This year for Field Work Term, I decided it was finally time I try my hand in the field I hope to someday work in: journalism. So I found myself flying half way around the world to Phnom Penh, Cambodia, to intern for the English language newspaper, the Cambodia Daily. It was more than just fresh fruit a desire to get away from the cold Vermont winter that brought me here though, I knew that working for the Daily as opposed to staying at a US paper would give me the chance to do some real reporting. In the six short weeks I’ve been able to develop my own feature stories to write as well as rewrite and assist in writing some news stories.
My first day here was an abrupt introduction to the problems Cambodia’s facing today with protests from garment worker’s striking for a higher minimum wage, and the opposition party trying to gain attention for the election last summer that they see as unfair. These protests have become violent more than once since I have been here, and it’s become a long drawn out saga that no one can see an end to any time close. Underneath the news though there are real people living with these minimum wages, and who’s lives are affected by the corrupt government
I’m a Bennington student, so unlike most interns that pass through here I’m not on a straight track to study journalism. Because I’m mostly interested in anthropology, I’ve been able to focus my own feature stories on human interest and even find stories that connect with a specific interest in indigenous cultures. It has been an amazing opportunity to use the sources and insight from the newsroom to connect to this country and it’s people.