After reading through the assignment for this class, I knew exactly the area that I wanted to study. Unfortunately, my ambition certainly outdid my experience. I have never done a project that involved using AP style. This made it increasingly difficult to write my article without having to correct multiple errors.
When I thought about what I wanted to do, I decided to talk about a very difficult topic. I currently work for the VOA at the youth resource center. This homeless shelter houses teens ages 16-22. Nearly half of these teens are part of the LGBT community. I was interested by the amount of teens that came from a religious home and then became homeless. I wanted to see if there was a specific correlation between teenagers in the LGBT community and religious homes leading to homelessness.
Finding sources for this was fairly easy, however, extremely controversial. I had access to data supplied by the VOA and point people to talk to. It was difficult to find a religious leader from the LDS church to candidly talk with me. Luckily, a good friend of mine who serves as a Bishop agreed to participate in my interview. Although I had sources to talk with, I had a hard time getting information from the religious perspective.
Overall, this project was very sensitive. I wanted to give perspective to both sides of the controversy. I learned that to do investigative journalism, you often need to intrude into dark spaces. I’ve learned that there are stories that are worth researching and boundaries that should be pushed to get that information. I am grateful for those who were willing to participate in my search.
Kierra Cable is a senior at the University of Utah studying Strategic Communication. She will be graduating in Summer 2019. She has already begun a career with the Volunteers of America working with homeless youth in Salt Lake.
Kierra has worked in the nonprofit/ministry area for the last five years. She hopes to continue to pursue a position working with youth for the rest of her career.