Shannon Epps, a senior at Hampton University and the 2009 Aubespin winner, was a copy editing intern at the St. Petersburg Times and a business reporting intern at the Naples Daily News through the Dow Jones Newspaper Fund. She is the copy desk chief for her college paper, the Hampton Script.
Epps impressed the judges with a combination of near-perfect grades, glowing recommendations from editors and Hampton professors, a strong work record and a thoughtful essay that showed her passion for copy editing and a sophisticated understanding of what it involves.
“I believe that working in the best interest of the publication in order to build credibility and produce error-free copy is as noble and necessary an aspect of journalism as reporting,” she wrote.
Mark Wood, a senior copy editor at the St. Petersburg Times, said in his evaluation of her internship: “I have trained a number of interns over the years. Some have been very good. A few, not so good. Shannon is the best ever.”