Author: Arselia

2014: A Year in Review

Hello hello!

Once again the New Year is upon us and it’s out with the old and in with the new. Or so we hope. Overall I would say 2014 was an amazing year and I cannot believe that 2015 is just hours away.

Some of 2014’s highlights:

  • Interned with The Dallas Morning News for 6 months; had two A1 stories.
  • Had an amazing 22nd birthday and celebrated with some of my closest friends and family.
  • Made some great new friends in Dallas and strengthened current friendships.
  • Met Nordstrom CEO Blake Nordstrom.
  • Met Georgetown professor and MSNBC political analyst Michael Eric Dyson.
  • Went to the On the Run Tour and saw Beyoncé live for a second time.
  • Went to Las Vegas with close friends.
  • Visited the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, KY with my parents.
  • Briefly met Alex Pettyfer.
  • Traveled to Houston as a finalist for the Hearst Journalism Fellowship.
  • Started taking ballet classes after a 6-year hiatus.
  • Began working as an assistant editor for trade publication Farran Media.

For some reason the thought of 2015 really scares me. I’ve been out of college for a year and I feel like this year will truly decide the course of my life (at least for the next few years). I turn 23 in 4 months and I feel like in a way I’m leaving my 20s behind.

I’m currently doing some contract work with Farran Media and I’m hoping this will turn into a full-time job. Although I lived on my own for 6 months in Dallas, I wasn’t 100% self-sufficient. I’m hoping that will become a reality in 2015. I want to maintain and strengthen my current relationships with friends and family as well as reconnect with people I don’t talk to as much as I used to.

I am so glad I started taking ballet classes again. Not only is ballet fun, it’s a great way to stay in shape. I wish I never took a break but I’m not taking another one any time soon.

In short, if 2015 is anything like 2014 I know I’ll have a great year.

Happy New Year everyone!

Time flies when you’re having fun

It’s hard to believe that today marks my end of my 12th week at The Dallas Morning News. I’ve been in Dallas for almost 3 months. It seems like just yesterday I was at home in Scottsdale freaking out about the weeks ahead and packing up my belongings. I feel like I just moved into my apartment and my mom just left.

Now, I’ve had 15 articles published, met the CEO of Nordstrom (my favorite department store) and interviewed the CEO of Spanx. I wrote my first earnings story (yes it’s just as awful as it sounds) and learned about the vibrant startup community in Dallas. I celebrated my 22nd birthday with my family and closest friends and went to Houston and interviewed for the Hearst Journalism Fellowship. Unfortunately, I didn’t get the fellowship but I’m honored that I was one of fourteen finalists.

That's Blake Nordstrom! President of the popular department store, Nordstrom (obviously).

That’s Blake Nordstrom! President of the popular department store, Nordstrom (obviously).

Three months ago I thought today would be the day I was packing my bags yet again and moving back home to Scottsdale. Instead, I got the exciting news that my internship was extended for another ten weeks! That’s right, I’ll be in the Big D until the end of July. I know it sounds silly, but this exciting news made me a little sad. I was looking forward to going back to Scottsdale and reuniting with my parents and seeing my friends (I’m already looking at flights home for the Fourth of July as I write this).

I’m also happy that my editors and the internship coordinator really wanted to keep me here past the 12 weeks I was allotted. It’s nice to know that they enjoy my work and that they believe I am a great addition to both the paper and the business section. I’ve gotten close to many of my coworkers and I’m glad I don’t have to leave them just yet. Initially, I wasn’t even sure I was going to get the extension and it was looking like there wasn’t enough money in the paper’s budget to keep me here. But the journalism gods found a way to keep me here and I am forever grateful.

These next 10 weeks I’m going to push myself more than I already have and I’m sure I’ll have an extremely rewarding time at the paper. I’m also excited that I’ll be able to meet the other summer interns and participate in the internship activities. But now, I’m going to relax and enjoy this wonderful three-day weekend.

I hope you’ll do the same.

Happy Tuesday!

Happy Tuesday everyone! I can’t believe that this week marks my fourth week at The Dallas Morning News. It seems as if March flew by and April (and my birthday) is just around the corner. Time seriously waits for no one.

I’m really enjoying my internship and everyone at the office is extremely friendly, especially my mentor. So far I’ve had four stories published and I am currently working on five more! Things have been going pretty smoothly and I am adjusting to living by myself since my mom left last Saturday 😦

In my spare time I’ve been applying for jobs and learning how to navigate the city. I even left my apartment this weekend! As I’ve mentioned before, my dad has a childhood friend who lives in Fort Worth and he has a daughter who’s my age that goes to Midwestern State University. She was home for Spring Break last week and we hung out on Saturday. I had a great time and I’m proud of myself for driving to Fort Worth!

In addition to making a friend, I recently found out that I am a finalist for a Hearst Journalism Fellowship! I applied for the two-year fellowship back in January and I can’t believe I was selected as one of 14 finalists! I will be traveling to Houston in April to interview with the selection committee. If I’m selected as a fellow I will spend one year working full-time at a Hearst newspaper and another year working at a different Hearst paper. After completion of the fellowship I would “graduate” and most likely be hired by Hearst. The fellowship would give me so much experience and prepare me for a full-time position at any newspaper. Even if I’m not selected as a fellow, I am extremely grateful for this opportunity. I am also very thankful to all my instructors at the Cronkite School and mentors at my previous internships. I wouldn’t be where I am today without their instruction and without the support from my parents.

I leave for Houston just two days after my 22nd birthday so April is going to be an exciting month. Wish me luck! 🙂

One Week Down

Are we there yet?

Are we there yet?

