NBCLA.com Internship Testimonial: Sophia Kunthara, ASU 2016

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Interning at NBCLA has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my journalism career so far. The internship encompasses everything it means to be a digital journalist in this day and age, from writing stories quickly and accurately, engaging with audiences on the website and over social media and creating meaningful web content.

When I first interviewed for this internship, I remember saying I wanted to take what I had learned in school and at previous internships and take those skills to the next level. But the digital internship definitely exceeded my expectations and helped me improve in so many different ways.

My previous internships were reporting internships, so I would report and write a story and my editors and digital producers would take care of everything else. But at NBCLA, I was responsible for so much more than just writing. I learned how to produce a story from start to finish, from the reporting and writing to adding multimedia elements to making it live on the website.

Working in a fast-paced environment in the second largest media market in the U.S. is an experience unlike any other. It trained me to work quickly and always look for new ways to make content interesting and engaging.

The best experience I had as an intern was working during breaking news, like police pursuits, when I worked with the digital team to quickly write stories, build galleries, tweet, post on Snapchat and help push content on all digital platforms.

Being in the middle of a breaker is an extremely valuable experience and I know I gained skills that will carry on into my career. There's nothing quite like racing against the clock to be the first to get a story on the web.

Before I came to NBCLA, I thought my social media skills were pretty good. I'm a regular Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat user and I didn't think working with social media would challenge me. I learned so much about how to create conversational, engaging posts that pull an audience in to give them the story.

By sitting in on planning meetings, I learned how social media strategies are developed and executed. I was able to work with other digital producers to write social media posts and find relevant content for all of NBCLA's social media platforms.

The best part about interning at NBCLA was being treated like a full member of the digital team. I was able to participate in planning meetings throughout the day and was responsible for producing content to keep the website updated. Throughout the experience, I learned how to be more forward-thinking when it comes to storytelling.

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