In my junior year at Oklahoma State University, I was an editor of the student newspaper and also worked as a crime reporter. During that time I became aware school administrators did not immediately report knowledge of possible criminal wrongdoing by a student to local police, and I wanted to know why.
While working on that story, which eventually spurred changes in how OSU handles reports of sexual assault, I saw firsthand the power that good journalism has to make the world a better place. Since then, being a reporter is all I’ve wanted to do.
My first day at the Tulsa World, where I also completed an internship, was about four and a half years ago as a crime reporter working nights and weekends.
Since October 2016, I’ve been assigned to cover all manner of Tulsa County District Court proceedings and have served as lead reporter for multiple high-profile trials that have brought national news outlets to our doorstep.
But while those events might draw interest beyond northeast Oklahoma, it’s those who live and work here who best know what matters to our community and how it impacts their lives.
Part of my job entails seeing people at their worst, whether it’s because they committed a crime or have been victimized in ways most people can’t truly imagine. However, it’s essential that everybody is treated with respect and dignity, no matter their background or life circumstances.
Samantha.firstname.lastname@example.org, Twitter: @samanthavicent