While studying at the UA, Jorge Encinas wrote "Despite Rhetoric, Refugees Are a Humanitarian Concern" for the Arizona Sonora News Service, which publishes the work of School of Journalism students.
Jorge Encinas knew covering the Trump administration as part of his internship at National Public Radio would be challenging, but even he admits he might have underestimated the task.
"Right now, it is a busy environment," said Encinas, a recent graduate of the University of Arizona School of Journalism's master's degree program. "There is always something to look into or track to see if it could become a potential story as things change and new policies are announced."
Encinas has stayed plenty busy developing sources and story ideas after receiving the internship through the Chip Quinn Scholars Program for Diversity in Journalism.
Through April 21, he is working in Washington, D.C., on NPR's Code Switch team, which produces stories and podcasts to explore "overlapping themes of race, ethnicity and culture, and how they play out in people’s lives and communities," according to the news agency.
For his first byline, Encinas co-authored an inauguration story, "As Trump Is Sworn In, Supporters Debate His Role in Healing Racial Wounds."
Encinas roamed the National Mall during the inauguration. He said his reporting backed up aerial photos that showed the crowd appeared smaller than it was for the 2009 Obama inauguration, but Trump administration officials said the media misrepresented the size.
He also produce a story on Feb. 2, "There's a Long, Ignominious Trail of Bans, Registries and Forced Relocation," following Trump's much-publicized executive order, which caused nationwide protests for temporarily banning entry into the United States for citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries and refugees from around the world.
Encinas, 34, is a U.S. Army veteran who served two tours in northern Iraq. As a UA senior, he received the 2015 SBS Perserverance Award from the UA College of Social and Behavioral Sciences.
"Jorge added so much to my journalism ethics class with his thoughtful comments and insightful papers," said Linda Lumsden, an associate professor of journalism, who nominated Encinas for the honor. "He's very smart, diligent and modest."
Encinas completed the School of Journalism's Accelerated Master’s Program in December, and his master's project was titled "Confiscated and Missing: A Flawed Process Fails to Return Migrants' Possessions."
"Ultimately, my goal is to get a job in print journalism doing international reporting or science writing," he said. "I believe both provide a continuing opportunity to serve the public and protect freedom."