Our City Desk covers all the issues and developments that take place in Evanston. You don't need to have any prior knowledge of city government to get involved, and you'll be able to quickly learn about the issues that residents care most about.
As a City reporter, you'll be able to take stories on one of many beats including City Council, education, downtown, police, state politics and social justice. Working for the City Desk allows you to get off campus and explore the city surrounding Northwestern — and you might even get chances to travel into Chicago for stories.
Full time staff members aren't allowed to report and write for the Opinion Desk in the same quarter. However, if you're interested in joining and wanted to try out both reporting and opinion writing, you'll be able to for your first quarter as long as you're not reporting and writing on the same topics (ex. covering City Council and writing a column about it, reporting stories on Evanston schooling and writing columns about it, etc.).
On the city desk, you'll have the opportunity to report on the issues you'll learn about in the classroom and watch them they play out in real time. You'll be able to speak with state representatives and senators while covering Illinois politics relevant to Evanston. Reporters have been the first to write about important issues within business and city government, as well as education like college readiness disparities for black students and Title IX enforcement. They've also reported on issues within criminal justice including police investigations and misconduct.
You'll also be able to pitch stories outside of your beat like former City Editor Julia Esparza did when she wrote about a Salvadoran family who took refuge in an Evanston church while their oldest child was held in a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention center.
Evanston can be a complicated city with a lot going on. Through going to City Council meetings, local organizations' events and developing relationships with residents and business owners, you'll quickly learn about what keeps the city moving and be able to find stories affecting a wide-ranging group of residents. You'll also gain a better understanding of how city and statewide issues have impacts on an individual level, like when fall Print Managing Editor Caity Henderson looked into Illinois residents' concerns over Gov. J.B. Pritzker's rollout of an increased minimum wage.
When an Evanston high school's girls varsity volleyball team members began taking a knee during the national anthem, former City Editor Rishika Dugyala looked into the numerous students at the school who committed to doing so through the fall. Her story was one of many our writers have taken comprehensive approaches to issues affecting Evanston residents. Reporters have also gone in-depth on what activist and community groups are doing in Evanston, a winter snow emergency, residents' push to build a neighborhood school in a historic city building and parent allegations that Evanston school districts fail to support students with disabilities, among many other stories.