My name is Taylor Isen. I am 17 and have been an intern at The Canadian Jewish News for the past 3-1/2 months. My time here has been an experience that I will never forget. By coming to The CJN offices every day for three hours as part of my co-op class at Thornlea Secondary School, I have learned not only about journalism and newspapers, but also about myself.
When my co-op teacher, Gus Babalis, told me about working for The CJN, I was both excited and nervous. I was happy to find somewhere that could really help me to find my path in life, but I was also a tad uneasy, because I haven’t grown up in a very religious household. Yes, my family and I celebrate the High Holidays, but I never felt quite as proud of my Jewish identity as I do after working for The CJN.
Throughout my months here, I’ve been working on creating blog posts for the newpaper’s youth-oriented Heebonics website. I have learned a lot about the Jewish world around me by writing them. I’ve written a post about Israel’s endangered wildlife, as well as one on how people are trying to bring Tel Aviv’s high-energy nightlife to Toronto events, to name just two.
Also, I have learned about a writing style that I had never been exposed to in school. It’s a more casual kind of writing, one that emphasizes quality over quantity, and the ability to be as descriptive as possible in the shortest amount of space.
The other thing that really made my time at The CJN special was that I was able to get my own pieces of work published in the newspaper. This was very exciting for me, because I felt like readers actually got to hear my voice. This is my third and final article to be published in the newspaper, and I feel blessed that I got this opportunity at the end of my high school career.
I hope that all the people that I worked with at The CJN – copy editors, reporters and web administrators – had as good a time teaching me as I had learning from them. Thank you all!