IMG_1848Reflection Blog:

Coming up with an idea for my enterprise story was not very hard. I just thought of topics I might enjoy writing about, and what would be relevant. After less than a minute I came across the idea of writing about the current media transition in the snowboarding industry. When I went home for winter break, I learned that my home mountain Seven Springs wouldn’t be producing their web edits anymore. They were doing it to pursue a heavier social media presence, and at first I was upset. After noticing that Think Thank was putting out content throughout the season instead of their typical full movie, I soon realized the snowboarding community as a whole was going through a media shift.

To locate my sources I contacted a few friends that work in the snowboard industry and ride for a few companies to see if they were down to let me interview them on the current media situation. Luckily they were all happy to help me out and share some knowledge. I also contacted a few people I didn’t know, such as Justin “Stan” Leville, to  get some opinions from their perspective.

Choosing my sources was relatively easy. I tried to get well-rounded perspectives from different people in the snowboarding industry. I contacted Ian Macy, who produces content for a few different companies and ski resorts, to get a filmer’s opinion on the media shift because he is the one standing behind the camera filming stuff.

I also tried to get an opinion from a riders perspective, because they are the ones actually being filmed for the content produced. To get a rider’s perspective I contacted my friend Cameron Dunmyer, who rides for Oakley and Gnu Mid-Atlantic. I also quoted one of the riders from the DC video series I was talking about in my paper, Brady Lem, because in the video he gave his opinion on starting to film street so early in the season.

Lastly, I contacted “Stan” because he runs a snowboarding news show, “Last Resort,” where he shares his opinion on subject matters within the snowboarding community in a satirical way. I thought having his opinion would be important because many people watch his show, and he is one of the voices of the snowboard community.

The presentation of snowboard media has been a controversial topic for as long as I can remember. I knew going into the story that I wanted to write something neutral that focused more on the factual side of things, as I didn’t want to offend anyone. Instead of focusing on what the best way to portray snowboarding media is, I just focused on how it is being portrayed and how it is different from the past.

Over the course of my research, I gathered an insane amount of information regarding how the snowboard industry is today, how it was, why it changed, what’s better for business, how it’s going to be in the future, if it’s a good or bad thing and many other opinions. I would have loved to write a longer paper that involved all of these topics listed — and many more — but it would have been confusing for the reader if they were not an active member in the snowboard community.  To keep it simple, I focused on what the media used to be, what it is today, unbiased factual reasons about why it changed, and how it could possibly be in the future, making sure not to offend anyone in the process.

My rough draft was hard to put down on paper because I had an overwhelming amount of information, prior knowledge and an opinion of my own, so I wasn’t sure what to include in the story. After finally figuring that out, putting words on paper became relatively easy. The hard part has been editing and figuring out AP Style. Because I have very little background other than participating in class, I struggle to notice when my AP Style isn’t correct, and therefore don’t realize to look it up and fix it. I also struggled with quote placement, but after realizing my faults I added more quotes and fixed the positioning of them to make the story a more enjoyable read.

The most surprising thing about writing the enterprise story was how willing people were to give me their opinion, even though they didn’t have to and wouldn’t benefit from it in any way. Part of me believes that was what made the experience such a great one. It allowed me to get out of my comfort zone and think about something that is such a major part of my life in a different light. It forced me to think about it not only from one perspective or opinion, but in a way that everyone could understand, relate to and feel unbiased about. Writing the enterprise story was a great experience, and I am glad I picked the topic that I did.


Brady McCarthy is a first-year student at the University of Utah. He is 19, and a Pennsylvania native. He plans to attend business school with a focus on marketing. His favorite activities include snowboarding, skateboarding and doing anything fun with his friends.


Beyond the water cycle: Life and environmental lessons from a former BLM director

Story and Photos By: JAKE PHILLIPS 

Patrick Shea’s beard was wet.

It was an oddly fitting picture of the former director of the Bureau of Land Management, who despite being out of government for 20 years, has water on his mind a lot these days. It was a rainy Thursday morning, and Shea, 70, was strolling to class.

Not on the University of Utah campus, where he’s been a research professor of biology and taught a class on urban streams for years, but at a local elementary school.

Every Thursday morning Shea teaches a class on water to fourth graders at Rose Park Elementary School in Salt Lake City. He arrived to a roomful of damp students who had just returned from recess.

As their teacher, Hannah Dolata, instructed her students to find their seats, Shea dried off his bushy white beard. He asked them what they had learned the previous week. The students couldn’t wait to tell him about the written equation they’d learned that showed how much water they used when showering or teeth brushing.

One student proudly exclaimed that if he brushed his teeth with the water running for three minutes and showered for 10 minutes he would have had used 52 gallons of water in the process.

“I try to conserve water every day because my grandma complains about the water bill,” said Valentine, 9.

Shea then asked the students what they should do after wetting their toothbrushes.

“Turn off the water!” the students yelled in unison.

While most elementary school students learn about the water cycle, Dolata’s fourth-grade class at Rose Park Elementary School is getting a much more in-depth education about water and how it affects them. With Utah’s less-than-abundant water supplies and growing population, water conservation has become more important than ever.

Salt Lake is winning water conservation fight

Around 33 percent of Utah is considered to be true desert, meaning the state receives 5 to 8 inches of precipitation annually, according to Utah’s Comprehensive Weather Almanac. The heavily populated Wasatch Front receives around 15 inches of precipitation annually.

Along the Wasatch Front, Salt Lake City appears to be winning in its fight to conserve water. According to the 2014 Salt Lake City Water Conservation Master Plan, conservation has exceeded expectations and the overall trend is a reduction in water use in the area. Classroom programs like Shea’s are crucial in these efforts, the city’s Department of Public Utilities said.

Yet, with climate change and other environmental concerns an increasing reality to students both in childhood and their future adulthood, it’s especially important to teach children today about ways to address these issues, Dolata said.

While Salt Lake City has responded to calls to conserve water, planners expect the city will need to do more in the future. According to a University of Utah study conducted in 2017, the state population is expected to grow from 3.2 million to 3.9 million by the year 2030, an increase of about 22 percent.

