I applied to volunteer with the National Council on Canada-Arab Relations in the hopes of gaining experience beneficial to my future. I am happy to say that my expectations were met. I began in early October, 2011 and thus far, I’ve gained skills in judging and analyzing news, expanded my writing abilities, and gained a stronger understanding of Middle East and Canadian policy.
One of my responsibilities at NCCAR is to monitor news concerning Palestine and Israel daily. I then update the website’s Daily Media Scan section on all news coming out of or about the Middle East and North Africa that other volunteers have filtered through. I’ve also had the invaluable opportunity to be trained in writing press releases. I greatly enjoyed learning how to write them and hope to continue improving. Through this internship I’ve become skilled at judging news and learnt to effectively use such programs as Google Reader and WordPress, amongst others.
I’ve also had the opportunity to update NCCAR’s media contacts list and twitter, as well as partake in the National Conference and Gala Dinner. I helped contact members and others while promoting the event, and volunteered the day of to help with registration and reporting on the workshops. I had the opportunity to meet new and important people and got to sit in for the panel discussions.
Thanks to NCCAR, I had the chance to make new contacts and gain knowledge that I would not have been able to do otherwise. I look forward to using the practical skills I’ve gained and apply them in the world of journalism.