MACON – Mercer University rising senior Avery Braxton was recently selected to receive a Knight CUNYJ Summer Internship to travel to New York City in June and July and participate in an all-expense paid journalism training and internship program.
The program was established in 2015 by the City University of New York (CUNY) Graduate School of Journalism, with generous support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, to address under-representation in U.S. newsrooms by helping build a stronger pipeline of academically excellent, digitally trained minority journalists.
Participants will receive classroom training from CUNY faculty and participate in a seven-week internship at a news outlet in the city. At the end of the summer, the top five interns are offered tuition-free enrollment to one of the Master of Arts programs in the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.
“I am extremely honored and humbled to represent Mercer and the Center for Collaborative Journalism (CCJ) at CUNYJ in New York,” said Braxton, who will be interning at Spectrum's NY1 television station covering the city's five boroughs.
“It is a culmination of all the hard work I've done as well as the amazing preparation I've received from the CCJ and members of our national advisory board. I hope to walk away with a better knowledge of what it takes to be a reporter in a big city, an even greater passion for the career field I've come to love and the chance to receive a master's degree for free from CUNY's graduate journalism program.”
Braxton, from Peachtree City, is a journalism major with a minor in media studies. As a student, he has served as an intern at 41NBC/WMGT and The Telegraph in Macon. He also received an NPR Next Generation Radio Fellowship for which he covered grassroots organization #ATLisReady and its fight to combat gentrification and police violence in Atlanta.
Additionally, Braxton works for Mercer's ESPN3 production team as a graphic operator, student producer and the sole student sideline reporter for home athletics broadcasts. He participated in the University's first student-produced football broadcast for ESPN3, as well as the first two linear broadcasts for Fox Sports South. He also writes for Mercer's student newspaper, The Cluster, primarily covering sports and news.
Braxton has been named a John M. Couric Fellow by the CCJ for two consecutive years. Next year, he will participate in the Georgia News Lab, a collaborative effort among Georgia universities, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and WSB-TV to train young investigative reporters, produce high-quality public service news stories and bring added diversity to newsrooms.
He also serves as Keeper of Records for the Theta Pi chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc. at Mercer and as a member of Point B.L.A.N.K., the University's spoken word collective.
Upon graduation next spring, Braxton aspires to remain in Macon as a television reporter, with a long-term goal of becoming an anchor in a major market or a correspondent for a national news network.
For more information on the Knight CUNYJ Summer Internship, visit www.journalism.cuny.edu/academics/knight-cunyj-diversity.
About the Center for Collaborative Journalism
The Center for Collaborative Journalism (CCJ) is a unique partnership between Mercer University, The Telegraph and Georgia Public Broadcasting, with generous support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and The Peyton Anderson Foundation. The Center's groundbreaking collaboration has students, faculty and veteran journalists working together in a joint newsroom. Learning in a “teaching hospital” model, students engage the community using the latest digital tools and leave with a strong portfolio of published work.