If Salt Lake residents continue to use water at the same rate they did in 2000 Salt Lake City’s water usage is expected to increase by 23 percent by 2030, according to the Salt lake City Department of Public Utilities.

Shea asked the students about where the water they use every day comes from. He explained the majority of water in Utah comes from snow in the canyons. Then the children attempted to name some of the canyons near Salt Lake.

The class’ homework assignment was to look at the weather and to document whether it was an accurate report.

“The biggest problem for you growing up is figuring out what is true and is not true,” Shea said.

A different kind of ‘water bucket’ challenge

Shea wasn’t totally out of his element. It had been five years since he had last taught elementary students about proper water usage.

The daughter of a colleague, who Shea worked with on state water laws, was teaching fourth graders and challenged the research professor to speak to her class.

Hesitant at first, Shea said he’s come to enjoy the experience.

“The students are like sponges and want to learn more,” he wrote in an email.  

A few weeks later, the professor was back, this time leading a field trip to a water treatment plant up Big Cottonwood Canyon. With Shea was Jacob Maughan, treatment plant operator, who led a tour of the plant and explained how the facility purifies water to make it potable. From there, the energetic children then returned to their bus and traveled to City Creek Canyon.

At City Creek Canyon, a popular biking and hiking destination for Salt Lake residents, the students were met by John Wells, who manages the city’s watershed operations. With students trailing behind, Wells led the class on a walk up a winding, paved canyon road while explaining why it’s important to protect the watershed.

He told students that dogs are not allowed in the canyon to protect the water quality in the streams that the city depends on. As the students fidgeted and chatted, Dolata, their teacher, stressed the importance of showing students the real-life connection to the water cycle.

“In fourth-grade science they’re learning about Utah science and start to connect what they’re learning to the world,” she said. They “see themselves as scientists.”


Hannah Dolata and her class overlook a water storage unit and the Salt Lake Valley.


Dolata’s class walk across a concrete platform that serves as water storage at the Big Cottonwood Water Treatment Plant.


Patrick Shea looks on as Jacob Maughan explains how snowmelt is cleaned and transformed to drinking water.


Maughan telling the students what chemicals are added to unclean water to make it potable.


Maughan advises students to be cautious in his lab, because there are dangerous chemicals present.




Dolata and her class watch water spill over a weir used to control water flow and filter out solid matter.

Jager K Chynoweth



MY STORY: Technology advancing Utah’s music scene



This news story brought with it its own struggles, but definitely helped me to become better and smarter writer. My original topic idea was to address the opioid crisis in Utah and how marijuana legalization may alleviate the problem. I quickly found out that I bit off a little more than I could handle with article’s time requirements and my everyday responsibilities. I struggled to get in contact with interviewees, and when I did I had a lot of rain checks and no shows.

I quickly changed topics and settled with a topic closer to home. My idea for my topic on advancing music technology and its correlation with the rising hip-hop scene in Utah came from friendships with a few of Salt Lake’s local producers and rappers.

I knew my friends would be great sources for my article because a lot of their rising success can be attributed to the technological advancements happening in music today. After switching topics, my interviewing and writing process went very smoothly. It was a topic I was interested in and I felt like I could help bring attention to Utah’s growing music scene.

I definitely noticed that the writing process goes a lot smoother for me when I have strong knowledge of the topic at hand. I was able to achieve this by doing my own outside research on the topic and then conducting thorough interviews that I later reanalyzed. After experiencing all the turmoil with the first topic, it was a relief to see the outcome I had with my current story.


Jager Kole Chynoweth is enrolled as a student at the University of Utah. He is majoring in Strategic Communication, while focusing on digital marketing and advertising. When he is not in school or working he loves to hike and backpack Utah’s amazing landscapes with his husky.

15 seconds to fame: How Instagram turned the snowboard world on its head

Story and Photos by BRADY McCARTHY

Facing a potential avalanche of unhappy snowboarders and the snowboarding industry as a whole, production companies and even ski resorts are in the midst of a change of seismic proportions on how they promote snowboarding.

In the past, snowboard media has been consumed through magazine subscriptions, “ski porn” movie releases by production crews every fall and online videos posted to websites such as

But Instagram turned that all upside down five years ago in a shift that leveled the slopes. The social-media platform effectively democratized the self-promotion and exposure of the elite and those clawing their way to the top of the sport.

In June 2013 the social-media platform started to allow users to post 15-second videos, and with that Instagram changed from being a photo-sharing platform to primarily video sharing. Users were then able to receive instant gratification — and responses — by opening up the app and simply scrolling down through 15-second videos.

Soon these 15-second videos became one of the main ways to view snowboard media, allowing snowboarders to share and view snowboarding media without spending as much time — or money — consuming them.

“It allows up-and-coming snowboarders to get more exposure and make a name for themselves,” Gnu Snowboards Mid Atlantic rider, Cameron Dunmyer, said about the introduction of videos to instagram.


Cameron Dunmyer by a street spot at sunset, February 2017. Photo by Brady McCarthy

Independent snowboard production companies began to decline a decade ago. Today, they are almost obsolete. Ian Macy, the content creator and video content specialist for Woodward Copper and Terrain park Marketing Coordinator for Seven Springs, Pa., said production companies aren’t receiving the same backing from snowboard companies to “buy-in” their riders to the movie.

“The amount of full-production snowboard video crews in the last five years has dropped significantly,” Macy said.

In the past, companies’ underwriting money would not only pay for companies’ rider’s participation, but the entire production, from film crews and their equipment to travel and other expenses. Instagram and other social-media platforms have eroded much of that spending as companies realize they get more reach — and their dollar goes farther — with brand videos and other content distributed over social media.

Instead, snowboard companies increasingly turn to contract filmmakers, who are now paid to produce online content and even full-team movies, because they then have complete control over the project rather than underwrite independent film crews.

In an attempt to stay relevant, video crew Absinthe Films has leveraged social media in promoting their new project. Last year Absinthe had to resort to crowdfunding after struggling to keep people interested and in turn receive enough money to produce their project, Turbo Dojo.

