Back in December, I was awarded the Hugh S. Sidey Experience in Political Journalism, a
scholarship sponsored by the White House Historical Association and the White House Correspondents
Association. When I received this scholarship, I genuinely had no idea what I was getting myself into, as I
was still contemplating what I was going to do in the future, and because COVID was still an obstacle in
whether or not things were going to go back to “normal.”
The scholarship includes a $5,000 award and an all-expense paid trip to Washington D.C. to
attend the WHCA dinner and to meet with other political journalists and scholarship recipients. Soon after
I received the scholarship, I was informed that it had been transitioned to a virtual experience as COVID
presented more dangers than opportunities with the trip. I didn’t mind this though because with every
negative brings many positives.
I was able to virtually connect with many journalists throughout my experience such as David
Spunt with Fox News Channel, Delia Rios with C-SPAN, and Francesca Chambers with McClathy. I was
also able to attend an all staff meeting with the WHHA and meet the other scholarship recipients through
zoom meetings with the WHCA. During these calls, I was able to talk to each journalist about life lessons
on how to get into the field of political journalism, while also being able to learn how they were able to
get to where they are today. Without the help of everyone involved, I would have never been able to learn
and grow as a journalist and as a student.
Although this experience was not the way it was planned out to be, I am still forever grateful for
the endless opportunities and new doors that it has opened for me. To the next Hugh S. Sidey scholarship
recipient, I wish you the best as you are going to have the opportunity to shine and show them what you
got! Remember, connections are what helps you grow in this crazy world. Utilize this experience and
enjoy meeting some amazing people.