This podcast pilot I pitched about unique gravestones and the human stories they hide now serves as a model for alternative storytelling methods in a college journalism textbook.
I had once considered seeking a degree in law after graduating with my bachelor's degree, but I felt more fulfilled reporting. Still, I've always been an avid reader of Supreme Court reporters like The Washington Post's Robert Barnes. When I had the chance to cover a few Supreme Court hearings of my own, I lept at the chance.
In the wake of a deadly mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio, my public affairs reporting class was tasked with introducing the political element of the story without overlooking the raw, human emotion. By staking out the press gallery for more than a week, I learned when the victims of that violence would come to Capitol Hill — a perfect opportunity to marry the two reporting concepts.
Pursuing my master's degree at American University, situated in the heart of our nation's capital, I had the opportunity to test my skills as a political reporter. This story attempts to tell a compelling political narrative without devolving into a he-said-she-said debate.
I have long believed that the meeting or hearing a reporter covers is rarely the story in and of itself. Rather, it takes a keen eye and a nose for news to derive what the story behind the meeting or hearing really is. This example of political reporting I wrote while studying at American University does just that.