This year they have been incorporating social media and live streams of filming sessions at famous spots with big-name riders, allowing the consumer to get a behind the scenes look at the filming process. This method of presenting media has also proved to keep potential consumers excited about the upcoming project.

Independent film companies aren’t the only ones taking advantage of social media as a marketing strategy. The No. 1 park on the East Coast, according to Transworld Snowboarding’s 2017 Park Poll, Seven Springs has decided to switch their media marketing to only involve social media for the 2017-2018 season.


The Seven Springs sign illuminated by Christmas lights. Photo courtesy of Tanner Scott.

Historically, Seven Springs released a web series on, “The Seven Deadly Edits.”  Macy explained people aren’t watching those videos the way they did just five years ago. He also said that single Instagram clips of one trick are getting more views, likes and comments than a full three-minute video that required more effort, meeting internal demand for more viewers.

“If it’s the right thing and it’s presented a certain way, it could blow that typical three minute edit out of the water,” Macy said.

Macy said it’s hard to predict the future of snowboarding media, but there isn’t consensus when it comes to consumers’ tastes. He said a mix of the old and new ways of presenting snowboarding will work the best.

Instead of filming for a video and incorporating social media into the process, some productions are being released incrementally as videos throughout the year. DC Transistors and Forest Bailey’s FSBS are two examples of video projects being released throughout the year highlighting specific trips that would usually constitute a full movie.


“DC Transistors” crew member Jordan Morse at the Rail Gardens. Photo by Brady McCarthy

It’s also forced filming to start earlier in the year for riders in the DC crew.  Brady Lem, a DC Transistors crew member, said he wasn’t excited at first about the early street mission experience in “DC Transistors Episode 1: The Early Hunt.”

“Kinda was bummed on going on a street trip this early at first, but now looking back on it I’m pretty excited that we did it,” Lem said.

Think Thank, a film production company known for its creative take on snowboarding videos, has taken a similar approach but with a different layout. The company’s project this year, “Falling Leaf,” has followed riders throughout their travels. Think Thank now releases “Leafs” at certain points throughout the season.

What makes their project different from others is that it’s presented in a mini-magazine format on the internet. The “Leafs” include photos, videos and text allowing the best of all forms of media that can be quickly accessed by viewers without giving up the interactive experience of a magazine or movie.

“I mean the short of it is that riders are more in control of content now because movies are less viable,” said Justin “Stan” Leville, host of the popular snowboarding news show, “Last Resort With Stan.”


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Outdoor Retailer show says bye-bye to Utah, but does the Beehive State care?

Annual shows have new home but its departure from Utah may have less impact than you think. 


A tourist staple and economic driver for 20 years, the renowned Outdoor Retailer shows, which brought the outdoor industry’s blue-chip businesses and top athletes to the Wasatch Front, no longer calls Utah home.  

In 2017, the shows’ organizers, citing opposition to reducing Bears Ears National Monument and other land management policies by federal and state officials, announced their decision to leave Utah for Colorado.

“We chose Denver because of Colorado’s long-term commitment to protecting and nurturing public lands,” Marisa Nicholson, director of the Outdoor Retailer trade show, said.

While the departure has left a black mark on the Beehive State outdoor recreation industry and image, how much of a hole it will leave in Utah’s economy is unclear. Nate Furman, a University of Utah professor in the parks, recreation and tourism department, said it’s more of a lost opportunity that will affect Salt Lake City in the short term.

“In the long term, I don’t think that it will have major effects, as the gravity of national politics will drown out any effects of whether or not the show is held on the western margin of the Rocky Mountains or the eastern margin,” Furman said.

The Outdoor Retailer shows have drawn tens of thousands of tourists and athletes from around the world who come for the latest in outdoor equipment and to sample the state’s recreational offerings.

The trade shows pulled out of Utah in protest after the Trump administration and Utah politicians chose to shrink two controversial national monuments. Along with the proposed reduction of Bears Ears by 85 percent, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument is slated to be cut in half. As a proponent of public lands, the trade shows’ leadership took a stand in protest, as did many companies that attend the convention.

Outdoor industry stalwarts, including California-based retailers Patagonia and The North Face, met with Utah Gov. Gary Herbert after President Trump’s the decision to reduce Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. The companies ultimately decided that moving the show from its longtime home of Utah would be the best choice for their industry as a whole. 

“I say enough is enough,” Yvon Chouinard, Patagonia’s founder, said in a statement. “If Governor Herbert doesn’t need us, we can find a more welcoming home. Governor Herbert should direct his Attorney General to halt their plans to sue and support the historic Bears Ears National Monument.”

Over the past 20 years, Outdoor Retailer has brought 40,000 visitors annually to Utah during their twice-yearly shows, which run for three days at a time. Additionally, the shows have brought $45 million in consumer spending.

While these numbers may seem large, the loss hardly puts a dent into Utah’s roughly $13 billion tourism economy. The outdoor recreation industry brings in $12.3 billion in consumer spending a year as well as $737 million in state and local tax revenue, according to the Outdoor Industry Association. While Utah as a whole will most likely see little impact, local businesses may see mixed outcomes, depending on their size.

Smaller companies may have a harder time as they relied on the increased sales the shows brought, but shouldn’t be hit too hard, said Sunn Kim, the retail store manager at local Utah company

With annual revenue of $634.54 million, makes most of its sales online, allowing it to weather the shows’ departure with little impact on its bottom line. The company has a small retail shop that may be affected by the departure.

I believe the departure of [Outdoor Retailer] will have a more immediate impact on Utah’s outdoor industry and economy,” Kim said. “I believe that smaller businesses focused on tourism will suffer, but this impact will only be temporary.” 

Nicole Cardwell

My Story:

Is the air we are breathing, causing disabilities?



We were asked to write about something that interested us or that we could make newsworthy. I was in Houston for 18 months and came back to Utah in the middle of the winter. This is when I realized how bad our air was. There was a drastic change and I couldn’t believe I had lived here my whole life and never thought that it could really affect my life and health. I started to look more into this and since then I’ve had a desire to help others be aware of what’s happening and what can be done.

