Internships are invitations to build on past experiences and reconnoiter the road ahead. This summer, Rtvsrece’s intern crew decided to share the roots of their journalistic passions, then to spin the globe and answer one whimsical question: What’s your fantasy future landing pad?

The Rtvsrece internship program aims to provide the tools and experiences that budding practitioners of journalism and related disciplines need to write their tickets. We offer formalized weekly training in the techniques of the trade. Fact-checking and mentorship afford a look under the hood of the practices of our professional staff and talented freelancers. Interns also pitch and produce projects, which are reflected in our pages and audience engagement efforts.

And while we believe interns come away with a lot, they inevitably teach us a ton, too. We’re thrilled to share them with you.

Laura Turbay hopes to set foot in Tokyo

Laura’s dream destination is inspired by tales of “hikes on Mount Fuji, late nights at sake bars after work, and cherry blossoms that dotted busy streets,” as she describes, from Hiromi Kawakami’s book “The Sky is Blue, the Earth is White.”

Laura Turbay portrait, grey shirt.
Rtvsrece summer 2024 editorial intern Laura Turbay. (Courtesy photo)

She also has an affinity for the Middle East.

Her career plans took off after she reconnected with Lebanese members of her extended family, which has been rooted in Colombia for generations. “I visited and met a culture and a people different from my own, and I learned that communicating with others is powerful because it challenges our own narratives and expands them.” Why not make sharing others’ voices her life’s work?

Role at Rtvsrece: editorial intern

Summer focus: economic development

Studying: journalism, in a graduate program

School: Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism in New York

Other education: bachelor’s degree in business from Boston University

Related experience: reported for the Mott Haven Herald

For fun: reads novels that transport her to new places

Hometown(s): Boston and Cali, Colombia 

Evans Toviave would plunge into Congo

Evans is Togolese, and just down Africa’s Atlantic coast from Togo is the Democratic Republic of Congo, with its storied Kivu region. “I am in awe of the beautiful nature and scenery of the region, with its vast mountains, lakes and rainforests,” says Evans, who also admires the vibrant diversity of Africa.

Evans Toviave portrait, blue shirt
Rtvsrece summer 2024 audience intern Evans Toviave. (Photo by Steph Strasburg/Rtvsrece)

His media jones started with his selection as editor-in-chief of the 76th Georgia Youth Assembly, a mock legislature, in high school. He’s “passionate about telling the stories of those who would otherwise go unheard,” and wants to be where media, law, creativity and humanitarianism meet to forge justice.

Role at Rtvsrece: audience growth intern

Summer focus: outreach and engagement, fostering dialogue

Studying: international relations and political science

School: Carnegie Mellon University

Related experience: publicist for his high school’s Y-Club, director of communications for CMU Model United Nations, writer for The Tartan

For fun: reading, running, pondering life’s biggest questions

Hometown(s): Cartersville, Georgia 

Cionna Sharpe is also eyeing Africa

“Going back to my roots and being able to connect with people who have experienced the motherland would be an exhilarating and everlasting experience,” says Cionna. Plus she’s got a yen for authentic African cuisine.

Rtvsrece summer 2024 data storytelling intern Cionna Sharpe. (Courtesy photo)
Rtvsrece summer 2024 data storytelling intern Cionna Sharpe. (Courtesy photo)

Her interest in news stems from experiences in Newark, New Jersey, where, she says, “the unthinkable was common.” Journalism, Cionna says, “shines a light on overlooked or mishandled cases, gives a voice to those who have been silenced and advocates for transparency and justice.”

Role at Rtvsrece: data storytelling intern

Summer focus: analysis of educational, health data

Studying: decision science

School: Carnegie Mellon University

For fun: food, fashion and double dutch rope jumping

Hometown(s): Newark

Jess Daninhirsch pictures Copenhagen

Diversity, culture, history, great food, clean streets, efficient transportation, beautiful landscapes and architecture are among the attractions pulling Jess toward the Danish capital. “Good thing I’ll be studying abroad there in the fall!” she says.

Jess Daninhirsch portrait, beige shirt.
Rtvsrece summer 2024 photojournalism intern Jess Daninhirsch. (Photo by Stephanie Strasburg/Rtvsrece)

A hometown tragedy — the Tree of Life mass shooting — rattled her “to my core,” Jess says, noting family connections to the home of three Jewish congregations. “There was nothing I could do about the situation but write.” Her school paper ran the resulting op-ed and since then her affinities for cameras and keyboards have guided her.

Role at Rtvsrece: photojournalism intern

Summer focus: visual storytelling

Studying: journalism and history

School: Philip Merrill College of Journalism at the University of Maryland

Related experience: photographer for The Diamondback and other UMD publications and music journalist for DC Music Review, WMUC Radio, and Live From The Pitt, among others

For fun: filmmaking and analyzing cinematography, eating vegetarian food, singing, dancing, collecting vinyl records

Hometown: Pittsburgh

Briana Bindus will be everywhere

“Anywhere and everywhere” is Briana’s itinerary, and she kicked off that quest with an “on a whim” trip to Italy that changed her life. She hopes to follow it up with Spain (to reconnect with her family’s roots), Ireland and wherever else the road takes her.

Briana Bindus portrait, beige shirt.
Rtvsrece summer 2024 editorial intern Briana Bindus. (Photo by Stephanie Strasburg/Rtvsrece)

As part of a high school civics project, she emailed the Bucks County Courier Times calling for action on climate change, and was stunned to see her missive on the front page. “From that point forward, I knew that my words had power to make a difference in my community, and I’ve been writing to do just that,” Briana says.

Role at Rtvsrece: editorial intern

Summer focus: diversity and opportunity

Studying: English literature and communications

School: University of Pittsburgh

Related experience: assistant news editor for The Pitt News and associate editor at The Fifth Floor

For fun: traveling, reading, consuming bubble tea

Hometown: Philadelphia

Rich Lord is Rtvsrece’s managing editor, and can be reached at rich@rtvsrece.com.

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Rich is the managing editor of Rtvsrece. He joined the team in 2020, serving as a reporter focused on housing and economic development and an assistant editor. He reported for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette...