Published on July 30, 2013, by in Internships.

Jessica PenaWhat a jam-packed day. My mentor and I started the day with treatment plan meetings for three of the newest boys and one for a boy whose time has recently been extended. Treatment plan meetings generally occur three times during the typical 90-day stay. The initial meeting (for new residents) is attended by the treatment team only. This team is made up of representatives from each department responsible for aiding the resident’s rehabilitation. The meetings are used to assess the resident and their current situation. Discussing any progress the resident has made is a big part of the meeting. The goal of the meetings is to determine if the resident’s plan is working successfully, if not, changes are made. The boys attend all the meetings after the initial planning meeting. The meetings helped me to understand the importance of structure and progress in a juvenile’s treatment. Organization and sticking to a plan is crucial in this line of work, BUT it is equally important to be flexible and ready to make changes. Understanding and the ability to read others are skills a counselor must possess.

After treatment planning, my mentor and I began to set up for family night. Once a month the boys are allowed to have family visit for dinner and activities. Every boy looks forward to family night and the possibility of seeing his family. I noticed that as soon as the boys saw my mentor, they would ask her and re-ask and check again if they had family coming. Even when she told a few of them that it wasn’t likely they were still hopeful someone would show up. When dinner was brought over from the kitchen, my mentor and I began to set up. All of the boys asked if there was anything they could do to help. They were very helpful and polite. Once the cleaning and set-up was done, the waiting began. The boys sat around the room, not so patiently waiting for their guests to arrive. They talked to each other and the staff to pass time. Occasionally, their impatience took the best of them and they would gather around the window to check if anyone was coming. There was no way to hide the hope and excitement in each of their eyes; the value of family really struck me in these moments. Here were these tough boys, branded as criminals and claiming the “thug-life,” bouncing around like puppies waiting to see their families. It was truly beautiful. When families began to arrive it was even more touching. Three of the boys had younger siblings visit. The little ones ran and hugged their older brother usually giggling and excitedly telling them everything they could. These boys held on to the little ones the entire visit, only putting them down when it was time to go. It was an emotional sight. It made me so happy and so sad all at once. These boys with such loving hearts mixed themselves into trouble and have been forced away from the ones they love.

Already this experience is teaching me to be in check with my emotions. Being a counselor, I will see so many emotional things. It is most important to keep my “poker face” and not let whatever I am hearing or seeing affect me negatively. This has always been my main concern, but I impress myself. I have learned not to suppress my feelings but shift them towards a more useful outlet.

Published on July 29, 2013, by in Internships, Journalism.

7.29 Mortal InstrumentsI haven’t written in over a week now. It’s not because I’ve been busy but because I haven’t had much to write about. I’ve written several volunteer articles but there’s nothing out of the ordinary. I do want to share an experience I had middle of last week though.

Before that though, let me just update you on what’s been going on in my world. San Diego Comic-Con closed last weekend so everyone at The Daily Quirk has been super busy writing as much as we can on all the footage we received. Every day there was a new Comic-Con article or video feature. It was so crazy, and I had never seen anything like it. I actually wrote an article 7.29 Divergenton “Mortal Instruments” that comes out on August 21 and on “Divergent” that comes out in 2014. Both of these movies are book-to-movie adaptions, which is a common theme at this year’s Comic-Con.

Now onto that experience I mentioned earlier… Here is what happened. I get an email from my managing editor about writing a break story about “Once Upon A Time” actor David Anders announcing his return to the show (Anders play’s Dr. Whale/Dr. Frankenstein). She asks if I’ve ever watched the show, and I hadn’t at that point. I decided though, that the article could be written so long as I did my research.

Well, I write the article and I didn’t feel too confident about it and as it turns out I had every reason to feel nervous about submitting it. There was a lot wrong with it, particularly in my wording and of course my lack of knowledge. So with this I learned a very important lesson: sometimes it’s best to just say no.

I knew from the start I had no idea what the show was about, and there was a good chance I couldn’t just write my way through it. From that moment on I’ve made sure to carefully think over my volunteer opportunities to make sure it’s something that’s doable and easily researched. I have a soft spot for helping however I can, and this is my blessing, and flaw, at it’s finest.

What I learned is this: since I work for the company now I need to make sure I catch up on all the shows they cover. I don’t want to be caught in a position where I can’t give my best work. It not only wastes my time but more importantly it wastes the companies time. I have to take it slow, but I’ve already started watching “Once Upon A Time” and I have a fairly long list growing. I also learned sometimes it might be better to just say no. If I don’t know enough on a topic, don’t take it. Better safe than sorry, unless you know the research will truly pay off.

