WISH Spotlight: Stephanie DeLateur, California State University, Fullerton

By Patrick Slevin| July 12, 2019

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Stephanie poses by the WISH program center sign (photo by Jamaal Whitehead).

Stephanie DeLateur is excited about living her dream of interning in the nation’s capital. She is a journalism major and a history minor at California State University, Fullerton finishing her last year. Stephanie’s current public relations internship at WISH has helped her gain crucial work experience, as well as growing her network of opportunities that will help her achieve her career goals to work in D.C. after graduation.

The road that has led Stephanie to Washington hasn’t been without its challenges. Stephanie has a stutter that she has had since birth. For some, this would be seen as a handicap or impediment, but Stephanie has never seen it that way and she has learned to turn her speech challenge into a strength that has made her journey that much more rewarding.

When asked about what challenges she has experienced from her stutter, Stephanie is a matter of fact in her response, “When it comes to voicing my thoughts, I’m a bit slower, but I’m able to communicate just fine. Some of the people that I converse with feel it necessary to complete my sentences, thinking that’s being helpful. I understand what they’re trying to do, but it can get annoying sometimes,” said Stephanie. “I’ve become used to this over the years and it’s actually helped me grow stronger, resilient and empathic to others.”

“Because of my stutter, I have found myself being a better listener and really hearing what others have to say. Better listening skills is definitely helping me be a better writer and communicator, which is why I’m excited about pursuing a career in communications as a journalist,” said Stephanie. “I enjoy talking to people and hearing what they have to say, and to have my name attached to something I wrote that is visible to the public is amazing.”

This isn’t the first time Stephanie has written about her stutter. She first wrote a column in The Daily Titan, Cal State Fullerton’s student newspaper, which has attracted almost 1,700 views since being published in December 2018. The column can be read here: Column: Stuttering doesn’t define who I am

During her internship at WISH, she is responsible for writing weekly blog posts and electronically-sent newsletters.

“I am thrilled to be able to intern in DC. I feel very fortunate to be doing what I love and where I love to be…” Stephanie said. 

When Stephanie is not working at the WISH offices, she is exploring the nation’s capital. She spends her free time exploring the different museums and memorials around the city and working on homework for class.

She has blogged about some of her exploits. Here are a few links to those blogs:

National Museum of Natural History exhibit–WISH Intern Experience

Touching Discoveries in Washington, D.C.

Stephanie was born and raised in California, but she wants to work in D.C. She is banking on her WISH internship to truly change her life for the better. She has the support not only of the WISH staff but the WISH network of over 25,000 alumni.

She has met so many current and former interns that she knows she has a family waiting for her after graduation.

“I am thrilled to be able to intern in DC. I feel very fortunate to be doing what I love and where I love to be, and because of my internship, I get to learn some public relations skills along the way. I have never taken a single day for granted,” Stephanie said.

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