Trinity Hall Alumna Published by U.S. News & World Report

Angelica Niedermeyer ‘20 Selected for Unique Journalism Experience in Thailand to Raise Awareness for Impact of COVID-19 on Tourism

By Paige Jaenicke, Editor-in-Chief

Angelica Niedermeyer, Class of 2020 (Photo courtesy of Trinity Hall Royal Record)

Angelica Niedermeyer ‘20 has had a passion for journalism since she joined the Trinity Hall Tribune as a freshman staff writer.  In fact, the Trinity Hall alumna, and current junior at Manhattan College, claims that it is likely her interest in publications would not exist if it had not been for her decision to become a member of the Tribune.

However, it was not until Niedermeyer’s investigative article was published by a global digital media platform that she fully grasped the power of and potential for her writing.  After being selected by the International Women’s Media Foundation’s Round Earth Media Program to spend three weeks in Bangkok, Thailand, to complete a report about the global pandemic’s effect on tourism, Niedermeyer worked with a small group of students from Minnesota to compose a small pitch for the program director, Mary Stucky, to share with various news outlets.  During their layover flights in Seattle and South Korea, the student writers from the project worked collaboratively to gather research, background information, and context regarding the impact of COVID-19 on Thailand’s tourism industry prior to their travels.  Focusing primarily on primates, tigers, and elephants, subunits within the band of students met with native journalists upon their arrival to Bangkok who provided helpful resources and were conducive to the language barrier.

During her time in the “Land of Smiles,” Niedermeyer focused specifically on elephant tourism, visiting various elephant sanctuaries throughout Thailand.  Most of her observation took place on Phuket Island, a popular location for tourism.  While there, the Manhattan college student witnessed a large number of visitors engage in the “cultural norm” of sitting on the heads and trunks of baby elephants.  Shocked by this mistreatment that has been pegged as ethically acceptable, she partnered with a Thai correspondent who enlisted upon the help of a member of the Thai Parliament, a Progressive.  The government official verified the claim of animal abuse, and Niederymeyer has since confirmed that captive elephants have undergone a substantial 135% increase in Thailand.  In order to raise awareness for the future protection and proper care of the species, Niedermeyer composed an article, “Thailand’s Tourism Rebound Puts Elephant Abuse in the Spotlight”, that has been published by U.S. News & World Report, its reporting supported by the Round Earth Media Program.

This accomplishment will be the first of many for the young journalist, who is currently in the process of applying for internships with similar publications and clippings.  She advises current students- either interested in pursuing journalism or who are members of the Trinity Hall Tribune- to write at every available opportunity.  She shared that it is important to ask the right questions and interview as many sources as possible in order to acquire the best angle.

“Becoming involved with stories that are truly meaningful to you is always rewarding,” said Niedermeyer.  The Trinity Hall community cannot wait to see what the alumna plans on writing about next!

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