I am a recent graduate of Hofstra University, earning a B.A. in print journalism and English with a concentration in publishing studies and literature.
My unofficial introduction into the world of journalism was in 2006, when I started writing for Associated Content, which is now owned by Yahoo. From there, I began to write for Demand Studios, Helium, and Suite 101. While some people may denounce these sites as content mills, I found them to be learning experiences. I developed my writing style and confidence writing for these sites, and never once felt that the work I was doing was illegitimate simply because of its dependence on SEO. Looking back, I realize I would never be where I am today if I hadn’t used these sites as steppingstones to “real” journalism.
In 2009, the spring semester of my freshman year, I wrote an article about racial violence on Long Island for the School of Communication’s hyperlocal news website, NassauNewsLive.com. Through the fall 2009 semester, I wrote several more articles for the site, ranging from reactions to the Newsday paywall to community leaders in Hempstead fighting to eliminate AIDS. In spring 2010, under the direction of advisor Mo Krochmal and managing editor Tim Robertson, I became an editor for NNL, overseeing Town of Hempstead news and acting as an anchor for our weekly Livestream recaps.
Following Robertson’s graduation, I became the new managing editor of Nassau News Live in the fall of 2010. Under the advisement of Kelly Fincham, the site expanded. Instead of covering only the neighborhoods immediately surrounding the university the new website, now called LongIslandReport.org, covered more of Nassau County and occasionally Suffolk County. Our official launch was during the New York State governor’s debate, where myself and several members of my editorial team live-tweeted, recorded, and reported on the event. Following the debate, I was able to get a video of candidate Jimmy McMillan of the “Rent is Too Damn High” party which quickly received over 300,000 views on YouTube and is LIR’s most viewed and commented on video to date. I also worked as a student aide to Dr. Kristal Brent Zook, aiding in research for her fourth book and performing clerical duties as directed.
After leaving Long Island Report the following spring, I began a social media and marketing internship at Ironic North Shore Music Booking Agency. My duties included writing press releases, promoting events on Facebook, Twitter, and online publications, and maintaining an up-to-date calendar of all the band gigs. During this time, I also worked as a student aide to Prof. Paul Mihailidis, collecting information about students’ social media habits.
Over the summer, I interned at WEGO Health, a social media website for health activists. During my time there, I wrote blog posts about the use of technology in health care, overcoming stigma in regards to certain health conditions, among others.
In August, I attended the National Association of Black Journalists convention in Philadelphia. During a record-breaking year in terms of applications, I was chosen as one of thirty students to participate in their student multimedia project. Over the course of five days, I worked in the newsroom editing copy for print and for the web, as well as editing scripts for broadcasts. I also wrote an article about General Motors’ “Road to NABJ.”
In my second to last semester at Hofstra, I was an editorial intern at DOWNTOWN Magazine. DOWNTOWN is a lifestyle magazine about lower Manhattan, covering fashion, news, night life, and everything in between. Since starting there in September, I wrote about the Occupy Wall Street protests, changes to Downtown real estate and school districts, as well as conducted interviews with local business owners and entrepreneurs.
In addition to all of the above, I also freelance for Healthline.com, where I’ve written about how sunlight can help fight stress, the health benefits of tea, and how to decipher organic labeling and understand exactly what is meant by processed foods. I am also an editor and contributor for SoFreshandSoGreen.com and the former president of the Hofstra Association of Black Journalists (HABJ).