I started with the big guys that record air quality and contacted the manager, who was happy to help me. I wanted a perspective from a student that was studying climate change at the University of Utah and I decided to look through the colleges to find what would best fit. I contacted a department and they directed me to the geography department that helped me find Rebecca Steve. She was very helpful and open to meeting with me and sharing information about her future project.

I had my goal of where I wanted the story to go and worded my questions and follow up questions around that. After having all of the information, I made an outline and organized things by putting it down and filling in the gaps. It was harder with the more scientific definitions and phrases but I made sure I understood it, and put it simply.

The writing process flowed and I had other people go over it before our peer reviews and that helped me. I made sure they understood that it was supposed to be a news story and that helped them critique my paper and make it feel and sound descriptive. It helped to have the peer review because he was able to help me through every section and gave good suggestions. It helped to see his paper and his style. It definitely helped to have all of the writing exercises before and getting used to writing outside what I’ve always known.

I think I could add more of the personalities and back stories for the people I interviewed on my blog. That says a lot about why they are there and what has made them passionate about what they do and why. I think I could add why I decided to research this information and my theory and experience as well.


Nicole is a student at the University of Utah in the Communication major. She is a 1st degree Bachelor student and will graduate in the spring of 2019. She is passionate about making goals and working hard and had many plans for the future. 

Nicole plans to go into marketing for Science, Health, Environmental risk and wants to work with public health. She hopes to help with non profit organizations and programs to help with Utah’s environment. 

On her 18-month mission in Houston, Nicole taught English as a second language in schools, libraries and churches. She is fluent in Spanish and her parents are from Mexico and El Salvador. Since then, service has been a priority for Nicole and she enjoys helping those in need. 


Everett Olsen



The idea for my enterprise story originally stemmed from my experience at “The Peoples Cvlt’s” third concert, hosted inside the Goldblood Collective. I happened to be one of the only 20 or so people in the audience for the group’s first show. Seeing the rapid progression in the number of fans the group had gained for this performance, immediately had me asking myself, “How?”  

After I had decided on my topic and the angle I was going to work, it was time to reach out to members of the groups for interviews. I first reached out to Max Bradshaw or Mad$haw, a friend from high school who happened to be co-producing for the group. While Mad$haw himself preferred to stay behind the scenes, he gladly introduced me to the other producer, Sean Mota (4k), as well as other group members Teague and Kiefy Kush.

I wanted to make sure for this story I captured the setting properly for my interview, to get the most intuitive and honest answers I could from these creatives. To do so I stopped into Mad$haw’s basement studio on a Wednesday night, the night the group meets and collaborates each week. Although I came to the house ready as a journalist, I chose to put this on the back burner, and simply talk with the group members casually building rapport until I felt ready to get down to business.  I think in doing so I was able to capture much more natural and honest responses from these artists.


Everett Olsen is a junior at the University of Utah studying communication. After an intensive two-year search for a major, Everett has found an outlet for his voice though journalistic writing and reporting. Born in Salt Lake City, Everett developed a love for the outdoors as well as a profound passion for music. He plans to cover more stories and events that parallel these personal passions, as they seem to yield his best writing.

Becca Carr




Utah Cops Struggle to Enforce Texting and driving law 


While looking for a topic to do my story on I started off with a Google search. I looked at local cities and came across a Salt Lake Tribune article about lawmakers killing a bill on texting and driving that could save lives. I then started to focus on the police and what the double standard was for them using cellular devices. From doing my interviews I moved my story more in the direction that because the law in place for texting and driving is so hard to enforce is it worth even having.

At first, I was nervous that I wouldn’t be able to connect to the people I needed to interview. I then started to think about people I knew and family connections, using sources that I could reach out to. I then got in contact with Rich Ferguson and Eric Johnson. Rich is Chief of Police while Eric is Detective Sargent. By talking to them I asked if they had anyone I could talk to that was a Highway Patrol Officer. I then called Jeremy Horne who was a Highway Patrolman for 10 years. After I had my main interviews I decided that it would benefit my story by having someone giving their opinion and thoughts about texting and driving, so I took it to campus and found Audrey Emery, a senior at the University of Utah.

I think the sources I got were the best I could have gotten for my story. I found police officers that are high in ranking and also found a specific officer that worked as a highway patrolman. I also think that information that I looked us about specific laws in place and looking up different counties news I found great information that benefited my story.

The main obstacle that I faced was looking for interviews. I didn’t know where to start because I knew I had to talk to people in high-ranking positions. But after I talked to a family member and got my resources together, it was smooth sailing from there.

I got a lot of information about police and the double standard, thoughts on texting and driving, how the law is enforced and so on. These questions gave me a lot of information that I had to narrow down. I narrowed it down to how and why police officers enforce the particular law of texting and driving along with what the solution can be for texting and driving. I decided these as my main focus because this is what most of my interviews focused on and what seemed more important.

The writing process was a little bit difficult to start. I have never written a news article and had never interviewed someone before, so the task was scary. As I started the process I started to become comfortable with talking to people and asking questions. I also had to learn how to narrow down information and make sure what I was writing down was correct and okay to quote.

I think what surprised me most through this whole process and story was that law enforcement doesn’t even enforce the law against texting and driving because it’s so difficult to detect the particular use.


I currently live in Salt Lake City, Utah where I am a Junior at the University of Utah. I am a communications major with my focus in strategic communications. As I continue to pursue my degree in communications – focusing on advertising, branding, marketing, and public relations – I hope to gain on-the-job experience that will help in my career. By doing so, I would ideally get a job with a respectable cosmetic company where I can work with the marketing or public relations team. Although the focus of my major is not journalism, I have found an interest in it and have piece of work that I am excited about.

Alexis Lefavor



I used to love Ichiban Sushi but in recent news I found out they were closed down by the health department. I noticed that they were popping up everywhere. I have noticed recently that sushi has been a trend. It can be really expensive! Ichiban Sushi has sushi that is advertised for half off. My story talks about how they opened back up. I want to make local sushi lovers aware of this restaurant. I also want to make people aware of the health department’s website. They are required to post all of the health inspections at established restaurants. I was not aware of this until I started doing my story.

