GCIP Intern Spotlight


Harvard Student, Stuart Johnson, Completes Internship with Fulton County

Prior to interning with Fulton County, Stuart Johnson, a government student at Harvard University, was fairly familiar with county government operations. He was aware of the county police department, library, parks, and school system; however, he was not knowledgeable in the details of those departments/institutions. Through his internship in the Department of External Affairs, Johnson learned through numerous interactions and events about how the county government operates within the lives of its citizens. In the context of the external affairs department, he learned about the tools used to inform the community about what actions the county takes in order to improve citizens’ quality of life. He also learned about departments, facilities, programs, and officials that he was not aware of before, including senior centers and youth summer programs.

During the course of his internship, Johnson’s major responsibilities were to collaborate with directors, writers, and editors to produce daily informative content for Fulton county residents. He was responsible for supporting the production team in both live and post-productions projects through camera, teleprompter, and sound board operations. Lastly, he was responsible to the residents of Fulton County to provide detailed and helpful information so that they were knowledgeable about services that serve them and their communities. He reflected on going from behind the camera to in front of the camera to be an anchor on "Fulton County News Update.” He gained so much experience and expertise from directors, writers, and editors that he was no longer nervous being in front of the camera. The relationships he fostered with commissioners and their staff, personnel in other departments, as well as interactions with residents was, by far, his largest success.

Johnson’s favorite part of the internship experience was the knowledge that he gained, not just about how the county government works, but how a professional environment operates. He had previous experience with internships in the past, but the internship in the external affairs department of Fulton County was the first time that he was intimately engaged in the everyday functions of professional life. The discussions he had with coworkers and leaders provided him a clearer perspective which he did not have previously. Skills he gained during his internship were primarily the technical aspects of filming live and post-productions television programming. He gained a lot more knowledge about the video editing software "Adobe Premiere.” As he moves forward, he will be pursuing a career in law, and he believes that having this knowledge about both government and how broadcast television works will benefit him in the future.

To future interns, Johnson advises them to absolutely pursue a county internship. He would tell them that an internship is the real world experience they need in order to determine if a county career is what they want. When asked if he has a future in county government, he said yes.

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