Caught in the Headlines


Journalism is a vocation that gets into the blood of those lucky enough to cover the news for a living. Its lure can be infectious, as can the accompanying adrenaline rush. Monica Echeverri knows that all too well.

“I was always fascinated with news issues, politics and what was going on in foreign countries,” she explains, recalling that her interest began at an unusually young age. “It feeds off my curiosity of world history.”

These days, the junior communication major at Alvernia is working to turn her lifelong fascination with news and world politics into a career as a foreign correspondent or news anchor at a major television outlet.

And Echeverri is using every tool available to make her ambitious dream a reality. After enrolling in Alvernia’s Washington Center program, she paid a visit to the Associated Press Washington, D.C. bureau (whose director of news operations and finance teaches her communications law class). She was even able to make an impression on one of her news idols, CNN news anchor Candy Crowley. She met Crowley at the Washington Center’s annual gala where Crowley invited her to visit CNN and to explore a possible internship.

“I’ve even gotten into acting with the Alvernia theater,” she says, noting that stage skills can transfer to the small screen for broadcast television.

With a father who hails from Colombia and mother who is a Peruvian native, growing up as a first-generation American has had some surprising advantages for Echeverri. She speaks fluent English and Spanish, learned some French in high school, studied Italian at Alvernia and is currently working to teach herself Mandarin and Korean.

“I adapt easily and really embrace different people and different customs,” says Echeverri.

Last spring, Echeverri put her cultural skills to the test during a two-week trip to China, serving as a program ambassador for the Alvernia Alpha Group initiative. She and fellow student Kyle Covington were the first participants in the program, which aims to attract Chinese students to study in the United States, and allows American students and faculty the opportunity to explore scholarship in China.

After her Far East excursion, Echeverri headed straight to an internship at FP1 Strategies, a top Washington-based consulting firm that helps local, regional and national political candidates manage their campaigns for office — from websites and ads to film and social media.

To secure the role, Echeverri worked through the Washington Center, which paired her with a number of organizations. She chose to interview with FP1 from a long list of possibilities, and landed the job, where she focuses on creating and measuring digital advertising.

And true to form, Echeverri didn’t pick FP1 because it was easy. “I’m not well versed enough in politics, so I want to learn more,” she explains. “I’m also not tech savvy enough, and it has become necessary for the journalism field — so I’m trying to broaden my skills as much as possible.”

And once again, her language skills are being put to the test. “We try to reach out to as many people as possible through social media, so it’s been neat to see how translating messaging into Spanish can make an impact,” she says.

Her experiences in China inspired her to study abroad next semester. She is considering South Korea or Spain, where, she says, she will brush up on her language skills, possibly film a research documentary and immerse herself in yet another culture!

PH: Monica Echeverri
Twitter Logo


social icons

Information for: Parents & Family Alumni Faculty & Staff Current Students
Contact Us Directory Employment A-Z Index Tech Support Privacy Policy
© 2016 Alvernia University
Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ YouTube RSS Feed Pinterest Instagram tumblr Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ RSS Feed