Mauli Desai, Nathan Harris and McGee Nall are the winners of the 2017 Best Summer Stories contest.

Three journalism students awarded for ‘Best Summer Stories’

For standout reporting during their summer internships, three Grady College journalism students have been named winners of the 2017 “Best Summer Stories” contest.

Mauli Desai, Nathan Harris and McGee Nall each will be awarded a $250 prize.

“Grady Journalism students really shine during their summer internships,” said Janice Hume, head of the Department of Journalism. “Their bosses rave about their talent, smarts and work ethic. Mauli, McGee and Nathan did exemplary work and came out on top in a tough competition this year. We are proud of them.”

Desai spent the summer at The UB Post newspaper in Mongolia. She authored pieces on topics ranging from her experience with camel riding in the Gobi Desert to highlights of the capital city of Ulaanbaatar to a profile piece on a female Mongolian entrepreneur.

“The ability to write about a country, the people, the culture and their way of life is the greatest part about being a journalist,” Desai said. “It was such a thrilling and humbling experience. Also, this was a great way to learn about newsrooms, storytelling and journalism practices across the world.”

Harris covered Henry County for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, reporting on issues such as a debate over a Confederate Flag, a school board rescinding an offer to a superintendent candidate and an examination of the new campus carry law using data journalism.

“Preparing to cover the county, I harked back to what I’ve learned from Grady classes about news gathering and government coverage,” said Harris. “I started by attending county commissioner and city council meetings to get a sense of what was happening in the county. I subscribed to small local papers and checked them regularly, subscribed to social media accounts and established contacts with city and county officials.

“I really enjoyed my internship at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, taking my skills from Grady and writing for a large metropolitan audience,” he added. “It was exciting, stressful and a bit scary, but thanks to Grady, I felt prepared.”

Writing for Runner’s World Magazine in Emmaus, Pennsylvania., Nall covered many sides of the sport. One of her stories documented the journey of an athlete who competed in the Ironman after recovering from a brain injury.

“Hearing inspiring tales of endurance and perseverance, especially through a sport I love so much, was an unforgettable experience,” Nall said. “My internship not only impacted me as a journalist, but as a person.”

This is the third year that the Journalism Department has held the contest.

Date: October 16, 2017
Author:  Stephanie Moreno,
Contact:  Janice Hume,