The Los Angeles Chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association

Meet our 2017 Summer Interns

Titus Wu
Pasadena Star-News
Titus Wu is from Arcadia, Calif., in the San Gabriel Valley. He is an incoming sophomore at the University of Missouri, Columbia, with a major in journalism. He currently writes sports for the college’s student newspaper and is an assistant news director for the college’s student radio station.  Wu plans to pursue print and digital journalism, with a dream of writing many long-form features about important social issues.
The real newsroom: “My first professional experience in journalism was a valuable one, as I got to see an actual newsroom setting beyond student media. Interacting with community members, getting into confrontations with government officials and witnessing buyouts gave me a good, hard look into what being a journalist means. This internship has greatly increased my appreciation for local journalism.”
Jeong Park
Orange County Register
Jeong Park graduated in June from UCLA. He worked as an assistant news editor and a managing editor for the Daily Bruin, the UCLA’s student newspaper. He covered beats such as the University of California and national higher education policies. Park hopes to pursue an ever elusive career in print and data journalism to tell stories that make people care. 

Journalism is here to stay – “I have learned so much from my time at the Register, from pestering sources to writing on quick deadline. The Register put me to work right away and gave me the freedom to pursue stories I wanted to write — such as a story on homelessness in Garden Grove’s Korean community. Seeing dozens of editors and writers work tirelessly throughout day and night has also reminded me that no matter what critics say about the industry, local journalism is here to stay.”


My story of survival as a DACA journalist


This is where I try to sell you on the merits of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, which President Donald Trump is expected to end.

But you’ve probably made up your mind already.

So, instead, let me tell you a bit about myself.

Journalism intern Jeong Park in the newsroom at the Orange County Register Anaheim on Friday, September 1, 2017. Park, 23, a Korean immigrant and a DACA recipient who came to the United States when he was 11-years-old. Park graduated from UCLA with a political science major. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)
Journalism intern Jeong Park in the newsroom at the Orange County Register Anaheim on Friday, September 1, 2017. Park, 23, a Korean immigrant and a DACA recipient who came to the United States when he was 11-years-old. Park graduated from UCLA with a political science major. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

I am an undocumented (or DACA-mented) Korean immigrant who came stateside when I was 11. My mother swears I wanted to come here, but I remember crying a lot in an airplane.

I am also an aspiring journalist. I have heard numerous cries to “get out while you are young,” but journalism has been way too fun and exciting. There aren’t that many jobs that allow you to research ‘butt dart.’

I don’t want to be a story. My job is to tell the stories of others.

So, why am I writing this?

Well, today is the last day of my internship at the Register, so it’s not as if I have much to do.

But I also remember reading Jose Antonio Vargas’ New York Times Magazine story about himself as an undocumented journalist. And I find Ruben Vives’ bylines in the LA Times, another former undocumented immigrant.

I remember how powerful their bylines and stories have been for me. Growing up in California, I did not feel as afraid as others in sharing my identity, but those bylines and stories were comforting. The message I heard was that I, too, could tell stories.

So it’s my turn to let people know that this path is possible.

My story can perhaps be one of those cookie cutter stories; of someone who has done everything I can to succeed only to have it taken away because of immigration status.

But my story isn’t a story of heartbreak, with or without DACA.

Sure, I might go through some unexpected turns and twists over the next couple years or so. I might have to find a (gulp) non-journalism job to tide me over.

But just about a month ago, when Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and nine other attorney generals threatened the federal government to end DACA, Gloria Gaynor’s “I Will Survive” came on the radio. And I listened.

“At first, I was afraid, I was petrified,” Gaynor sang. “Oh, no, not I, I will survive / Long as I know how to love, I know I’ll stay alive / I’ve got my life to live, and all my love to give.”

One more thing:

I’m not a “dreamer.” Hundreds of thousands of people like me have not only dreamed, but accomplished. And that’s going to continue, no matter what the current administration decides.

The question is where.



Meghan Coyle
KCRW 89.9 FM
Meghan is a recent graduate of USC Annenberg’s School for Communication and Journalism, where she served as the Online Managing Editor of The Daily Trojan and a radio producer for Annenberg Media. Her radio show, “From Where We Are,” is the 2016 National Winner for Best All-Around Radio Newscast in the SPJ Mark of Excellence Awards. Meghan has also been published in The Washington Post and worked for NBC Sports on the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics. She previously interned for “To The Point” at KCRW. This SoCal transplant grew up in Alexandria, VA. This summer, she also has a sweet gig working at the Museum of Ice Cream.
One day’s work: “I never knew how much you could accomplish in one day until I joined the lean and nimble “All Things Considered” team at KCRW. We had a single producer, host, and board operator putting together the newscasts that accompany people on their way home from work everyday. I learned to edit audio faster, multi-task constantly, and write for conversation. It was a huge challenge, but by the end of the summer, I was both on the air and able to fill-in as the producer on the show.”

