Meet the Fellows: Jessica Weiss

I met Jess while working at Univision. I quickly realized that our approach to journalism is very similar and that we were able to have very honest conversations about the profession, including the things that we love about it and those that frustrate us. In addition to a being a friend and badass journalist from whom I’ve learned a lot, I’ve found in Jess an honest and supportive colleague.

Based on some of our previous conversations about journalism–namely the idea that feeling fear as a journalist is a difficult topic to talk about–I wanted to know what she felt the HEFAT training helped her “punch in the face” (figuratively speaking).

This is what she said (edited for brevity).

“By nature I’m a fearful person, in my upbringing everything was about being safe and not putting yourself out there. Journalism is a profession that naturally tests those boundaries that society has imposed on you. It has pushed me to have conversations that I would have never had or meet people beyond my realm of understanding. And I really enjoy that about it.

This type of training (HEFAT) and similar experiences in the profession push you to be confident to face your fears and that’s something I love about journalism.”

– Andrea Patiño Contreras