Erik Kolsrud, right, meets new UA President Robert Robbins at the College of SBS Showcase along with Amanda Oien and Prof. Michael McKisson.
Kolsrud talks at last spring's "Mexico: The Storytellers," a presentation by Prof. Celeste González de Bustamante's Press and Latin America class at the UA Library's Special Collections.
Erik Kolsrud practices flying one of the school's drones. Prof. Celeste González de Bustamante is at right.
Whether Erik Kolsrud pursues law or journalism after graduation, he knows covering the Arizona Legislature will help him in both careers.
The senior has been named the 2018 Don Bolles Fellowship winner. In the spring, he will report from the Legislature in Phoenix for the school’s Arizona Sonora News media service, under the guidance of UA professor Terry Wimmer.
The fellowship is named after Bolles, an investigative reporter for The Arizona Republic who was killed in a car bombing in 1976. The award has been handed out by the UA School of Journalism since 1977.
“Don Bolles was a man who care deeply about getting to the very bottom of the issues he covered, from land deals to bribery,” Kolsrud said in his application letter. “His dying words served to convict the man who killed him and opened up investigations that changed law in Arizona.
“He is an inspiration to me and every other reporter in Arizona.”
Last spring, Kolsrud wrote stories for Arizona Sonora News, El Independiente and The Tombstone Epitaph. His story on the border wall being built in Naco ran on the front page of the Arizona Daily Star.
“This last year also included time learning about international law, reporting on border issues and court stories, as well as a host of other subjects that will prepare me for a career in law or reporting on government activities,” Kolsrud said.
The Bolles Fellowship provides expenses, housing and a stipend for Kolsrud to live in Phoenix in the spring. It is funded through a donation by 1982 UA alumna Joni Hirsch Blackman and the Armin and Esther Hirsch Foundation.
Here's a Q&A with Kolsrud:
Q. What do you hope to get out of the Bolles Fellowship?
Having the chance to cover the Arizona State Legislature is a huge honor for me as a student journalist and an Arizonan. I toured the Capitol when I was in Fourth grade, and I never thought I would one day be working there. The Don Bolles Fellowship presents an opportunity for me to really see and understand how our government works on the floor, a view I hope I can share with my readers.