Applications closed – Call for applications: 2017 summer reporting internships 

How do you get a job in journalism? Get journalism experience. Apply now for one of our summer internships.

We are excited to announce that we’re sponsoring three summer reporting internships this year.

Each intern will be paid $4,000 for approximately 10 weeks of full-time workInterns will be matched with a mentor and will receive a free AAJA-LA membership. Applicants must be enrolled in an accredited college or university or have graduated within the last six months. 

Application deadline: April 7

The Orange County Register is seeking a talented, dedicated intern for its local news desk. The intern will cover general assignment and breaking news as well as Little Saigon and other Asian communities.

Preference will be given to applicants invested in or interested in the Vietnamese or other Asian communities and who have ties to Southern California.

Applicants should have experience in news or feature writing. Send a cover letter, resume, three writing samples and at least two references to Steve Green, Assistant Managing Editor/Operations,, by end of day Friday, April 7.

KCRW 89.9 FM 
Application deadline: April 28

AAJA-LA is sponsoring a summer internship at KCRW 89.9 FM in Santa Monica.

The intern will work on All Things Considered with afternoon news producer Ben Gottlieb, developing skills such as: forming a well-focused story, researching and fact-checking, writing for broadcast news and using audio equipment/editing software. The intern may also be able to pitch and produce his/her own stories.

The pay is $4,000 for 10 weeks of full-time work, starting at the beginning of June. The All Things Considered team begins work at 1 p.m. and finishes at about 7 p.m.

Interns will be matched with a mentor and will receive a free AAJA-LA membership. Applicants must be enrolled in an accredited college or university or have graduated within the last six months. Preference will be given to applicants whose interests or background align with AAJA-LA’s mission (

Send cover letter, resume and work samples to Michelle Escobar,, with the subject line “AAJA Internship — (Your Name),” by April 28.

*Update: The application for this internship has passed.*

The San Gabriel Valley includes some of Southern California’s most vibrant Asian immigrant communities. The intern’s primary responsibility will be to write about trends and issues in those communities, though the internship may include some general assignment work. Fluency in an Asian language is a plus but not required.

Deadline is March 31. Send cover letter, resume and clips to Brian Harr, Senior

Good luck! 


Meet our 2016 Summer Interns

Matthew Ormseth
Orange County Register

Interning at the Register taught me to be more comprehensive in my reporting. I learned to identify stakeholders — all the people affected by the issues at the heart of a story — and work their perspectives into a 3-D narrative that looks at those issues from different vantage points. And I learned to use data to support, challenge and qualify those perspectives.

I had mentors, both at the Register and through AAJA, who challenged me to be more thorough as a reporter and more accurate as a writer. After my 10 weeks at the Register, I know how difficult a job reporting can be. But I feel more confident and better equipped to do that job.

Matthew Ormseth was an AAJA-LA intern at The Orange County Register, where he covered university news. He is a senior English major at Cornell University, where he also writes for the school paper, The Cornell Daily Sun. He is a columnist for the Pacific Citizen and the Rafu Shimpo, and enjoys listening to and producing hip hop in his free time.

Below are a few of his stories from this summer:


Khoa Lai
Nguoi Viet Daily News

I’ve learned that as journalists, we are the gatekeepers of information to the community. A journalist should not frame a story and guide the readers to think in a certain way… We serve as a guide, to help the public draw conclusions on its own.

Khoa Lai was an AAJA-LA intern at Nguoi Viet Daily News, the oldest and largest Vietnamese-language publication in the U.S. and based in Orange County, Calif. He is a journalism major at California State University, Long Beach, who has written for the Daily49er, the campus newspaper. He expects to graduate in December. His experience includes stints as an intern at Remarq Inc., a boutique communications firm in West Los Angeles where he worked on the SoCal Honda and Anaheim GardenWalk campaigns; and as an intern at the Caravelle Saigon Hotel, an international five-star hotel in Vietnam where he used qualitative and quantitative research for monthly marketing campaigns and wrote press releases that focused on boosting search engine optimization.

Below are some samples of his stories reported or translated:


Marina Peña
Pasadena Star-News

Over the course of my internship, I acquired a plethora of essential journalism skills. I learned how to strike a balance between preparation and improvisation. I learned a great deal of basic communication skills, just from overhearing the phone interviews of other reporters. All the while, my take on the world of journalism evolved. Working at the Pasadena Star-News, I was able to observe first-hand the business side of the entire craft,” Peña said.

Without my internship this summer, I would not have been able to learn all of these important lessons. For that, I am grateful to AAJA and the Pasadena Star-News.

Marina Peña was an AAJA-LA intern at the Pasadena Star-News, where she covered Asian communities. A native of Argentina, she is a junior at the University of Southern California, majoring in print and digital journalism and serving as a columnist for USC Annenberg Media. She enjoys strawberries, long walks and writing about social issues.

A sample of her work:


Asian American Journalists Association. Los Angeles Chapter. Established 1981.