Thursday marks my last day interning with The Frontier.

When I began at The Frontier in late May, I honestly did not know what to expect: It was less than 30 days after they had announced the company’s launch. When I told my peers where I was working this summer they would reply: “The what?” Or: “With who?”

Unlike many other journalism students attending DePauw University, I was not going to be working for a major metro paper or news organization. Instead, I was going to be working for a brand-new digital media website based in Tulsa.

It was difficult returning to the city and catching up with local news after finishing my sophomore semester. However, not many DePauw summer interns can say they worked closely, or even a desk length away from award winning journalists, including two Pulitzer Prize finalists – Cary Aspinwall and Ziva Branstetter. Even though I did not experience the atmosphere of a traditional newsroom this summer, I did learn a lot about the business behind publishing and competing with other news sources.

During my time at The Frontier, I wasn’t “just the intern.” OK, maybe occasionally I was simply “the intern” to my deskmate, Dylan Goforth. However, I introduced him to Nutella — so I basically changed his life for the better.

Every day on the job I was always treated with the utmost respect. Even on his busiest days, senior staff writer Kevin Canfield, would always ask how I was doing and how things were going.

Throughout the summer, I sat in on storyboard and web design meetings where my opinion was never overlooked. I was given the opportunity to write my own clips and work closely with The Frontier team. Although every internship comes with grunt work, I did a lot more than create multiple Excel spreadsheets. I was given several outstanding opportunities: being featured on a podcast, traveling to the state Capitol where I met Sister Helen Prejean and even witnessing the beginning of a grand jury trial.

I want to thank The Frontier staff and Publisher, Bobby Lorton, for having me join their team this summer. How cool is it that I get to say I was The Frontier’s first intern? Pretty sweet. I not only witnessed the new digital media site launch, but I helped make it happen.

I also want to thank the Kilgore Scholarship Fund. Without the help of the Kilgore scholarship and my academic advisors, I would not have been able to make this opportunity possible. The Kilgore scholarship helps fund internships for aspiring journalism students attending DePauw University.

Although I am sad to leave The Frontier, I am excited to head back to DePauw and get into my fall semester groove. I am ecstatic to take the knowledge and experience I have gained from interning at The Frontier back to The DePauw newsroom.