Whenever you think of something in terms of “one week” does the Barenaked Ladies song pop in your head? Well it does for me. Anyways…

Today marks the end of my first full week at The Dallas Morning News and my first week in Dallas. The drive into Dallas last Friday was a bit stressful. There are so many freeway interchanges and WAY too much construction! As soon as we entered El Paso (my childhood home for 7 years) we were surrounded by pick-up trucks. I guess everything really is bigger in Texas. Texan drivers are a bit…dangerous for a lack of better words. If you don’t pay close attention, you might get run over. About an hour or two outside of the Dallas city limits my parents and I encountered a drunk driver. The experience was scary but luckily we made it safely and no one was hurt.

It’s been an interesting seven days to say the least, especially in terms of the weather. If you follow me on any social media outlet you may have seen me freaking out about the sleet, snow, freezing rain and freezing temperatures on Sunday the 2nd. After living on the West Coast the majority of my life I haven’t had to deal with severely “cold” weather (although I think anything below 65 degrees is cold). When I moved into my apartment on the first of the month the temperatures were in the high 70s, low 80s. Yay! But then, a winter weather advisory appeared. Temperatures were expected to plunge 50 degrees overnight. My parents and I stayed in all day Sunday (with the exception of my dad going to get some more groceries. Thanks Dad!) because of the awful weather. The roads were icy and outside was no place to be. All of our plans were ruined. We didn’t get to drive by the office or visit one of my father’s childhood friends in Fort Worth.

Temperatures started to warm up for my first day on Monday but it was still pretty cold at a “toasty” 30 degrees. Luckily, my parents accompanied me to the office and my dad drove me to work. I met a lot of people in the office, got settled in at my desk and filled out some paperwork with HR. My parents and I were also able to visit my dad’s friend. On Tuesday, I drove myself to work with my dad in the passenger seat. I met my mentor and got assigned my first story. My dad drove back to Scottsdale on Wednesday and my mom is staying with me until next Saturday. On Thursday, I interviewed the founder of a tech startup for a story that should run in the paper on Sunday the 16th. My mentor is profiling two companies and I’m profiling one, therefore the story will have a double byline.

First day of internship!

Since Wednesday I’ve been driving to work by myself and even to the grocery store. Slowly but surely I am learning the enigma that is Dallas. On Sunday, my mother and I are going to visit The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza. I can’t wait. It’s hard to believe that I live and work so close to such an important piece of history.

It was a great and busy first week and boy am I ready for the weekend!

Oh. Just in case you started to have a Barenaked Ladies craving I’ve got your back.

TTFN – Ta Ta For Now

Today is my last day in Arizona for at least 12 weeks.

Even though I’ve had roughly three months to prepare it seems as if this internship just snuck up on me. It’s hard to believe that I’ll be thrust into the workforce on Monday. I feel as if I didn’t have enough time to say goodbye to some of my closest friends but I did the best I could. After a series of heartfelt goodbyes it was time to prepare for the next chapter in my life. Right now I need to focus on packing and getting everything together for this expensive endeavor.

When I interned in Milwaukee things were much simpler. I was lucky enough to be able to rent a room from a woman who dealt strictly with female students and interns. The room was furnished and rent included cable, water and electric. The hunt for a place to live in Dallas wasn’t so easy. I ended up renting an apartment for three months and unlike my place in Milwaukee, the apartment didn’t come furnished.  I had to set up cable and rent my own furniture. I’m glad to have a place of my own but it definitely came with a high price. I’m very thankful to have my parents’ emotional and financial support because without them this move wouldn’t be possible.

My journey starts tomorrow. At approximately 8:30am my parents and I will begin our 15 hour trek to Dallas. We are going to make a pit stop in El Paso (we lived there from 1996-2003) and leave for Dallas on the 28th. I’ll move into my new apartment on Saturday the 1st and start interning on Monday the 3rd. My dad’s going to drive back on Tuesday and my mother will be staying with me until the 15th to help me settle in.

I’m not too thrilled about all this but I think once I get there I’ll feel a little better.

See you soon Dallas.

Welcome to Life After Grad

It’s been roughly 8 weeks since I graduated college and I still feel like a student since I’ve been working on campus for the past month.

As of now, life after graduation has been both fun and stressful. It’s nice to not have to deal with classes and tests and still have the freedom of not being tied down by a full-time job. Don’t get me wrong, I can’t wait to be truly independent and support myself financially but at the same time I just want to relax all day. But if that’s the case, why did I spend 3.5 years at ASU? Sure it’s nice to have a degree but shouldn’t I want to do something with my degree?

In just two weeks I’m moving to Dallas to start a three-month internship with the Dallas Morning News. I’m excited to see a new city and experience new things but at the same time I would be happy just staying at home and working for the Arizona Republic (*hint hint*). I’m also kind of scared to intern away from home again (I interned with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in the summer of 2013). Being away from my parents and friends is not fun but it’s something I’ll need to get accustomed to.

The fact that I’m so scared about Dallas made me realize how scared I am for the real world. What if they hire me? I’ve moved around so much in my life that I just want to stay put for awhile. Working in a city that’s 1,000 miles away from home does not sound appealing. A lot of my classmates and other Cronkite graduates have accepted job positions in other states and I know that most likely I won’t be able to work in the Phoenix metropolitan area after I finish my internship. It’s also weird to think of life without Spring Break, Christmas Break, Summer Break etc. Working without a three-month break in between sounds brutal.

I decided to start blogging in order to detail my random thoughts and emotions during this transition period and also to track my progress. In the coming weeks and months I expect to be overcome with numerous emotions that might be difficult to process at times. I’m going to have to make difficult decisions that will have a great impact on my life and I want to look back at this and realize how far I’ve come and how far I still need to go.

Here’s to life after grad.