I used Yelp and Facebook to find my sources. I read many reviews positive or negative. Many of the negative reviews matched some of the reasons that lead up to the closing of the restaurant.  I interviewed people who left these reviews and asked about their experiences. I also interviewed somebody from the health department to figure out how they run the inspection.

As I got more information from my sources, I felt I was really able to write my story. The information I received is what guided my story and made the focus. The hardest part of this was trying to find people to interview. I also reached out to the Sandy Ichiban for comment and didn’t receive anything from them. I was hoping to incorporate into my story how they were planning on making sure they were able to stay open and not face another closure. I think it’s really important for restaurants to ensure that their customers feel safe eating there, especially anything with raw meat.

About Me

My name is Alexis Lefavor. I am a junior at the University of Utah majoring in Communication. I hope to graduate by Summer 2019. My focus is strategic communication. I have always been interested in marketing, branding and public relations. I hope to find myself somewhere in one of these fields in the future.

Mallory Bell


I have always had an interest in criminal justice and the judicial system. I decided to research the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative in Utah and find out what the future was for Sexual Assault Kits for my story.

My sources included employees of Utah’s Department of Public Safety, state senators and local organizations who helped write the upcoming bills. They were the best sources for this story because they gave me a variety of information while being employed by different entities. I was able to gather information from each source about the new bill, the part they played in helping the victims and helping to get the bill passed. I did encounter ethical or moral dilemmas while trying to find other sources that could give me information from the victims side. The sources I did have weren’t able to give me names or information about victims because it went against their advocacy.

I made sense of the information gathered by researching the topics that my sources were speaking to even more on my own. I also listened to the interviews that I recorded multiple times so that I was sure I understood the points they were trying to get across.

I made a plan for my story, and organized my ideas more after each person I spoke to or each thing I learned. I learned that being organized and having really great, well-thought questions helped get the information I needed. I learned a lot about the national initiative SAKI, but wasn’t able to include every detail. I thought it was interesting to find out where each state was in their project and how long it took them to get through the backlog. I was very surprised at some of the facts about how kits were handled in the past, such as kits being thrown away because it seemed unsolvable.

I ended up enjoying learning about my topic more than I even thought I would. I saw many opportunities and avenues for volunteering as I spoke with the different government organizations.



My name is Mallory Bell and I am a communication major at the University of Utah. I enjoy being able to show my creativity through painting, fashion, and writing. I grew up in Salt Lake City, and I was excited to quickly move to new places and learn new things. I moved to New York City, and returned home to complete my associates at Salt Lake Community College in fashion merchandising.

I love to constantly learn to be a better communicator in my personal and professional life. I also love to be with my family and friends, and especially in the outdoors. I love to hike, rock climb, ski and swim.

Victoria Tingey

Me 1Blog:

When I was coming up with ideas for story topics, I tried to think of something interesting that would grab the reader’s attention and also create a subject that could hold true meaning. As I ran through a couple ideas, I remembered our old Murray Theater located on the corner of downtown State Street. This is a building that truly captures the charm and history of Murray. It has an old-fashioned neon sign that welcomes people as they drive by. There is such an appeal about the building that has held so many memories for citizens of our city. It was used for great live entertainment, shows, concerts and also hosted Judy Garland and more recently Adele.

I was able to locate my sources by speaking with city developers directly in charge of the downtown area projects and gain their insight on the building. It was helpful to get information from their perspective and understand their thoughts on the building. They were the best sources to be able to communicate with because they have all of the information on the building. They are the people who are directing the project to reestablish the building.

I didn’t really encounter any issues during this project. Everything ran pretty smoothly. I was able to get information right from the start. They were all willing to speak to me and help me contribute to this story. I was given a lot of information so there was a lot that I wanted to make sure to include for this story. I wanted to maintain though focus of repurposing the building and finding out the history as well. I wanted to make my story unique and informative on what people have to look forward for this future of this unique building. I wanted to capture the essence of what it stands for and what it means to Murray.

The writing process was interesting because I gained new insights and knowledge. It was fun to put my story together. I feel like I learned so much on the special qualities of the building during this process. There were details that I had to leave out of the story to make sure that it met the requirements, however, I did include as much detail as possible.

I would say the most surprising aspect of my story was that I found out so much new information on the building. It was amazing how much history was a part of it that really added so much character to the Theater. I loved being able to learn more about it and piece together information. There are so many great qualities about this downtown theater. I believe it is important to keep as much history alive in our local cities and try to repurpose building that keep our city alive and unique. I really appreciated the opportunity that I had to research information and create a story out of the Murray Theater. It was such a wonderful experience. I appreciate the Murray city directors who took time out of their day to let me ask them questions and teach me more.

This was a great opportunity and I have grown to love this special little theater with so much character and charm even more so. This city definitely has an exciting future!

About Me:

My name is Victoria Marie Tingey and I am a student at the University of Utah. My plan is to graduate in Strategic Communications and later get a job in marketing or Public Relations. I love the University of Utah and I am grateful to the opportunity to attend. I plan to graduate in the spring of 2019.

I have a passion for learning and setting new goals for myself. I love to write and learn skills. I grew up playing tennis in high school. I love to travel and learn about new places. History has also been an interest of mine as well. I also love photography and the outdoors. I am proud to be from Utah. I enjoy having all four seasons within our state.

I am excited to learn and to be able to broaden my views and perspectives on writing. I love to accomplish things and better myself every day.


Young Entrepreneur Will Stop at Nothing to Quench his Thirst for Success


Ethan Cisneros should have been out of breath.

Like all 20 year olds faced with another day of multitasking, the University of Utah student was rushing through the motions of class and work. But unlike most on a recent Wednesday afternoon, Cisneros found himself in between classes hustling to Fox 13 News Station’s studio. The baby-faced junior was there to film a segment for the station’s afternoon feature, The Place, which showcases small local businesses.

