Arriving with my approved pitch on Monday, I entered with little but assumed expectations. This was going to incur a demanding schedule with a tight turnaround, and I can rely on my experience as an NPR intern. I was familiar with the fundamentals of audio and worked for a public radio organization; how hard would undertaking this story be?

By mid-afternoon Wednesday, I can assure you it has been a humbling experience. Getting to know my subject and this issue through the lens of audio conjured a different way to view storytelling, interpretation of their answers and crafting a story faithful to their account on an issue. In this case, it was about activism, his efforts amid the pandemic and his current endeavor of directly assisting unsheltered people in my background, Salt Lake City. By working on a non-narrative story, I profoundly learned audio allows us to access a sense of one’s view of the world, its tension with it and their motivations to respond to it through action.

Going out on the field on three different occasions with equipment I have barely operated before shaped my ability to adapt, problem solve and carry through pitfalls. It was both fascinating and frustrating to view audio journalism’s proximity to art and science through audio editing and capturing this sound while maintaining the norms of a reported story. 

This week was simultaneously the longest and yet shortest I’ve experienced. I am deeply grateful for the consistent feedback given to me by those facilitating my training and process. Obviously, my mentor, Sam, has been invaluable during this entire week, and I look forward to his professional ascent in the near future if it hasn’t already happened. Because of this story, I am interested in taking this issue to an outlet and examining this issue from the pole of politics. Through copious cups of coffee, early mornings and late nights, I am proud of reporting a multimedia story for the first time with the help of talented individuals.