In the summer of 2018, I was one of 13 students who got the opportunity to become a part of the Sports Journalism Institute, an organization that focuses on increasing the diversity in newsrooms across the nation.

This program was essential in molding me into the journalist I’m becoming. The instructors — Leon Carter, Greg Lee and Sandy Rosenbush — challenged my class in every way imaginable, giving us an accurate depiction of a newsroom experience.

Mike Curtis covers the Kansas City Royals-Minnesota Twins game on Monday, May 28, 2018.

We spent 10 days in Columbia, Mo., where we held classes at the University of Missouri. From being tested daily on current events and sports news, attending a Kansas City Royals game and simply honing our deadline writing, each activity helped us grow as journalists.

The 10-day bootcamp gave me the tools I needed in order to be successful at my internship site, the Knoxville News Sentinel.

To read more about my experience, click here.