Cisneros had a new haircut and was dressed to impress with a striped polo. It was clear this young entrepreneur meant business. Stepping out of his truck packed with catering menus, bins of Torani syrups, soda and fliers, he was fully equipped to pitch the impact his soda shop, Thirst, is making on Salt Lake City.

He finds his comfort in operating a shop that runs on the concept of making a “happy impact.”

Cisneros is a contributor in a wave that seems to be spreading throughout the Salt Lake City area. Young entrepreneurs, both enrolled in school and not, are leveraging social media and a vision to launch businesses. And making money doing it.

The traditional education system is designed to bolster the workforce, but Generation Z, which has an age range from six to 23, has rearranged the progress from school to work. In Salt Lake City, there seems to be a ripple of eagerness within this age group – a crescendo of young individuals moving toward a less traditional path.

From lemonade stands to soda shop

Cisneros began his entrepreneurial climb at 7, when he would ride his bike to the store, purchase lemonade, and sell it at a stand in his neighborhood. He recalls standing on the street and dancing around with a sign to attract customers.

He learned to ride his bike at 2, because, “When you’re a businessman, you need to be able to get around,” he said. At 10, he and his neighborhood friend wanted to make some money, so they started a lawn mowing business. “Zack and Ethan’s Lawn Mowing” grew over the span of six years, but by then, Cisneros was ready to move on.

During the 2014 Christmas season, he thought he’d try his luck hanging Christmas lights —  and he ended up with another business. But as the snow melted and summer came around, he noticed a hype around shaved ice shacks. His curiosity sparked, and Cisneros scoped out prospects – and potential competition. He sat at a local shaved ice shack and observed the operation, watching the lines and counting customers.

Shortly after, “Olympus Ice” was born. Lively music drew in high school students to the shack throughout the summer. They gathered under string lights at picnic tables, playing board games and “Twister” as they enjoyed their frozen delicacies. Come winter, Cisneros started his light-hanging business back up. He continued this seasonal cycle throughout his high school career. Little did he know, however, bigger opportunities were headed his way.

When Cisneros turned 18, his business partner reached back out to him. She said she had noticed the long lines at soda shops such as Swig and Sodalicious.

“Girls were driving all the way out to Provo for this stuff,” he said.

His ambition kicked in, and he began visiting all of the soda shops he could find in Utah, and soon learned there wasn’t one in Salt Lake. That’s when the idea for “Thirst” was born.

Thirst is located at 38 East 1300 South, Salt Lake City.

Cisneros developed plans, secured a location and assured his business partner it was a good investment.

“If you invest in this, I won’t let you down,” he told her. “Either this is going to succeed or I’m going to die.”

Cisneros had a clear idea of what he was getting into.

“I told myself, ‘This is not a lemonade stand anymore, this is a big deal,” he recalled.

Making a ‘happy impact’

A few blocks east of the Salt Lake Bees Stadium, Thirst’s bright orange roof cannot be missed. A long line of idling cars waits to reach the drive-through window, where customers order drinks such as the “Dr. McCreamy” and “Frat Star,” or sweet treats such as their signature “Scotcharoo.”

Inside the shop, Cisneros mixes drinks and serves smiles from the 8:30 a.m. open to 9:30 p.m. close, leaving only to make it to class on time. Thirst has been in business for nearly three years, and Cisneros spares no effort to keep its three locations running. Work is all he knows, and he expressed that it’s what makes him comfortable.

“I want to build massive success and prosperity, and I like to match my work ethic to my words,” he explained.

Cisneros mixes Thirst’s signature drinks for his customers. He enjoys being involved in the day to day operations of his shop.

It was this eagerness and determination that brought Cisneros to the lobby of Fox 13 News, anxiously prepping his equipment for showcase.


“I wonder if Big Buddha remembers me,” Cisneros said, in reference to Thirst’s Fox feature with Big Buddha from last year. “He likes my photos sometimes.”

Cisneros takes a story for Thirst's Instagram account. He actively keeps his followers engaged in what he's doing.

Cisneros takes a story for Thirst’s Instagram account. He actively keeps his followers engaged in what he’s doing.

He pulled out his phone and began taking a video for Thirst’s Instagram story. These Instagram updates are constant throughout Cisneros’ day to day – he prides himself on keeping his followers engaged and informed of what he is doing. An advocate of social media marketing, Cisneros is convinced that for his target demographic, nothing else works. He interacts regularly with his 3,000-plus followers, delivering to them a bona fide customer experience inside – and outside – his shop.

One evening, Cisneros recognized the driver of a car involved in a nearby accident as one of his loyal customers, and went out of his way to hand deliver her favorite drink to her at the scene of the accident. It’s this extra effort that helps build Thirst’s reputation for stellar customer service.

As each car pulls up to the drive-thru window, Cisneros greets it with a smile. He models his friendly interactions with his customers after his company’s mission statement: “Make a happy impact, one experience at a time.” With Cisneros’ level of enthusiasm and animation, it’s no wonder customers are driving away with a grin on their face. This contentment permeates the kitchen as well.

One of Cisneros’ employees, Conner Nelson, shared why he enjoys working at Thirst.

“It’s a pretty fun work environment, everyone just kind of laughs and has a good time,” he said, adding that he admires Cisneros’ work ethic. “I don’t really know how he does it to be honest.”

But Cisneros’ busy schedule doesn’t stop him from maintaining a healthy and happy workplace. Even as the boss, he remains friends with his employees, promoting teamwork through staff parties, movie nights and retreats. He even plans to take his team on a weekend trip to St. George.

Learning the ‘sexy skills’

Cisneros is thriving in the era for entrepreneurs when essentially anyone can buy something and resell it online. Through the indisputable power and reach of social media, as well as the drive and ardor that’s surging among the younger generations, the possibilities are endless. Young high school graduates no longer need to follow the long-established path laid out by their predecessors.

Cisneros has plenty of advice to give when it comes to entrepreneurship, and he emphasizes the importance of being willing to put in the work.

