always a story to report on.

During the classified documents crisis, when document upon document was found in President Biden’s possession, the White House representatives would always respond with ready-made answers, such as “I would refer you to the Department of Justice on this” or “I have nothing else to add.”

Although it may seem like there isn’t much of a story to get from that briefing since the representative kept repeating themselves and, quite literally, had nothing to add, it is actually the opposite. The story you are looking for is exactly that: the fact that the White House refused to answer the public’s questions.

Translating my thoughts into words. The Pavlovic Today’s Gen Z column gives voice to Gen Z-ers around the world. We are one of the most politically involved generations and eager to make a difference in the world.

At The Pavlovic Today, I expressed myself by shining light on and discussing some of the issues that are most important to me and my generation. With the guidance of the White House Correspondent Ksenija Pavlovic, I learned how to think outside of the box and better translate my opinions and thoughts into words.

My experience at The Pavlovic Today was different than anything I have ever gone through. I laughed, cried, hated my work, and loved my work, all of that while learning and engaging with the field. This training changed me in a million different ways, and I could not be more grateful to this program for the journalism and life lessons it taught me along the way.


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