Internships with KosovaLive II - Working as Real Journalists: Video Transcript

Kara Ferguson [Journalism and Psychology majors]: In Kosova, we worked as real journalists. We had to fact check and stuff like that. We had to report to editors and not just one — we had to report to two.

Well, you have deadlines, so that's the first thing you learn as a journalist, and you really have to stick to them. You have to go out there and get the story, even if it means taking it to the streets or calling up people of the government and getting the story that way. You can't be too shy about it. You just kind of have to go for it because you really can talk to anyone.

At first it's kind of difficult because you don't know what people want or anything, but you get used to it, and you can start to write them easier. And it's kind of fun to see your stuff out there, to see it published online and it could possibly be picked up by anywhere, any newspaper around the Balkans or in Kosova. So, that was really cool. It was cool to know that people were reading my stuff.

For a young journalist, it's kind of interesting because they kind of look at you differently because you're American. They want to get to know you. They want to get to tell their story. And so a lot of people will seek you out to have their story told and just to talk to you.

I think, being immersed in the culture, you start to see issues that really affect people. You talk to people and they give you ideas of stuff that really affects them and your types of stories kind of change. You're still looking at things from an American point of view because constantly you're comparing it to America and you're like, "Oh, well, this isn't the same." So, in that aspect it was really difficult to pick stories because what's important to me might not really be important to them. But being immersed in it, you really start to see what their problems are and they also give you a feel for what their problems are, too. They will tell you. And so your stories kind of get more serious.

But I definitely realized through this trip that journalism is the career path that I want. I think it was a great experience because I really realized what I wanted to do in my life and I got the confidence to do it.

[September 2010]