November/December 2016 Cape Cod Life Magazine

A Crash Course in Covering the Cape

Cape Cod Life  /  November/December 2016 /

Writer: Matthew J. Gill

There must be something in the water. Every summer Cape Cod Life Publications is lucky to have a number of talented local interns seemingly wash ashore to work with us from May until mid-to-late August. The interns are generally college students who are majoring in journalism, or communications, or history, and they arrive at our door with enthusiasm and determination—and smiles the size of Sandy Neck. While with us, they take on a variety of the tasks one might imagine take place in a magazine office: from writing about upcoming events and searching for unique local products and foods, to fact-checking lengthy articles about artists, outdoor activities, and heck, sometimes even erosion.

In the paragraphs to follow, this year’s much-appreciated (and missed!) crop of Cape Cod Life interns share a little about their experience with us this summer.

– Matthew Gill

Michelle Atwood

Summer interns

I am so grateful to have had this opportunity. As I only moved to Cape Cod just over a year ago, this internship allowed me to familiarize myself with fascinating knowledge about the Cape and Islands, ranging from some of the “Best” restaurants to some little-known Cape Cod history. I also cherished the opportunity to put my love for writing and research to use in a professional setting. I’m so thankful to everyone at Cape Cod Life for making my time here fun, interesting, and invaluable! A resident of Bourne, Michelle Atwood is a student at Wellesley College.

Paige Biviano

A Crash Course in covering the Cape, November/December Cape Cod Life |

After a six-week internship at Cape Cod Life—and with local photographer Dan Cutrona—I can definitely say it was the best decision to intern with this magazine. Through the many people I interacted with on the Cape, I gained more photography skills than I ever expected to, and plan to use these skills throughout my career. Although learning more about photography was great, I do have to say one of the best things that happened to me here was having one of my photos published as a centerfold in the summer issue of Cape Cod HOME! Paige is a student at Morrisville State College in Morrisville, New York.

Grace Ballenger

A Crash Course in covering the Cape, November/December Cape Cod Life |

The best part of my internship has been seeing what tasks are involved in the everyday production of a magazine. I’ve learned that magazine life can lead you to do very diverse and sometimes unusual things in a single day. One of my favorite assignments was accompanying a writer on an interview at a house we were featuring in Cape Cod HOME. It turned out the house was just minutes away from where I live—and absolutely gorgeous—but I never would have known about it otherwise! I love that sense of discovering new things. A Falmouth resident, Grace is studying English and Spanish at Wellesley College.

Mackenzie Campbell

A Crash Course in covering the Cape, November/December Cape Cod Life |

This internship was an experience I will remember for the rest of my life. The summer flew by; however, I was able to work closely with the staff and meet outstanding people. I will be looking out for specific projects I worked on in upcoming issues. No matter the size, no matter the workload, everything goes toward your education, and I cannot thank the staff enough for the lessons I will take with me as I head back to school this fall. Thank you again for such an amazing opportunity. A resident of Sandwich, Mackenzie Campbell studies journalism at Quinnipiac University.

Catherine Kierce

A Crash Course in covering the Cape, November/December Cape Cod Life |

Interning for Cape Cod Life has been an exciting endeavor in my journalism career. Tasks assigned to us, including fact checking, information gathering, and even writing my own pieces, have each been fresh, exciting, and unlike anything I have previously completed. My work for student newspapers and online publications prepared me well for Cape Cod Life, and I leave thankful knowing my time here has primed me for further journalism work in the future. A resident of Yarmouth Port, Catherine is a student at Salve Regina University, majoring in communications with minors in gender studies and marketing.

Matthew Harris

A Crash Course in covering the Cape, November/December Cape Cod Life |

Interning at Cape Cod Life was one of the greatest decisions I ever made. Not only did the experience provide an opportunity for hands-on expertise in the publishing field, it also opened doors in other, related landscapes. Cape Cod LIFE editor, Matt Gill, was incredibly welcoming and provided a wealth of information about the Cape. Every week he’d have some new assignment for us to tackle, such as fact checking, editing, and even contributing our own content to the magazines. I was sad to leave. A resident of East Falmouth, Matt Harris is majoring in history and international studies at Endicott College.

Emily McMahon

A Crash Course in covering the Cape, November/December Cape Cod Life |

My summer at Cape Cod Life was insightful and interesting. Before I started, I was intimidated by making phone calls, assuming I would be annoying whomever I was contacting, but I soon learned this is seldom true. Those who agree to be interviewed are often passionate about the products, projects, and stories they are sharing. This was definitely the case when I interviewed Peter Murray at the Cape Playhouse in Dennis. He had so many facts and stories he wanted to share it felt more like a conversation than an interview. A resident of West Barnstable, Emily studies visual communications at the University of South Carolina.

Maeve Mudie

A Crash Course in covering the Cape, November/December Cape Cod Life |

I was so excited to be a part of Cape Cod Life this summer. Whether it was writing, fact checking, conducting interviews, or going on photo shoots, every day was a new experience. The staff was so welcoming and willing to accept me as part of the team. My favorite part was definitely meeting and talking to different Cape Codders. Although I am a Cape native, I learned about different trades, events, and art the Cape has to offer. I am heartbroken that another Cape Cod summer has come to an end. However, I am hopeful for the future and thankful for my time at Cape Cod Life. Maeve Mudie is a junior at Fordham University, where she studies communications and Spanish; this year she is studying abroad in Barcelona!

Rachel Walman

A Crash Course in covering the Cape, November/December Cape Cod Life |

The driving force behind my desire to be a journalist is to inspire others to find and explore what they may not have otherwise. Through this internship, I was able to write about the place where I have grown up—Cape Cod. I also had the opportunity to contribute to the magazine directly, not just fact-checking and researching articles, but eventually writing a piece of my own. Rachel Walman of Buzzards Bay attends the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, where she studies English and communications.

In 2016 Rachel Boissonneault and Meaghan Donnelly also completed internships at Cape Cod Life Publications.

Matthew J. Gill

Matthew Gill is the former editor of Cape Cod LIFE and Cape Cod ART magazines. A graduate of U-Mass Dartmouth, Matthew has worked as a journalist since 2003 and has written on topics ranging from the sinking of Nantucket’s whale ship Essex and the history of the Barnstable-Falmouth Thanksgiving football rivalry, to the Cotuit Rowing Club, Provincetown’s Art’s Dune Tours, and more! A relative newcomer when it comes to the Cape, Matt and his wife Melissa just celebrated a Cape Cod-themed wedding.