Cal State Fullerton University’s Communications School this month recognized the Voice of OC nonprofit newsroom as their top internship workplace of the year.

“The Department of Communications at Cal State Fullerton is thrilled to recognize Voice of OC as the James P. Alexander Internship Site Award winner for 2022,” said Amber Chitty-Wilson, Faculty Intern Coordinator CSUF. 

Credit: Celine Haeberly, VOICE OF OC

The award was named for James Alexander, Cal State Fullerton University’s first full-time faculty member and key architect of the university’s Communications Department. 

Alexander, who died in 2009, launched the internship program in 1965 and today it’s one of the largest in the nation

“Interns have shared overwhelmingly positive feedback about their experience over the years,” Chitty-Wilson said of the Voice of OC internship experience, “praising both the journalistic training they receive and the respect and trust they are given as young reporters learning the ropes. Students enjoy being given the freedom to pitch and write stories about areas of genuine interest while learning industry best practices for investigative reporting.” 

“We are really proud and appreciative of our partnership with Cal State Fullerton University all these years as well as all the students who have received training and those who have gone on to become leaders in our newsroom,” said Voice of OC Publisher and Editor-in-Chief Norberto Santana, Jr. 

“This partnership shows how effective local universities and students can be in heightening the accountability of our local officials and public agencies, which helps us all build healthier, more vibrant and equitable communities together,” Santana said. 

Not only does Voice of OC give internship to students, the nonprofit newsroom has hired many Cal State Fullerton University communication majors  including VOC Civic Editor Spencer Custodio, Reporters Brandon Pho, Hosam Elattar, Noah Biesiada as well as one of the VOC newsroom’s original reporters Adam Elmahrek, now at the LA Times.

Voice of OC is committed to supporting student journalism and routinely partners with local universities to nurture student content. In addition to Cal State Fullerton, VOC also partners with Chapman University and continues to seek more partnerships with local community college and high school journalism programs. 

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