Journalism student Amber Ainsworth heads to Norway for a summer of international storytelling

Amber Ainsworth

Amber Ainsworth stands on the sidelines at the Big House while taking photos of a University of Michigan football game for the Michigan Journal.

Amber Ainsworth has loved telling stories ever since she was a little girl. And one day she hopes her stories will help change lives.

“I really want to use what I do to help people,” said Ainsworth, editor in chief of the Michigan Journal, UM-Dearborn’s student newspaper. “I really want to document people and tell stories about individuals who may not otherwise have a voice.”

Currently a web producer intern at ClickOnDetroit.com—the website for WDIV Local 4 News—Ainsworth has written about local news, including unsolved murders and missing people, and politics. More recently, she has started to write about her passion—music.

“I’ve always wanted to be part of the music industry,” she said. “But I can’t play an instrument or sing, so concert coverage is the next best thing.”

This summer, Ainsworth will travel to Norway to complete a one-month study abroad program. She will learn about the country’s music and culture while writing for an American audience. She’s never been out of the country, so traveling to Norway will be a big step for her.

She says her time as editor in chief has prepared her for this summer’s adventure.

“I could write a book about all the things I’ve learned at the Journal,” she said. “But I think the most important thing I’ve learned is how to improvise and make decisions quickly. I’m better prepared to deal with things not going my way, and I know I can fix issues and make decisions easier and quicker than I could before.”

Previously, Ainsworth was the arts and entertainment editor for the paper, which allowed her to expand as an entertainment writer and photographer. She also was a writing intern for Awesome Mitten—a website dedicated to Michigan—and a public relations intern with the Dearborn Animal Shelter. She is currently a classroom assistant for Clinical Professor Jim Gilmore’s photojournalism course.

Ainsworth said she’s made many memories as a student, but few top covering Michigan football games for the last two seasons.

“I’m not sure I could ever put into words what it feels like to walk down the tunnel at the Big House and kneel along the sidelines with my camera for a game—it’s amazing,” said Ainsworth, who won an award from the Society of Professional Journalists-Detroit for a photo she took while covering one of the games. “Unless I shoot some games next season, I may never step on that field again, so I’ll always value that I had that opportunity.”

Ainsworth will graduate in December 2017 and said she is excited to take some time to herself and experience life.

“If I had to pick a main goal, it’d be to find a way to make money and travel the world while doing what I’m passionate about.” she said. “Knowing that no matter where I end up—as long as I’m writing and taking photos—I’ll be happy.”

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