Q&A: Brie Camp, environmental justice reporting intern with The Land

Brie Camp is a summer 2022 intern with The Land, through our partnership with The NewsLab at Kent State University. Recently we caught up with her to learn more about her background, why she chose journalism, and the work she’s doing with The Land.

Brianna (Brie) Camp is a summer 2022 intern with The Land, through our partnership with The NewsLab at Kent State University. Recently we caught up with her to learn more about her background, why she chose journalism, and the work she’s doing with The Land.

Tell us about yourself and what attracted you to The Land?

As a new cum laude Kent State University graduate and lifelong learner, my natural curiosity and drive to seek mutual understanding is what drew me to The Land. The work they do seems to be asking the necessary questions. Growing up, I had often gotten the sense that I should learn my place and stop asking some similar difficult questions. The opportunity to continue inquiring about the world, after graduating from the practice of asking via formal education, and to shine a light on issues of equity and empathy is one I value deeply. 

What have you been working on?

Right now, I’m working on digging into issues related to food insecurity and equity of food systems as well as lead safety affecting community health. 

How has your degree in journalism informed the work you’ve been doing?

At Kent State, our professors pushed us to get to know our communities and help uplift them. I’m not from Cleveland, or Ohio even, but I know people and care deeply for the world we want to live in. I feel that engaging in storytelling, in all kinds of ways, can be the key to reaching people’s sense of belonging in our communities and help call us to action. I aspire to be that bridge between community needs and narratives, no matter where I am. 

What has been your most valuable learning experience so far?

I know the value of hard work, but I’m also learning the value of rest and caring for ourselves and each other too. I hope to learn from my community how best to do so.  

What are your plans for after you complete the internship?

I don’t know where I’ll end up in the next few years, but I’m excited and reassured by continuing the work we need to do to create the communities we want to live in. 

What are your hobbies when you’re not reading The Land? 

I’ve always enjoyed reading, writing, cycling, and cooking as a means of quieting a restless mind. My partner and dogs keep me grounded most days. Lately, I’ve craved the outdoors and the abundant foodie culture we have in Cleveland. 

Why did you decide to major in journalism? 

I’ve always been an avid reader and writer. Storytelling is in my bones. But as I’ve grown, I feel a pull toward action and feel utilizing my skills with words as a natural way to make a difference for people, or at the very least, document our shared experience of humanity. Journalism is a tie to the responsibility I feel for service. 

What most surprised you when you began reporting your first story in the city of Cleveland or with The Land? 

Telling the stories of Cleveland feels like telling the stories of my own home more than I thought it might. The issues facing many of our communities, although different in their own ways, tell a bigger story about who we all are and what we want for ourselves. I think this mutual existence of difference is valuable and I’m honored to help facilitate those conversations.   

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