“It comes down to sacrificing the things that you may want in the moment, like a party or anything, for what you want in the long term,” he said. “I know what I want in the long term, which is massive.”

In Cisneros’ case, this desire for success has driven him from the moment he set up his first lemonade stand. He is working to develop a set of “sexy skills,” as he calls them.

“I’m getting my hands dirty doing it. I’m the one mopping the floors,” he said. “I’m gonna learn the sexy skills by not doing the sexy things, and then I’m gonna transfer those skills to a sexy business.”

Cisneros knows that he doesn’t want to run a soda shop forever, but he’s not ready to move on until Thirst is an undeniable success. However, he believes he will never be fully satisfied and hopes that Thirst will continue to prosper beyond him. When asked what sets him apart from the rest, his answer was simple:

“I’ll outwork everyone.”

Isabella Gentile


Young Entrepreneur Will Stop at Nothing to Quench his Thirst for Success


When presented with the freedom of choosing my subject for the Enterprise Piece, someone immediately came to mind. I knew of Ethan Cisneros from mutual friends on campus, and noticed that he had been featured in news stories before. His soda shop, Thirst, was a frequent conversation topic, and I knew he would be a great subject to do a story on.

When determining what sources I wanted, I knew the most important voice would be Cisneros himself. I wanted allow him the opportunity to tell his story in his own words, so I reached out to him first and foremost. I had an idea of what I wanted to cover, but he gave me even more content than I could have hoped for. He provided me with the answer to every single one of my interview questions, as well as answers that gave me additional directions to take. After just one interview, I knew I had my hands full with a fantastic story.

I then moved onto a Thirst employee, Connor Nelson. I had seen Nelson featured on Thirst’s Instagram before, so I knew that would be my outlet to reach him. I chose Nelson because he is someone who sees and observes Cisneros every day in a work environment, so I wanted his insight on Cisneros’ mannerisms throughout a typical work day. Nelson confirmed what I had already expected. Cisneros is just as pleasant to work for as he is hard working.

Thankfully, I encountered no ethical issues or obstacles in my research. Everything I needed was presented to me very easily, and I found the story writing itself before me. The only obstacle was the surprising amount of material that I was granted from my subject. I had original intentions to include several different elements in my story. Kiley Money from ELK Clothing, individuals from Cisneros’ fraternity, reputable members of the Entrepreneurial department here at the University of Utah, etc. But Cisneros provided me with more than enough content to build a riveting story.

Though the continuous theme of my story was Cisneros and his entrepreneurial climb, I found myself unable to pick merely one focus. He balances so many elements in his life, it seemed unfair not to address them all, and give credit where deserved for all of the projects he has devoted and currently devotes his time to.

And so, a great story was born. But after I got it all down on paper, it was nearly triple the required word count. The content flowed in more heavily than I had anticipated. Once I began the writing process, I knew it would be difficult to achieve a clean, newsworthy draft. It took a lot of revising to effectively summarize my story into a layout I was satisfied with. I completely rearranged my entire piece at least three times, and the addition and removal of different elements took a lot of time. As the due date came down to the wire, I dove even further into the editing process. Maybe a better way to put that would be the “hacking away at my story” process. Like previously mentioned, it took a lot of editing and collaboration with Professor Becker in order to achieve the story structure I wanted and determine the relevant pieces of information needed to be featured. I learned one very pertinent lesson about my writing during this process.

What I realized within my craft is that I am a wordy writer, always have been and always will be. I have a tendency to gather a lot of information, and once I put these details into my story, I have a hard time letting go and prioritizing. It’s important to be able to differentiate great details from exceptional details, or as Professor Becker put it, know when to kill your babies. But overall, I am satisfied with my piece, and though it’s still lengthy, I feel it’s important to do Cisneros justice for all the work he is doing. He stands out among everyone else his age, and that’s a story worth telling.



I am a student living in Salt Lake City, currently enrolled at the University of Utah. I am spending my four years attaining experience and knowledge to someday work as a creative director for a respectable company, ideally. I am majoring in Strategic Communication, so I am learning skills in marketing, advertising, branding, as well as public relations. Though I am not currently pursuing a career in journalism, I do have a piece of work that I am proud of and I believe to be worth reading. 

Jake Phillips

FullSizeRender 4

My Story:


My Blog:

I initially had a difficult time gaining inspiration for my enterprise story. I am honestly less than passionate about journalism and found it hard to find an interesting topic which I felt capable of tackling as a student journalist.

I wanted to do a story about the environment but didn’t know where to start. That winter had been especially dry and the inversion had trapped a lot of pollutants in the Salt Lake Valley so I thought that now would be a pertinent time to write a story about the environment.

Inspiration for my story came during a class one evening where my journalism class interviewed Patrick Shea, former director of the Bureau of Land Management. The class was interviewing Shea to practice interviewing subjects and writing profile pieces. While the class was interviewing Shea mentioned that he taught a class about water conservation to fourth graders at Rose Park Elementary.

I decided to write about water conservation education in Salt Lake City. I started my search by calling the city’s Department of Public Utilities, but I did not get a lot of information from officials there. I decided to ask my professor for Patrick Shea’s email so I could try to interview him.

When I contacted Shea he invited me to tag along with him when he went to Rose Park Elementary School to teach his class.  I was really excited to be allowed to come and see how Shea was teaching this group of fourth graders about water science and conservation.

Being able to go with Shea to Rose Park Elementary and eventually on a field trip with the class was crucial to me writing my story. Being able to talk to the students in the class and their teacher gave me an interesting perspective on why teaching water conservation to students is important and how the students were reacting.

About Me:

I am originally from Greenville, SC, where I lived for most of my life before moving to Salt Lake City to attend the University of Utah. I am a sophomore at the U where I am studying strategic communication. I began newswriting while taking a required journalism class in the spring of 2018.

