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Olivia Pruitt

Longwood Senior interns for Chatham newspaper

Olivia Pruitt Longwood Senior Olivia Pruitt

Longwood University senior Olivia Pruitt spent her final collegiate winter break in a valuable internship with her hometown newspaper, the Chatham Star-Tribune.

For four weeks, Pruitt got a taste of the fast-paced atmosphere of a professional newsroom. "I started out shadowing the editor-in-chief, Tim Davis," said Pruitt. Then I did some editing for him so he could see my abilities, and that helped because editing can improve your own writing."

Pruitt pitched numerous story ideas and wrote four articles for the newspaper, including one that featured her former high school’s robotics team. Landing a byline in the newspaper got her excited about a potential career in journalism, she said.

Pruitt originally came to Longwood to major in Spanish but had developed an interest in journalism as editor of her high school newspaper. After her first semester, Pruitt changed her major to English. "When I came to Longwood I was a bit uncertain, but the experience I had at the newspaper showed me that I really like journalism," she said.

"Olivia is the kind of person who can do anything she wants to," said Dr. Derek Taylor, professor of English, who is Pruitt’s adviser. "Then she tried something new, and the things that she’s learning here at Longwood enabled her to succeed in this real-world venue. It epitomizes what I want students to get out of an internship."