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Cynic news editor Katy Cardin continues UVM’s USA Today tradition

December 2, 2013
Katy Cardin Works

Cynic editor Katy Cardin (right) works in the Cynic newsroom this fall with Cynic photo editor Phoebe Sheehan.

Pretty soon, The Vermont Cynic might need to set up an alumni room at USA Today.

Katy Cardin, the just-departed Cynic news editor, this semester became the fourth USA Today collegiate correspondent to come out of the Cynic newsroom in just two years.

And she’s already made an unexpected Cynic connection.

In a recent conference call with other college-age writers from around the country, a USA Today editor announced that the correspondents would have the chance to chat with one of Gannett’s rising stars: Natalie DiBlasio, a breaking news reporter and host of Newsbreak with Natalie DiBlasio.

This particular rising star also happens to have been the Cynic’s editor-in-chief in 2011 and the first Cynic journalist to join the USA Today College team. Since then, Cynic editors Becky Hayes and Devin Karambelas have taken on the collegiate correspondent role.

In the conference call, DiBlasio spoke about her time at UVM, saying that “she got her start in a UVM news writing class, and that really lit the fire under her for journalism,” Cardin said.

As a collegiate correspondent, Cardin writes college-specific features for a national audience, typically on the USA Today College website but sometimes on the newspaper’s main website.

Writing for the nation’s highest-circulation newspaper has it’s benefits, Cardin said.

When she sends emails with “USA Today article” in the subject header, top officials of national organizations tend to return her messages immediately, she said. She recently sent out a tweet asking aspiring politicians to contact her for a story she was working on: USA Today retweeted her message, and she said she received close to 30 responses within an hour.

“I’ve had a good chance to get a lot of really cool sources,” she said, “which obviously makes stories better.”

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