Student Discovers New Beat through Newspaper Internship

Asbury University senior Leslie Ferrell’s internship with The State Journal in Frankfort, Ky., was a blessing in more ways than one. The opportunity to work with a professional newspaper not only challenged her to grow professionally, but there were personal and spiritual benefits, as well.

Leslie Ferrell '14 serves as managing editor of Asbury's student newspaper, The Collegian.
Leslie Ferrell '14 serves as managing editor of Asbury's student newspaper, The Collegian.

Ferrell’s main duties at The State Journal included writing obituaries, attending budget meetings, uploading articles to the paper’s Web site, conducting interviews and writing articles. She found that the biggest benefit of the internship was personal growth produced by unfamiliar surroundings. Not only did her newsroom experience help her learn what she liked and disliked about journalism, it pushed her to build relationships and interact with new ideas.

“It helped me learn more about myself,” she said. “It helped me in learning where I stand on certain things, talking to people, just getting to know others, and not being afraid to put myself out there.”

Another lesson Ferrell has taken away from her internship is deliberate productivity, even at times when it looks like there’s nothing to do. Over the summer, she frequently found ways to contribute to projects even after her internship hours had been fulfilled.

“There were a lot of days when I would be sitting at my desk at 2 p.m. thinking, ‘I could leave now and nobody would miss me,’ but I just decided that I was going to stay, and I was going to ask where I was needed,” she said. “You have to think about the impact you leave with people after you’re gone and whether you’re a hard worker or not.”

During her internship, Ferrell was challenged to live out her faith at work, even in small things like having a good attitude early in the morning.

“It’s a little hard waking up every morning at 6 and then being there at 8, and I was majorly out of my comfort zone in every possible way,” she said. “But I wanted to come in every morning, even though I was just writing obituaries, and do what I’ve learned since I was little — to do everything joyfully, as if you’re working for God.”

--by Joel Sams '15

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