Former editor interns at Desert Sun


Photo courtesy of Estefania Moreira. From The Chaparral to The Desert Sun, Estefania Moreira continues inspiring future journalists with her passion, drive, and leadership.

From The Chaparral to Desert Sun, Estefania Moreira inspires future journalists with her passion, drive and leadership. 

It was on Dec. 13, 2020, when former Editor-in-Chief Estefania Moreira first bid her farewell to The Chaparral to begin her new role as an intern for Desert Sun, having thanked The Chaparral for the opportunity to learn and lead, in her farewell post.

Moreira has always exhibited love and interest for storytelling from a young age, amongst many other interests. With an extensive background in the performing arts, from roles in short films such as “The Convicted” and “Jane and the House of Miracles,” from her role as Grace in “Annie the Musical,” to having over 30 published stories on The Chaparral, Moreira has never turned down an opportunity from which she can learn and grow.

Despite her extensive background in the performing arts, when asked why she didn’t pursue a career within one of the industries, she said she had thought about it at some point in time but knew she had a stronger desire for storytelling and writing and would take advantage of her performance background if the opportunity arose.

When it came to recognizing the individuals at College of the Desert who truly inspired, taught and motivated her to continue being creative through her stories, Moreira expressed her gratitude to Professor Laurlile Jackson, who always encourages her students on The Chaparral to take advantage of every creative writing opportunity.

“I learned a lot from her,” Moreira said. “She was the best professor I had.”

Moreira, understanding what was needed to learn and grow, would say yes more often than no, taking on challenges she knew would lead to a successful future. Moreira said that the only negative resulting from risk is never using it as an opportunity to grow, which is something she continues to live by.

Having led The Chaparral team before she transitioned to Desert Sun amidst a raging pandemic had been a concern for Moreira during her lead as Editor-in-Chief as COVID-19 regulations and campus closures would limit potential stories. When asked how the pandemic has influenced journalists, Moreira said she felt the start of the Trump administration, who’d oftentimes displayed their lack of trust in the media during Donald Trump’s presidency, had caused many Americans to distrust the media. 

Since the start of the pandemic where the world suddenly found itself navigating stay-at-home orders, social distancing and remote learning, media outlets had to adapt quickly to this new normal, placing a heightened focus on online journalism and finding ways of reaching out to readers, placing an importance on the need for more credibility and trust is just another step in restoring America’s trust in the media, especially now under the Biden administration.

When starting her role as an intern for Desert Sun, Moreira said she was not met with intimidation or hesitation despite how differently the newspaper ran compared to The Chaparral and one of the youngest on Desert Sun’s team.

“I wasn’t scared or intimidated,” Moreira said. “I always knew I could write and was excited about the opportunity.”

The freedom that a student lead newspaper has to offer where one chooses their topic, Moreira stresses the importance of a journalist having the ability to write multiple topics of interest and make any story interesting regardless of its topic.

Moreira’s next project will take her on a journey through the Eastern parts of the Coachella Valley, where North Shore, Oasis, Thermal and Meca are located.

“There’s not much known about the Eastern parts of the Coachella Valley,” said Moreira. “How the pandemic has impacted those communities hasn’t been reported.” 

In the meantime, Moreira will continue to provide local coverage and perspective on the pandemic.

In terms of where she sees herself in the future, Moreira believes she will be in a good place, with prospects of transferring to either a private or Ivy League school where she’ll continue learning and growing.

“I see myself doing something related to television,” Moreira said.

For more on Moreira’s published work, check out Desert Sun.