Joining the staff of the Lake Oswego Review and West Linn Tidings for the summer are interns Whitney Tolar, a sophomore at the University of Southern California, and Bryan T. Robinson, a junior at the University of Oregon.
'It's been a blast having these two in our office this summer,' said Tidings editor Nicole DeCosta. 'Not only do they write great stories, generate story ideas and make deadlines, they are really nice and eager to write about a variety of story topics. It will be sad to see them go back to school in the fall.'
'And did I mention that they both have amazing hair?'
n Whitney Tolar: Although she now resides in Los Angeles nine months out of the year, Tolar has had a permanent home in Lake Oswego her entire life and is enjoying being home for the summer months.
She and her family have always been familiar with the Lake Oswego Review, which is one of the reasons, Tolar said, she was excited to intern with Community Newspapers this summer.
'Throughout our childhood, my brother and I both had our names in the Lake Oswego Review at least once or twice,' she said, explaining that their softball and baseball teams were featured due to outstanding winning seasons.
'I thought that was so neat at the time. That's what I love about the Lake Oswego Review - it gives people throughout our community a chance to be in the spotlight,' Tolar said.
For that reason, 'features are definitely my favorite pieces to write,' she said. 'Not only do they allow more room for creativity, I get to learn about all the amazing things people are doing in Lake Oswego and West Linn.'
You may have already seen Tolar's work in the Review and the Tidings this summer, as she has been a part of the staff since late May.
An English major with concentrations in journalism and law, Tolar also writes for the entertainment section of USC's completely online publication, Neon Tommy.
Although her plans for after college are uncertain, Tolar said she is excited to pursue a career that incorporates writing and the media.
'Right now I'm just embracing the time I have to be a college student,' she said. 'I love to read and write, and I definitely love to learn.'
n Bryan T. Robinson: There are many ways to define West Linn resident Robinson, but when it comes to his hobbies, 'old-fashioned' may come closest. He loves to read, write, listen to music and watch art house cinema - black-and-white movies that usually have subtitles.
His infatuation with the nostalgic was part of the reason he took an internship with the Tidings this summer. Robinson doesn't know what path he wants to take, but he's certain it involves writing.
'I love to write. Stories, news, whatever it is, it just calms me down and makes me think I'm doing something right,' he said.
This 20-year-old self-proclaimed 'literary junky' said nothing will deter him from indulging in his passion for the written word.
'I have always loved to read. It's been a part of me ever since my days reading 'Harry Potter,'' he said.
When Robinson doesn't have his nose buried in a book or writing fictional short stories, he's probably listening to music.
'My record collection is all over the place. Some of the artists I've collected over a short time are Joy Division, Frank Zappa, Bruce Springsteen, Big Star, The Clash, The Doors, Talking Heads and Zoo.'
The last band, he adds with a chuckle, is a French psyche-rock, disco, R n' B outfit from the '70s.
'They are the homeliest looking dudes you'll ever see, but their music is unlike anything I've ever heard,' he said.
He also enjoys the outdoors. Wakeboarding and swimming in the summer, snowboarding in the winter and the occasional round of golf or tennis.
Although Robinson is easily interested in new activities, he always comes back to reading and writing.
He credits this to his grandfather, Wallace Pond, who taught English for 25 years. Robinson said their conversations about books spurred him to want to read and write.
Among his favorite authors are John Irving, Charles Bukowski, Hunter S. Thompson, Mark Twain and F. Scott Fitzgerald.
'Without those guys I'd be lost. I'd have no idea how to write, and instead of journalism, I'd be knee-deep in a business major,' he said.
At this he shudders, remembering back to freshman orientation, where an adviser listed the business major requirements.
As a result, he changed his major from business to journalism, which he said, 'will be immeasurably more interesting.'
While Robinson is entering his junior year he will not be returning to the campus just yet. He will instead be studying abroad in Lyon, France.
Writing stories for the Review and Tidings, he said, will help him learn from those who know the industry.
'I plan on soaking up as much as I can, and so far everyone has been very helpful,' he said.