by RILEY SNYDER
If there’s one thing that I’ve learned about myself during my very short career in journalism, it’s that I love to cover politics. Over last summer, I did everything from arguing with editors at my internship on the value of driving hundreds of miles to cover a candidate’s stump speech, to doing some of the area’s only coverage on school board elections, and live-tweeting City Council meetings for hours on end. I have an insatiable appetite for covering elections, governments, and everything in between.
And so when I first saw the flyer for the Nevada Media Alliance, my interest was piqued, and sure enough, I was on the road to Carson City bright and early on February 4 for the start of the legislative session. Though I’ve been actively tweeting about Nevada politics for the better part of two years, it’s something else entirely to walk into the actual press office and see all of the journalists I’ve been reading and following for years. The Nevada Press Corps are small in number, but huge in talent, and I’ve always admired their work ethic in covering what Jon Ralston calls the “Gang of 63.”
Even though I’m sure that the excitement will dissipate as the session drags on, being on press row in the Assembly chambers was a hectic jungle of television cameras, random equipment and what seemed like just about every journalist in Nevada. I loved the chaos—I was tweeting along with everyone, sending pictures and audio to Media Alliance partner and KUNR reporter, Kate McGee, and just being in the midst of what will be the biggest news for the next 120 days.
It’s a fabulous learning opportunity, buttressed by the friendliness of reporters in the capitol and openness of legislators in both chambers. Though I’ve only been in the state for three years, I’ve slowly been enchanted by what Nevada has to offer in the world of journalism. There’s a reason that I constantly bug freshmen and sophomores at UNR to change their major to journalism; there are just so many opportunities and so much fun to have.