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Local student Madison Staten hopes to create a connection with readers through her writing this summer.

SPOKESMAN PHOTO: LESLIE PUGMIRE HOLE - Madison Staten grew up in the southwest metro area and feels her familiarity with the area will offer insights into Wilsonvilles character and concerns. While childhood heroes usually take the form of Superman or Wonder Woman, Madison Staten's hero was always 60 Minutes Correspondent Andy Rooney. Staten, the newest intern for Pamplin Media Group, fell in love with the field of journalism after listening to Rooney's televised columns each week.

"Rooney's attention to detail and ability to invoke an emotional connection with his viewers inspired me to want to do the same," Staten says. "Through my writing I want be a voice for those who otherwise would not have a platform to speak."

A graduate of West Linn High School, Staten is now a journalism major at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University. She volunteers at ASU's oldest news publication, The State Press, and works as a student ambassador for the school.

"The Walter Cronkite School teaches all of its students the importance of truthful and objective reporting in the face of a shifting media landscape," Staten says. "It is an honor to be able to attend a school that embodies the same strict moral code that Walter Cronkite himself had."

Staten is excited to work as an intern for the Wilsonville Spokesman this summer.

"I am blessed enough to tell the stories of people in my own community, in the place where I first discovered my love of journalism," Staten says. "I am so thankful to be able to work and learn from the seasoned reporters at Pamplin Media. Their dedication to the regions they cover makes me proud to be a citizen of West Linn, and I am excited to be able to work alongside them now."

Staten is thankful for the opportunity to hit the ground running this summer and cannot wait to report on both the people and events in the Wilsonville area.

"I love being able to talk with Wilsonville residents that come from all walks of life," Staten says. "I love being able to gain perspective by listening to people that have unique life experiences. It helps my stories to stay objective, and I am able to gain personal perspective along the way."

Above all, Staten is grateful for the learning experience that being a summer intern brings.

"As a journalism student, it is my job to constantly evolve and get better at my chosen craft," Staten says. "I want to do my job to the best of my ability and create a meaningful connection with my readers."

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