By Sheila Nekesa Waswa
As I leave Lola Kenya Screen at the end of my internship, I can confidently say I had three great months of learning while getting exposed to specialised areas like culture and its role in development.
Through attending and reporting on internal and external events, I got the chance to network and socialise with a diverse group of people. For instance I attended two Lola Kenya Screen film meetings; I was the master of ceremonies on one and news reporter on the second.
Having mostly been dealing with writing of news features on culture and the arts, I honed my writing skills, learning how to competently express myself in written communication while driving arguments that educate, inform and make the reader aware of pertinent issues.
The ability to properly analyse and put content into perspective having been my greatest weakness, each working day provided an avenue for improvement.
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Despite the fact that more work has to be put to it, I feel confident enough to pursue any career related to media and information because I know that Lola Kenya Screen has offered me the skills that are not offered in school or in many organisations in the country.
Though having initially struggled to write good enough articles for publication, I am glad to report that many of the articles I filed were used on the independent ArtMatters.Info that focuses on the arts and lifestyle issues in Africa and the Diaspora and in Lola Kenya Screen’s corporate communications publications, including lolakenyascreen.org website.
The greatest lesson I have learnt so far is that a ‘writer is a thinker’ and hence for anybody to succeed in journalism, he/she must be an intellectual.
I recommend that Lola Kenya Screen considers opening a college that will focus on equipping media practitioners with skills that most of them seem to be lacking.
I also recommend that the management imposes internship charges in order to support the daily operations of the organization.
I specially thank Ogova Ondego, the Managing Trustee and Creative Director of Lola Kenya Screen for offering me the platform on which to train and learn. Dedicating his time and effort to personally supervise me was a constant reminder and encouragement to me that one can get to the peak of one’s career only if one is totally committed to it.
Sheila Nekesa Waswa, a student of Communication and Journalism at Moi University, is a former Cultural Journalism & Arts Criticism Intern at Lola Kenya Screen. We offer 8-16-week experiential learning to final year university students in Media and Information Literacy, Creative writing, Cultural Journalism, Critical Appreciation of Creativity, Event Planning and Presentation, Movie Production, Graphic Design and Website Development. Eligible for the programme are students of Media, Information, Communication, Journalism, Mass Communication, TV/Video Production, Visual Communication, Advertising, Literature and related areas are eligible.