Michelle James


Ride Along With a Sandy Officer

Going Beyond Test Scores

Dedication to Dance



I develop story ideas by thinking about what I see every day. Whether it’s in one of my classes or just walking around campus, I like to see what’s going on. I also like to think about what stories will matter to other students. Then, once I do the research and interviews, I figure out a certain angle on the story and what the point of the story is.

I usually start by finding sources by looking online and then finding email addresses and phone numbers. The hard part is getting in contact with those people because I will often have to keep calling until I get a response. Sometimes if people are on campus, then I can just go to their office instead of calling. Talking to people in person versus over the phone is easier because I can ask them more questions and overall get more information.

For me, the best sources are always the people who are passionate about a subject. It could be something they are personally involved with, or something that has affected them. Those are the people that like sharing information because they care about what they are talking about. Talkative people in general will be the best sources because they give so much information. With less talkative people, I have to ask many more questions to get the details that I need

I recently interviewed a principal of an elementary school for one of my articles, and she loved talking about all the great things the school is doing, and it helped that she cared so much.

One of the biggest obstacles I’ve encountered in writing stories is people not getting back to me, whether it’s an email or a phone call. When it gets close to a deadline, it can be stressful to be waiting for someone to contact you back, and sometimes I have to try to find other sources.

One of the most challenging stories was the police ride-along story I did for the class. It was an intimidating story considering everything that could happen on a police ride-along, but it went well and it was interesting to write a story about it.


IMG_9663My name is Michelle James, and I am a freshman at the University of Utah. I am majoring in Communication and International Studies.

I was born in Germany and then lived in Florida, Maryland and now I have lived in Utah for four years. My favorite thing about living in Utah is being so close to the beautiful mountains, something I didn’t have in Maryland. My hobbies include skiing, hiking, swimming, playing tennis and photography. I also love traveling and I am planning on doing a study abroad or international internship during college.

I am interested in Communication because I enjoy writing and journalism. I am currently doing an internship at The Daily Utah Chronicle, where I write for the news desk.

International Studies has interested me because I love learning about other countries. I am currently studying French and plan on continuing to learn French.

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