Cali Felts


My Story:

New Development in Holladay, Utah

My Blog:

For my enterprise story, I chose to write about a possible new development site in my hometown of Holladay, Utah. I was curious to look at all of the different aspects of this new project, which is slated to be built on what has been an empty lot for years. Looking at the benefits and drawbacks of what will come about of Holladay was my goal for the story. I am personally against overdevelopment, which is why this particularly sparked my interest. This lot would be going from an empty lot where nothing occurred to bringing in more than 3,000 extra people into the town.

Finding information about this site was fairly easy considering how many news sources were covering it. I was able to go out and ask citizens of Holladay their opinions of the new development, and I was even put in touch with Cindy Taylor from Ivory Homes. Ivory Homes also has a website specifically for the proposal, including a slideshow attached that explains every little detail of the project. There are signs all over Holladay, an Instagram account against it and a website Holladay citizens created in opposition to the new development proposal. There have been multiple hearings about all the proposals and a time where Holladay citizens have been able to voice their opinion on the development.

After doing this whole project, my vision has shifted about overdevelopment. I still do believe we need to save some forest and not develop everywhere but at the same time, this lot was originally a mall. Holladay was built to accommodate the traffic of the mall and can handle the traffic of this possible new development – not to mention the economic bonus it would bring to Holladay.

About Me: 

I am a freshman at the University of Utah studying communications. I plan to graduate with a major in Strategic Communication and minor in Marketing. Upon graduation, I want to work in public relations for a company.

I grew up in Utah and was lucky enough to attend the University of Utah starting in the fall. In high school, I was part of a service group and held a leadership position in my high school dance company. I am interested in singing, dancing, traveling and boating. I work as a nanny for multiple families and absolutely love it. I am currently a Chi Omega at the University of Utah and I am travelling whenever I can get away.


Emilie Nielsen

emilie 1My Story:

Is Social Media Reality Ruining our Actual Reality?



For my enterprise story, I wanted to take on and bring up the issues involving younger generations. For young people, social media is king, queen and court as it literally rules the lives of many.

As this takes on even greater relevance in our lives, particularly with the current focus on Facebook, privacy and what we give up when we share our photos, stories and thoughts, I wanted to talk to some of the people who deal with this issue on a daily basis. I chose the sources whom I knew would have the knowledge of growing up or dealing with the stress of creating the perfect life on Instagram.

I wanted to have both young girls’ thoughts on this and the reflections of administrators and counselors to see what the prevailing view of social media was.

Estelle Andreasen was someone I wanted to bring into this story. I met her in Denmark where, she shared, she would skip class multiple times a week. This piqued my interest so when I decided to write this story I wanted to FaceTime with her and ask her thoughts on why she wasn’t going to school, or what was elevating her anxiety.

Sisters Annie and Emma Black were girls I wanted to talk to, knowing that they are fraternal twins who are different in almost every aspect of life. Annie — the more social media-minded of the two — and  Emma, who could never use social media and be content, each had points of view I wanted to include in the story.

Amber Black is their mother. I wanted to ask her about her most interesting insight into her daughters’ social media use. The girls had just gotten their first smartphones and I thought to ask Amber whether a major shift in  attitude would make a difference in how her kids use social media and its impact on their anxiety and social stress.

Debbie Perry is a counselor at Woods Cross High School. I thought that she would be an interesting person to ask about social media and phone usage at the school and what are the major generational differences that affect the phone usage.

I also wanted to talk to Deanne Kapetanov, the principal at Mueller Park Junior High School, to see how social media has affected the school dynamic and if its use has caused any problems at the school.


About Me:

I was born and raised in Utah and am now a senior at the University of Utah majoring in strategic communication.

I love photography, traveling and spending time with friends. I have always loved  Denmark, and was able to travel there for a study abroad year when I was a college junior. While there I was able to meet many different people from all around the world which broadened my love and desire to travel.

I have had many different jobs, including photographer, model, sales representative at Reynolds Car Wash, baby clothing boutique Over the Moon and Pictureline, which is a camera store.  I modeled in Denmark, where I also worked as a photographer for the main newspaper in Aarhus, the country’s second-largest city.



Kelsey Mae Rathke



My desire to write about urban beekeeping came from the many conversations regarding my own experiences with honey bees. My hope was to communicate how safe they are and how easy they are to keep for those who are interested.

Prior to writing this story, I knew Albert Chubak – the designer of the hive that my family uses. He has been a great resource as we have grown into beekeeping. Albert provided additional resources for the story, advising that I reach out to Beth Conrey as an additional expert and advocate for pollinators and Marlene Jacobsen Schnabel for her experiences with novice beekeeping.

Albert and Beth are extremely involved in the bee community in the United States. They both own businesses working with bees, regularly attend honey bee conferences as speakers and create material around beekeeping. Marlene has extensive experience bee keeping on a personal, non-business level, and can speak to her growth in the hobby.

Initially, I wanted the article to be more educational and less fun. However, preparing for the interviews and then consolidating my notes from the interviews redirected me toward highlighting particular opinions and experiences. The interesting pieces of what I had gathered were stories, not lists of facts.

My writing process truly began with preparing for the interviews and brainstorming the direction of those interviews. Once the interviews were complete, I condensed all of my notes into bullet points and sifted through what would be interested to someone with no experience with bees. I then wrote my first draft with only two additional major editing drafts. Through the editing process, I moved pieces of the story around and rewrote the lead. Through this process, I learned how important it is to have another person take a look at your work. Collaboration with multiple voices really helped strengthen the article and moved it in a more interesting direction. It also really keep me in line with what information I needed to explain to the reader that I had originally assumed they would understand.

The biggest surprise that came out of the interview and writing process for me was learning about why honey is so beneficial (antimicrobial, antibacterial, antiseptic, etc.) I was also surprised that Marlene was so successful in beekeeping and learning that she had started multiple hives on her own and helped get hives going for family and friends.


Kelsey Rathke is a Utah native and University of Utah Utes enthusiast. She is a senior associate in Digital Servicing for Discover Financial Services, and a junior at The University of Utah studying strategic communication. Rathke has extensive experience in corporate writing and is currently enrolled in a news-writing course. She is an honors student at The U and will be the Marketing Officer for the Crimson Transfer Honor Society for the 2018-2019 academic year.