When Powerful Players Clash, We Need the Free Press More Than Ever

Meet the hell-raising Mother Jones fellows who keep us accurate and fresh.

Every six months, Mother Jones welcomes a new class of up-and-coming journalists to learn the craft of investigative reporting through a rigorous fact-checking program.It’s not easy for fellows to balance helping Mother Jones staffers fact check articles while developing their own news stories, but our new class is up to the challenge. Meet one of our Ben Bagdikian editorial fellows, Meagan Day:

“A free, credible, and critical press is foundational to democracy — especially when powerful people disagree.”

Name: Meagan Day

Hometown: San Antonio, Texas

Education: BA, Oberlin College ’12. MA, Goldsmiths, University of London ‘13

How did you get into journalism? I’ve been working for magazines since I was in my early twenties. I’ve been a writer and editor at the literary criticism magazine Full Stop since I was an undergraduate, and I started contributing essays to publications around the web—n+1, The New Inquiry —in the years after I received my master’s’ degree in cultural studies. During my work as a staff writer for Timeline, a publication that connects past to present by bringing historical context to today’s news, I found my interests shifting toward reporting and news coverage. And I wrote a book called Maximum Sunlight, which involved interviewing lots of people — work that I found stimulating and rewarding. By the time I was 27, I knew I wanted to be a journalist.

Why is being a journalist important? A free, credible, and critical press is foundational to democracy — especially when powerful people disagree.

What got you reading Mother Jones? I grew up in a red state, but my parents leaned left. When I began to discover that I leaned even further left than they did, I started looking for media that could back me up. I was a teenager when I first plucked an issue of Mother Jones off the newsstands. On more than a few occasions, what I read in MoJo helped me hold my own against peers who represented the Texan conservative consensus.

What’s one thing you’re excited about doing at Mother Jones? Learning how to find and decipher documents that lead to original, informative stories.

What’s a podcast that you’d recommend? Criminal

What’s one song you can’t get out of your head? Cocteau Twins, “Cherry-Coloured Funk”

One TV show we must watch now? Fleabag

An article that changed the way you thought? Pamela Colloff’s “96 Minutes,” Texas Monthly, August 2006

Each week, we’ll bring you a new profile of our fellows. Check our Medium page for more.

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