Back in my day

Back in 2008 I was heading into my senior year of college and the US of A was in the midst of a presidential election. As I watch and hear about the Republican National Convention happening this week, I start reminiscing about the time in college when I got to attend the Democratic National Convention.
Disclaimer: I'm not going to blog about which political party I like more because politics are personal. So, even though I went to the DNC, that doesn't mean that I'm a Democrat and just because I'm watching the RNC this week doesn't mean I'm a Republican. I do prefer one over the other but hopefully you won't be able to guess which one here.

Moving on, the '08 election was an exciting one for me because I was a young wanna be reporter all excited about politics and willing to do whatever I was told which made me the perfect intern for the Dallas Morning News at the Democratic National Convention. It was one of my best experiences of college to work at the DNC plus I got 3 hours of credit for a 2 week experience, awesome.

our place in the media pavillion

inside the hall at Pepsi Center

that's Katie Couric!

Me on the floor

rocking my khaki pants

the convention underway
At the DNC I saw lots of celebrities! Stevie Wonder, Kirsten Dunst, Ann Hathoway, Cheryl Crow, Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton, Diane Sawyer, Katie Couric, Anderson Cooper, pretty much every reporter you know, and every democrat in politics (John Kerry, Nancy Pelosi, the Bidens, the Obama fam). It was awesome seeing so many celebs in one place over the week.

As an intern for The Dallas Morning News I was assigned 3 stories from the editors that ended up on either the political blog and one ended up as a blurb in the actual paper so that was awesome. An editor would yell out, Michelle, go to the convention center, find this random person and interview them, then get back here within an hour and write us a story. It was crazy busy and the editors treated me and the other 2 interns like part of their team. They didn't baby us, they threw us in the craziness and let us work.

The craziest part of my internship was acting as an assistant to the photographers.They were under a lot of pressure especially during the big nightly speeches to get the money shot of the speaker for their paper the next morning or their website immediately. They needed to run their memory cards to the photo editor at the back of the room throughout the speeches but obviously could not leave their spot to do that. That became my job.

As a small person I was able to get through the insane crowds of people quickly without causing a ruckus. The Dallas Morning News only had so many floor passes to hand out to their reporters and an intern is sure not getting a pass to go wherever they please at a big event like the DNC. However, the editors still needed me to run the photographer's memory cards from the photographer to the editor throughout the night but without a floor pass. I was up for the challenge. My method was to walk quickly onto the floor of the convention with confidence. When I got in amongst the delegates I got on my knees and crawled through the crowd. Then had to get the attention of our photographer who was right up against the stage photographing and crawl as close to her as I could get, grab her memory cards and hand her some fresh empty ones.

It was great and I felt super helpful during each night of the convention plus I was very proud of my ability to sneak into places I wasn't authorized to be.

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