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23/02/2020 The magazine by Communication Science students of the UvA

An Intern's Insights From De Telegraaf: Backstage with Jorrit

Medium interviews Communication Science student, Jorrit Hoekstra on his experiences at De Telegraaf, the largest Dutch daily morning newspaper.


This week, Medium discussed with Jorrit Hoekstra, his experiences at De Telegraaf (The Telegraph in English). Jorrit is a Communication science student at the UvA who interned from September 3rd to December 31st, 2018 at the Dutch newspaper and is currently spending his semester abroad, as an Erasmus exchange student in Manchester.

An internship is a vital part of every student’s career. It provides a professional setting to the unpolished skills and further polishes them to suit the demands of the market. It adds the aspect of reality to the theories learnt at university and such was the internship for Jorrit at De Telegraaf.

“I applied for the internship way past the deadline”, says Jorrit, who also forgot to upload his CV at first but eventually received an offer from both De Telegraaf and Eurosport where ultimately, he chose De Telegraaf. He said that Eurosport expected him to already have skills like Photoshop and video editing which was not in his Communication Science student’s repertoire and thus De Telegraaf was a clear choice that provided the opportunity for him to learn and explore.

You’ll be challenged
Two hours on his first day of internship, Jorrit was made to interview Peter van den Heuvel, a Dutch Crime journalist and TV-personality. As he explained this encounter further to Medium, he mentioned how had no time to prepare and was thrown headfirst into something like this.  However, Jorrit overcame it by relying on his sense of “self-responsibility”. That being, an obligation within himself to complete whatever task his new job presented and later understood, that he was being tested.

His job description consisted of writing articles and conducting interviews but the internship had even cooler things as it further unfolded.  “They once, sent me to Munich to cover a Musical which was pretty cool” says Jorrit. Apart from that he was also provided with a Netflix account so that he had easy access to shows and movies that he could write reviews on.

It’s all an experience
Jorrit handled the Entertainment section but “because of the mandatory meetings every day you could also bring in stories for any other department, even the sports section”. The most vital tip for a career in journalism in his opinion was to apply for everything. He says, “Don’t look for something specific but value the experience and then your input in any other section will be valued appropriately.” According to Jorrit, if one wants to work under a newspaper, they should try to get as much experience as possible and Medium couldn’t agree more.  

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