Editor's corner: Diving in

Miles Trump
Miles Trump, Program Manager, ThreeSixty Journalism

Four years ago, I was a timid, naive intern reporter at the St. Paul Pioneer Press, surrounded by experienced journalists and seasoned editors.

As a 2011 graduate of the University of St. Thomas, I knew I had the training to succeed in a newsroom like this. I just didn’t have the confidence yet.

I vividly remember sitting at my small newsroom desk near a window, nervously mashing on the keyboard for a story I was writing on a free art class in a Twin Cities suburb.

Seriously. A story on a free art class had me sweating bullets.

However, during my time that summer, I dove in. Seizing every opportunity that came my way, I walked out of that internship with a job at a small daily newspaper and a boatload of new skills.

And now I’m here, just more than a couple months into my role as program manager at ThreeSixty Journalism, and I’m watching high school students – I repeat, high school students – diving into journalism in many of the same ways.

This issue of ThreeSixty Magazine is a testament to our students’ willingness to not only kick the tires of journalism, but also to get behind the wheel and hit the gas.

Take Maya, for example. While interviewing the director of the Confederation of Somali Community in Minnesota in April about extremist groups’ recruitment of Somali youth, she stumbled upon a gathering of people protesting Al-Shabab’s attack on Kenya’s Garissa University College, which had taken place the day before.

So, what did Maya do? She dove in, asking questions and snapping photos of those who gathered (page 6).

Or take Mina, who asked the difficult questions and crafted a well-written piece on the complex and controversial issue of schools filtering students’ Internet access (page 13). Or Selam, who had no troubles navigating an interview with R.T. Rybak, the former mayor of Minneapolis and current executive director of Generation Next (pages 10-11). Or Sagal, who interviewed author Hamse Warfa in front of a crowd of people during an event this month (page 4).

The list goes on. Throughout the pages of this magazine, you will find a series of stories under the umbrella theme, “Teens and Technology” (pages 12-20). You will find personal essays from ThreeSixty students (pages 21-23), as well as an essay project from juniors at St. Paul Johnson High School. You will find an op-ed on internalized misogyny (page 24), a story on teen pregnancy (page 27) and a feature on a personal finance class required for teens (page 25).

Most of all, you will find that these students weren’t afraid to dive in.