Your First Job in News

What is it like to work your first job in a newsroom? Hear from three people working at entry-level NBCUniversal News Group positions – Nailah Allen, an NBCUniversal Page for MSNBC’s “All In with Chris Hayes,” Samantha Avila, a desk assistant for NBC News’ Washington Bureau, and Lauryn Harriford, graphics production assistant for MSNBC’s “Hallie Jackson Reports.” Watch the video above or read additional questions below.


How do you balance your work and personal life?  

Nailah Allen: I try my best to balance my work life and personal life. I live on Long Island, so by the time I make it home, it’s about 10:30 p.m. – the day is pretty much over. Most of my work-life balance happens on the weekends and mornings. 

Lauryn Harriford: When it comes to work-life balance, I can honestly say that it’s one of the best things about my position. At the end of every workday, I’m free. I never go home with a weight on my shoulders, I never go home thinking about what’s going to happen tomorrow. Every day is like a brand-new day, like a second chance, if that makes sense. 

Samantha, what’s your favorite part of the desk assistant program?  

Samantha Avila: Every rotation comes with a new opportunity to interact with different teams, departments, shows, anchors – people that I grew up watching on TV. It’s a really cool opportunity. But I think printing scripts for news anchors is probably my all-time favorite, because I get to see firsthand the amount of time and effort it takes to put together a show – the production value, the journalism. It inspires me to aspire to that level and hopefully match that one day. 

How does your role fit into the larger NBCUniversal News Group?  

Avila: Now that I train new desk assistants, I’ve realized that everything we do is a crucial part of the entire NBCUniversal News Group. A lot of people in this building started as desk assistants and moved on to different positions. That is inspiring, because one day I can do the same.