Alumni Profiles

Where Are They Now

Camille Moore was in the 2009 Television section.  She is currently a junior in high school.  This past summer she interned at Teen Diaries, an electronic media group.  While there, she wrote articles daily and screened calls for their blog and talk-radio shows.
“[The UJW] taught me the basics of journalism, giving me a platform to build upon.”


Charmie Snetter
Sherwood High School

Charmie Snetter was in the 2003 Print section.  She participated in the UJW as a high school senior.  After the Workshop she went on to pursue a degree in journalism at Temple University—where she was editor of the college paper.  She now works on the News Copy Desk at the Boston Globe. Charmie says much of these achievements are owed to her UJW mentors.

“The program was a phenomenal experience for me.  The UJW forced me to be a confident reporter. “


Chris Williams
Gonzaga College High School

Chris Williams was in the 2003 Television section.  He is currently a reporter at WHLT-TV—the CBS affiliate in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.  After the Workshop he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in journalism from the University of Maryland.  He says the UJW was his first exposure to TV news and helped him land a four-year paid internship at WTTG-TV, Washington’s FOX5.

“I got to meet different people in the business and it was a great networking opportunity”


Ariana Guy
Courtland High School

Ariana Guy was in the 2008 Print section.  She is currently a high school senior and editor in chief of the high school newspaper.   She’s currently applying to colleges and considering an International Affairs major.  Thanks in-part to the UJW, Ariana says she’s completely confident in my abilities to accomplish anything.

“The Urban Journalism Workshop has given me confidence and the experience needed to lead a newspaper staff.”


Taylor Dankmyer was in the 2007 and 2008 Radio section.  He is currently studying journalism at the University of Missouri.  While earning his degree he has written for the college paper and interned at PBS NewsHour Online.  Taylor says the experience he gained in the UJW helped him land the job at PBS.

“I learned how to interview people for radio and how to report complex stories”


Mariya Ilyas was in the 2008 and 2009 Print section.  She is currently a freshman at Bowdoin College, on a full scholarship.  She writes weekly for the Bowdoin Orient—the nation’s oldest continuously published weekly college newspaper.

“One of the most important things I learned in the UJW is how to write a quality and to-the-point news story—that skill has proven to be very essential when producing news articles under demanding deadlines.”


Lezla Gooden was in the 2009 Television section.  She is currently a junior in high school.  Since the UJW she participated in LeadAmerica’s Media & Journalism Program—a 10-day residential program held at Georgetown University.

“I felt at ease and able to participate more fully in the Georgetown program, because of what she learned at the UJW.”


Taylor Valencia
Brooke Point High School

Taylor Valencia was in the 2009 Print section.  She is currently a senior in high school and taking her first journalism course.  She says working with her UJW mentors and Howard University volunteers helped her discover her passion for journalism.

“What I learned in the UJW helped me realize how much I really love writing, and whatever I end up doing in my career I want to involve journalism”


Devna Shukla
Northwest High School

Devna Shukla was in the Television section from 2003 through 2006.  She currently works at CNN’s “Anderson Cooper 360.”  Devna got her start at CNN as an intern for “The Situation Room” in Washington.  She earned a degree in political science from UCLA.

“UJW was the catalyst that took a simple thought of “what is journalism all about?” and made it a lifelong passion and professional path.”


Jasmine Berry
Charles Herbert Flowers High Scol

Jasmine Berry was in the 2008 Print section.  She is currently studying journalism at Barry University.  Next semester Jasmine will be News editor for the college paper. y school paper.

“The experience I gained in the UJW helped me when I got to college.  The newspaper staff recognized me as good student journalist.”


Juan Diasgranados was in the Radio section from 2006 through 2008.  He’s studying journalism at Hampton University with a Spanish language minor.  He’s currently an on-air personality and promotions director at WHOV-FM.  Juan also travels with Hampton’s basketball and football teams to report from the sideline.
“All the fundamentals and skills I learned in the UJW have helped me become a better on-air personality.  I learned the broadcast writing style, and voice and diction which has helped me in the on-air booth.”


Ashley Tyson was in the 2006 Print section.  She currently studies political science at Haverford College.  This past summer she worked as an intern for the Corporate Communications department at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.  After completing her undergraduate degree, Ashley plans to attend law school.
“My participation in the UJW was instrumental in my being selection for internships and I was able to apply many of the things I learned in the workshop to complete my assignments.”


Dakarai I. Aarons
DuVal HS

Dakarai Arons was in the Print section from 1999 through 2001.  After graduating from the University of Nebraska’s school of journalism, Dakarai was an education reporter for The (Memphis) Commercial Appeal.  He was also a  staff writer for Education Week newspaper before becoming the a director for a D.C.-based public affairs firm.

“I really do owe my career to the enthusiastic and patient UJW mentors. It was clear to me soon after starting my first journalism class that I had a leg-up on other students because I had gotten field experience working with [professional] journalists [in the UJW].”


Ryan Arrendell was in the 2008 Television section and the 2009 Radio section.  She is currently studying journalism and African-American Studies at Northwestern University.  Ryan is involved in various on-campus groups including the African-American Freshman Advisory Board, Student Admissions Council, Chicago Area Mentoring Program, and For Members Only—Northwestern’s black student alliance. She plans to write for the college’s online magazine.

“In UJW, I learned the importance of meeting deadlines and honing in on the focus of each story.”