For senior Ashley Young, her last semester of college will not be spent running between classes, buying textbooks, completing exams, or rushing to complete her assignments.
In fact, for Young, the "campus" for her last semester of undergraduate work will be the streets of Manhattan, N.Y. A long way from her hometown of Hurricane, or from her "Home Among the Hills" right in Buckhannon,
Young will be spending the final 15 weeks of her college career as an intern at Seventeen magazine.
Young, a public relations major and art minor, has spent her college days preparing for something like this. She was the editor-in-chief of the Pharos and the founder and editor-in-chief of Her Campus WVWC, which launched January 2013. A long-time reader of Seventeen, Young followed the magazine's internship dates and applied weeks before each deadline, with her final application paving the way to the position.
"I was asked to complete a strenuous edit test that also involved pitching many story ideas," recalls Young. "A week after I submitted my edit test, Seventeen's features editor contacted me for a phone interview. It went so well that I landed the internship."
As a features intern, Young will work with the editorial department of the magazine. She will be responsible for many duties, including helping pitch ideas for the different sections of the magazine, independently conducting primary research in response to the editors' story ideas, reading and responding to reader mail and letters and educating the current staff on what Seventeen readers want to see more or less of in the issues, helping editors gather quotes from ordinary people for potential story ideas, and transcribing interviews to help Seventeen editors with the unique writing process.
Young recognizes that her internship, which begins Jan. 20, was possible in part due to the experiences she has had on campus. Noting that her position of editor-in-chief of two campus publications had prepared her mentally and skillfully for the internship, Young's relationship with a certain faculty member sparked her interest in this field.
"I would not have been ready to assume the positions as editor-in-chief without the knowledge from Pete Galarneau's News Media Writing class," commented Young. "That is where I learned about the inverted pyramid writing style, attributing quotes, and more. That class is what sparked my love for publishing. Without Professor Galarneau's help, along with help from other professors in the communication department, I would not have been prepared to take this next step in my education. I am grateful for the gifts Wesleyan has given me."
Upon completion of her internship, Young will return to West Virginia Wesleyan College to graduate on May 10.
Housed in the School of Social and Behavioral Science, the Communication Department at West Virginia Wesleyan College offers three fields of study: Communication Studies, Media Studies, and Public Relations.
West Virginia Wesleyan is a private, four-year residential liberal arts college in Buckhannon. WVWC was founded in 1890 and has earned distinctions as one of the nation's best colleges by national publications, including The Princeton Review.
The college is closely affiliated with the United Methodist Church and offers its students vast educational experiences and encourages good citizenship and community service. Students at West Virginia Wesleyan College are engaged in 44 majors and 34 minors; graduate programs in athletic training, business administration, education, English writing, and nursing; 20 NCAA Division II sports teams; 10 performing arts groups; and more than 70 organizations.