Looking back at all the highs and lows of the internship that I had over the summer makes me feel a mix of many different emotions. It was an experience that challenged me so much. It revealed a lot of things about myself and about the people I was with. It made me realize several things about the newspaper industry, and it made me fall in love with the idea of being in a different city alone.
I remember the first day of my first assignment, my heart was beating so fast that I thought the people around me could hear it too. I was assigned to cover a press conference in the Basilica del Sto. Niño. My senior reporter wasn’t there yet so I spent a few hours in the Pilgrimage Center, trying to calm myself down. There were so many scary scenarios playing in my head. I kept thinking, “What if I’ll get lost? What if someone will just grab me and take all my stuff right now? Who would people contact if something really bad happens to me?” over and over again. I was freaking out and there was no one to talk to or to help me unload the stress that I was feeling.
So I prayed. I told myself that everything is going to be fine, that I will be able to get through that day, and that I am strong. That mantra has helped me survived the following days.
I got lost a lot of times, but that made me get out of my shell and ask for people’s help. I got nervous on interviewing prominent politicians, government officials, business owners, and professionals whether personally or through the phone, but I learned to set that fear aside and speak up. I learned to become more street-smart and resourceful.
Some of the tasks that I was assigned to was like a slap from reality. I’ve visited a jail and saw the inmates’ living conditions. I’ve heard a grandfather’s cry for justice for his granddaughter. I’ve seen children deviate from dangerous activities and focused on developing themselves through sports. These were humbling and heart-touching experiences that helped me see what the world world really is.
Cebu is an incredibly beautiful island. I’ve seen the city at its worst and I’ve seen it at its ultimate best. Through all the fortunate and unfortunate things I got to deal with each day, I still find myself sighing and thinking, “Cebu you’re making me fall in love with you everyday.”
The city is rich with history and culture despite its modernness. It has its charm that I can’t shake off. There’s something about this city that makes me feel the urge to go back.
To become a journalist really takes a lot of courage, patience, determination, and passion. During the six weeks, I pushed myself to become more courageous, patient, determined, and passionate to do my tasks. I honestly didn’t know I had that strength in me until I went through all those things.
The internship helped me grow, and it’s an experience I wouldn’t trade for anything else.