DURING THE PAST THREE MONTHS, TWO dozen high school, college and graduate school students have been rushing around the corridors of our main offices and news bureaus. They are this year’s crop of summer interns, and, as in summers past, we’ve learned as much from them as they have from us. “They give us a better sense of what students are talking, thinking and reading about,” says PEOPLE chief of staff Sarah Brody. In return, we give them a crash course in what it takes to put out a weekly magazine.
The interns work side by side with our regular staff on both the editorial and business sides of the magazine, doing everything from reporting and fact checking to researching target markets in advertising and sales. “They’re having a blast,” says Marilyn Balamaci, PEOPLE’S chief of correspondents. “And for some, we remove the training wheels—letting them cover stories by themselves.”
In fact, for our July 31 cover story on the death of model Krissy Taylor, Marisa Salcines, 22, a University of Florida senior, was at our Miami bureau till 4 a.m., after wrangling a key interview with one of Taylor’s friends. Tonya Short, 23, a recent Hampton University graduate, says the highlight of her summer was a phone interview with Jim Belushi for Chatter. “He wound up talking about his blues band,” she says, “and he invited me to see him play!”
Other interns found there was just as much drama behind the scenes. Deena Suh, 19, a Swarthmore College junior who worked in our picture department, combed through hundreds of celebrity photos each week, looking for just the right mix of glitz and glamor for her regular assignments, Star Tracks and the Puzzler page. “I didn’t expect so much involvement,” she says. “Now I know what the job entails on a day-to-day basis.” Marilyn Anderson, 20, a Rosary College senior, toiled on the news desk, helping to sort through files from our bureaus around the world—the raw material for stories. Anderson says the experience helped her understand how team journalism works, with reporters in the field filing to writers in New York City. She compares the magazine’s late hours, particularly on closing nights, with the all-nighters she and her friends pull “when we’re crunching till dawn for exams!”
Our thanks to them and to our other interns: John Andrades, 20, a Rochester Institute of Technology senior (Imaging); Joanna Blonska, 21, a recent University of Chicago graduate (London Bureau); Nicole D. Collier, 21, a Florida A&M University senior (Specials); Kimberly Davis, 21, a Northwestern University senior (Chicago Bureau); Felicia Gordon, 19, a Harvard University junior (IN STYLE Editorial); Robert Hines, 21, a Boston College senior (Ad Sales); Avis Johnson, 18, a University of North Carolina sophomore (Edit Business Office); Meredith Kaplan, 20, a State University of Albany junior (IN STYLE Editorial); Maggie Kemsley, 21, a Hartwick College senior (IN STYLE Marketing); Kavita Menon, 22, a recent Columbia University graduate (Copy Desk); Shannon Nobles, 19, a Connecticut College sophomore (Public Affairs); Doris Ramseur, 26, an MBA candidate at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business (Business Office); Jessica Ruthizer, 17, a Chapin School senior (Letters); Geri Sahn, 21, a University of Massachusetts senior (Reporter); Gina Scialla, 27, an MBA candidate at the Harvard Business School (Business Office); Ericka Souter, 20, a Georgetown University junior (Washington Bureau); Tamara Stanley, 20, a Northwestern University junior (L.A. Bureau); Andrea Williams, 18, a Yale University sophomore (Letters); Shanna Williams, 17, a St. Pius V High School senior (Marketing); and Shaneequa Wright, 20, a Penn State senior (Business Office).