Stories from intrepid reporters attending the Illinois Press Foundation Journalism Workshop at Eastern Illinois University
By Kristyna Kresic
Sitting in the stands, the fans at Warren Township High School would think senior Katlyn Campbell was just an ordinary lacrosse player, but no one, not even Campbell, knew the inspiration she would get from Jeremy Scahill, an investigative journalist for The Nation magazine.
After watching his movie “Dirty Wars” in creative writing class her junior year, Campbell and her classmates had the opportunity to listen to a presentation by Scahill about his journey of being a journalist, visiting places like Afghanistan, Somalia and Yemen, writing his own book, “Dirty Wars: The World Is a Battlefield,”and also having it turned into a documentary film. During the interview, Scahill touched on the reasons why he chose to go into journalism and do what he does. During his speech, Campbell realized that Scahill was amorous about his job.
“His passion for journalism made me want to discover what I could accomplish with journalism and if I could be passionate about it too,” said Campbell.
Subsequently, Campbell tried to get more and more involved in journalism each day after Scahill left. Signing up for a journalism camp at Eastern Illinois University was the first thing on her list. After sending in two sample pieces and a 500-word essay, Campbell waited to hear if she got into the camp. A few weeks later, Campbell heard back from the camp’s director that she got in.
“When I heard that I got in, I literally jumped up and down with my parents.” Only one camp would influence the rest of her life.