7.29 Arrested DevelopmentI thankfully had more luck last Friday when I got to break the news on “Arrested Development” coming back for a fifth season on Netflix. I still had some wording issues, but it went much better because, well, it got published! Well that’s it, hoping to finish this summer off strong with a few more posts before school starts back. Excited to get back to HPU, it’s been a long three months away from home.

Read my “Mortal Instruments” article here:

Read my “Divergent” article here:

Read my “Arrested Development” article here:

Published on July 26, 2013, by in Internships, Marketing.

6.19 AmyStep 7: Follow up with the reporters a few days later

If you don’t hear back from the reporter, it’s a good idea to follow up. So, a few days after I send the original pitch, I follow up by email, forwarding the original email and adding a short note to the reporter following up and offering help if needed. This is a good way to nudge them and remind them of your pitch in case it’d fallen off their radar. There are a lot of different (and very polarizing) opinions out there about following up by phone and from what I’ve read it all depends on the reporter. (Although one thing I’ve gathered for sure, it’s not a good idea to send a pitch and then call 10 minutes later and ask “did you get the email I sent?” This is a major no-no.) Once you have a relationship with a journalist you’ll know whether or not a follow up phone call is a good idea, but for me, this is my first time interacting with these reporters. So for the most part I’ve avoided calling to follow up at risk of alienating the reporter. But there have been a few times I’ve followed up via phone. I did so, mostly with smaller papers, when it seemed like the story was such a good fit that I didn’t think that newspaper would want to miss out on this story opportunity. I was really nervous about calling the first time (and actually typed in the number and then stared at the phone for a minute before finally pressing send) but the phone call actually resulted in a story placement, so that gave me a bit of confidence.

I know the reporters are really busy and therefore cannot always reply, but sometimes I wish they’d just let me know “Nope, we’re not interested” so that I would know and then didn’t have to bother them anymore. After I followed up with one paper I received this, which has to be one of the vaguest most noncommittal brush-offs ever, so it was pretty funny.

“Let me talk to my editor and see if/when I could get some time sometime soon to maybe work on a story and I’ll let you know.”

But at least he responded. So hey, that’s something.


7.26 Media Fellows 1For the past week and a half I have not been at my internship but I have been in Los Angeles, California with High Point’s Media Fellow Program. High Point University’s Media Fellows Program gives students global perspectives and real-world experiences in the media industry. This program creates a living-learning community for 16 communication majors each year. As a member of the inaugural class I am very excited to out on one of the program’s first trips.

7.26 Media Fellows 2So far we have had some great experiences meeting with industry professionals and getting a behind the scenes look at the business. We have had the chance to go to a filming of “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” and meet with Bruce Evans, Senior Vice President of Current Series at NBC. Mr. Evans was able to tell us about how he brings all of the different departments together in order to help produce successful television series.

7.26 Media Fellows 3Most recently we enjoyed a meeting with the some members of the Hollywood Radio and Television Society. We were able to talk to them one-on-one about their day-to-day responsibilities and ask questions about how they got their start in the business. One of the panelists was Jacob Fenton who represents celebrities such as Christine Baranski and Sasha Allen. It was fantastic to hear from people who started in the mailroom and now hold very high-level positions.

This trip has been an invaluable resource in giving us exposure to what our future careers will be like. We have also had the chance to tour the American Film Institute and see the sights of Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, and Sunset Blvd. We are looking forward to meeting a few more people and making the most out of our time here!

Published on July 25, 2013, by in Business, Internships, Marketing.

7.25 Alisha SignI work for Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, more specifically, The Senkler Team. They are the number one selling team in our market, with the number six sales agent in North America, Brigitte Senkler. This unbelievable team has been top 10 on Boston’s Top 20 Residential Brokers for the Suburbs each month of 2013, thus far. The team consists of a dedicated marketing director, an enthusiastic transaction coordinator and three experienced brokers.

So, what do I do? Easy, I facilitate in the buying and selling of homes, right? That’s what I thought when I first started working here in May. Little did I know the vast amount of responsibility I would have and the roles I would play in helping a sale come to fruition. I learned quickly, there is no job too big or too small for a summer intern, at least not here. From catering to potential buyers, photographing million dollar homes and fighting through stacks of paperwork, everyone does it all.

7.25 Alisha HomeThrough this blog I will take you with me as I master the art of buying and selling residential properties. Starting with earning listings, creating comparative market analysis (CMA), marketing, making an offer, and closing the deal. I’m excited to share the valuable lessons as well as the fun facts I have learned along this journey.