This summer, Emily Yinger ’19 has watched history in the making and helped report it to the world.
As an intern for two television stations in Pennsylvania, she has worked alongside news reporters covering breaking news, crime, politics, and more.
WGAL, an NBC affiliate, assigned her to work with a team that covered the Bill Cosby trial in Norristown, Pennsylvania. Taking part in reporting on the trial was like a dream come true for someone majoring in communication studies with a convergent journalism emphasis. “This was by far one of the greatest experiences of my life as a young reporter,” Emily said. “The news scene was very different from anything I’ve ever seen before. All of the national stations were present along with local news stations, radio stations, and newspaper journalists. You don’t see that kind of coverage when you’re working on a local story.”
Emily was in the courtroom when the jury announced that it could not reach a verdict. She helped the news crew that was one of the first to transmit the news. “I essentially was part of history,” she said. ”I remember the rush of photographers running from the front to the side of the courthouse to get every possible second of footage they could capture of Cosby and his defense team. … After the result was called, there was a press conference with the prosecution team and I had the chance to sit with other media members during that session. Being able to get that insider information was incredible, because I knew everyday people in the public were not able to access that conference.”
She also has an internship with ABC27, another station that covers the mid-state Pennsylvania area. This weekend, she was on the scene at a house that had exploded due to a gas leak. Emily helped pass crucial details to the news team in time for the 6 p.m. news cast.
Emily also has helped cover an interview with NFL head coach Bruce Arians, who was visiting his home town of York, Pennsylvania; the Harrisburg mayoral race; and the Budweiser Clydesdale horses’ visit to York City. “Key stories I loved working on were breaking news and crime stories because they were the most thrilling,” she said. Her summer work has allowed her to work with seasoned reporters, assist with news gathering, and practice skills such as editing and camerawork. She also has recorded news standups, her personal version of a story, as practice for being on camera.
Internships like these help students master the skills that they learn about in the classroom and which they will need when they start careers. More than half of Lynchburg graduates complete internships and other programs that give them experience working in the field, which helps them make career choices and make them more marketable. Emily had another journalism internship last summer at the York Dispatch, where she had several stories published.
She said that Professor Bill Noel’s classes helped prepare her to excel in the work at her internships this summer. “His Intro to Media Tech and Stage and Studio classes gave me a glimpse at editing and filming techniques that are used in the news industry,” she said.