One Door Closes

Yesterday was my last day working in TIME Magazine’s Washington Bureau. I can say with confidence that is has been an extraordinarily valuable experience, and I’m glad I did it. I’ve learned a lot about myself and journalism, and the experience I gained made up for the lack of pay, lack of credits, and long hours.

The day I left, I was surprised twice. Once, the earthquake, of course (for the record, an earthquake 9 stories up feels like the building is swaying. It’s truly frightening.) Right after that, everyone left in the office held a going-away party for me with Georgetown Cupcakes. Mark Thompson, a Pulitzer-prize winning journalist who I worked with these past two and a half months, gave a heart-warming toast as a send-off, and we talked about my future plans. I was so honored by the little ceremony.

Before I knew it, I was cleaning out my desk and leaving the TIME bureau for the last time as an intern. It was very bittersweet. Of course, I was sad to close this chapter of my life. But at the same time, I’m glad to be working at my school newspaper again, where I have more control over content of the publication because I’m an editor. I’m glad to be going back to classes. And I’m glad I don’t have to wake up at 6am for a while!

I’ve gotten to work with some great journalists who have taught me a lot (most of which I won’t care to outline again since I’ve already written about them). Beyond simple techniques regarding researching and interviewing, they’ve taught me more about what I don’t know. They have such a magnificent grasp on what is happening in politics, and it’s astounding how quickly they are able to remember even the tiniest detail. They see three moves ahead of what I can predict, and they know exactly who to talk to any given story. I have the work ethic and, I am developing the skills I need to eventually become a full-time reporter. But before that happens, I need to read up on politics more often, discuss more often, and hone my skills so that one day I can be as talented as everyone else there is.

I’ve gotten some great practice honing my interviewing, writing, and researching skills over the last two and a half months. I’ve published over 40 articles on on a wide variety of subjects, and I’ll be able to use those for upcoming job/internship applications.

In fact, I had an interview today with David Wilensky of New Voices Magazine, a national publication for college-age Jews. I’m happy to announce that I am the newest national correspondent for New Voices, and my first article is due Monday. Though it’s not the only reason I got the job, my role at TIME certainly helped me become a professional journalist.

It is true. When one door closes, another swings wide open.