The internship program of the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) was one of the things I actually looked forward to this semester. Considering that I am loaded with Economics classes and loads of workload in organizational work and other academics, having to spend a Monday outside of the campus is a breath of fresh air. While I try to refrain from dealing with heavy workload, I also enjoy doing stuff that are non-academic but at the same time, value-adding. This is exactly what PCIJ brought to the table.
Through the four months that we were there, we were delegated to specific tasks in order to maximize our efficiency and outputs. Personally, I would habe loved to be delegated to a committee that concerns with making publicity materials since I have a vast experience on this respect. But I was delegated to a committee that tabulates and consolidates data from numerous sources. At first, I honestly didn’t feel like doing the job. It was tiring and a rigorous process of being meticulous and very nit-picky. However, as I went through the data and vast information that is available for my viewing, I got fascianted as to how much information can be drawn from very simple occurences in society. There were metadata on the different commercials by politicians and information that I did not even know existed on events that shocked the socio-political landscape of the Philippines. Ultimately, I felt like having a hand in helping investigative journalists in PCIJ in drawing conclusions and connecting the dots in solving and analyzing certain issues.
More so, the thing that stood out for me the most was the dynamics we have built not only with my co-interns but more so, with our mentors in PCIJ. Before the internship started, one of the difficulties I had was dealing and working with other people. However, after that, I grew to have an appreciation of what it takes and what needs to be done to actually be an effective team player.
Most importantly, though, I was brought up to the reality of how a simple institution like the PCIJ can do so much in society by serving as a counter-check or checks and balances for the government. Given how the current attitudes of the exisiting administration is questionable and at best alarming, entities like the PCIJ are that of a big importance in making sure the public and the masses are informed of these. It is through these entities that the masses stay more vigilant and critical of status quo, an essential thing in having a democratic setting.
My stay in PCIJ was more than fulfilling as it was value-adding. While I do know we could have done better, it is something I would cherish and the will bring foe the rest of my journey.
SANCHEZ, Andrea Cecilia R.