Charlotte Norsworthy stands in the lobby of the NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C. Photo: Alexis Arnold
Charlotte Norsworthy stands in the lobby of the NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C. Photo: Alexis Arnold

Grady Intern Diaries: Charlotte Norsworthy

This is part of a series where we asked Grady College students to describe their internship experiences during the summer.

For others in the series, please see:

Connor Foarde, The Washington Times

Christopher Mays, Citi

Stanley D. Miller III, CNN

Kendall Lake, New America’s Open Technology Institute

Brittany Paris, Dateline NBC

Maxime Tamsett, CNN

Name: Charlotte Norsworthy
Major: Journalism and Political Science
Title of Internship: Business Desk Intern
Company and company website: NPR
Location: Washington, D.C.

GC: Briefly describe your internship and responsibilities.

Charlotte Norsworthy operates a sound booth in NPR's newsroom. Photo: Alexis Arnold
Charlotte Norsworthy operates a sound booth in NPR’s newsroom. Photo: Alexis Arnold

C.N.: I work on the business desk at NPR which works to support and produce content for radio, podcasts and digital. The tasks of the job change each day, which keeps things exciting! One day I will be reporting on the state of the financial markets, another day I will be rushing to the courtroom to hear an important decision. Most days, I assist reporters and editors in researching, sourcing and completing their pieces.

GC: What is the biggest challenge you faced during your internship?
C.N.: The biggest challenge I’ve faced is learning how to pitch a story for a national audience. Most of my experience prior to this internship included focusing coverage on a very specific audience. Here, that audience includes everyone. Therefore, coming up with story pitches that will appeal to a broad range of folks has been harder than anticipated! Luckily, my editors have worked with me to help fine-tune my pitches.

GC: What was the best part about your summer internship?
C.N.: The best part about my summer internship is getting to be in the hustle and bustle of such great journalism. News never rests and neither does the NPR newsroom, and it has been so exciting and humbling to be a part of it!

GC: What is the most memorable experience you had during your internship?
C.N.: I have to say two – I just have to! The first most memorable experience of my internship thus far has been getting to hunker down at the D.C. district courthouse anticipating the AT&T/Time Warner merger decision. I learned so much about covering courts and the patience it requires. It has motivated me to try and shadow other reporters out in the field.

The second has been attending Tiny Desk concerts. I have gotten to see some of my favorite artists, such as Dave Matthews and Yo-Yo Ma, but also discover some new artists such as Rev. Sekou and Fred Yonnet!

GC: What is the most valuable lesson or skill you learned during your internship?
C.N.: The most valuable lesson I have learned is to go with the flow. As I mentioned earlier, each day at my internship brings something different, and I have learned to be willing to turn over the reigns! Being flexible and willing to do any and everything has truly paid off, and it has allowed me to have some incredible experiences.

GC: What advice would you give to a student looking for an internship?
C.N.: My advice would be to really let your passion for your position shine through the work you’ve completed up to this point. If you are applying for NPR, for example, talk less about how much you listen to NPR and more about how your skills can be a valuable asset to the team you’re applying to. Talk about your experience, share stories and be genuine.

GC: What part of your Grady education did you find most valuable during your internship?
C.N.: Overall, my education at Grady has trained me to have a go-getter and adaptable attitude to any project or position I am afforded. If I have to learn a new piece of software, cover a subject I am unfamiliar with or walk up to a stranger, Grady has prepared me for all of it. My position, working at the business desk, has drawn upon specific classes that I have taken with my Grady program, such as Dr. Keith Herndon’s Business Journalism class, Dr. William E. Lee’s Communication Law class and the late Dr. Barry Hollander’s Information Gathering class. Those three classes have helped me more than I ever expected, and I am truly grateful to Grady for continuing to support this range in curriculum.

GC: How did your internship help confirm your desired career path or make you re-evaluate what you want to do in the future?
C.N.: This internship furthered my knowledge of the national and international news markets, but it has also showed me how these national organizations must work to support local markets. Working here has shown me how crucial all levels of news production are to better inform our society. Therefore, this organization has shown me that I would love to eventually return to national organizations, such as NPR, to continue to work on news support strategies. Also, NPR has its own Standards & Practices editor named Mark Memmott. He works within the newsroom to ensure NPR’s journalism is held up to a high-quality standard. To me, he has such a crucial position, and I would love to eventually steal his job! Haha!

GC: How will your summer internship affect the way you approach the rest of your time at UGA?
C.N.: This internship will allow me to go back to Athens and approach my senior year with force! I hope to take what I’ve learned and apply it to the Cox Institute’s own podcast, The Lead, and take it to new heights.

GC: When you look back on your internship 10 years from now, what part of your summer internship do you expect to be most thankful for?
C.N.: I expect to be most thankful for the people I’ve met. NPR has such a diverse newsroom, and I hope to be able to keep in touch with those that I’ve worked with, met and grown close to, such as those in my internship class. Thanks for everything, NPR!

Date: June 25, 2018

Editor:  Ivy Smith,