Hi! I’m Melissa

With a passion for writing and the power of storytelling, I am a 22-year-old Afro-Latina and California-based journalist with a background in print, digital and multi-media journalism.

Born and raised in Riverside, California, I spent middle school and high school in a small village of Westchester County, New York. My family relocated back to California while I finished my undergraduate degree at Northeastern University on the East Coast.

I am biracial, bicoastal and bilingual. My mother immigrated to the U.S. from Northern Mexico to go to college, and my dad is a Detroit native and proud Black American descended from African ancestry.

My upbringing in a multiculural household founded a love and appreciation for different experiences. It is what fuels my earnest dedication to diversity and equality today. My experience uniquely allows me to explore various formats of journalism as the mediums to tell important stories from a diversity of perspectives.

In the summer of 2019, I spent two months in London completing a documentary filmmaking course and learning about English culture. Alongside a group of classmates, we produced a documentary about the status of climate change activism in the U.K.

During the life-changing coronavirus pandemic, I spent a gap year maintaining my health and safety alongside my family. In 2022, I rejoined my peers for in-person classes, and completed my Bachelor of Arts degree and minors this past August.

At the end of my academic career at Northeastern, I had created a well-rounded portfolio in various mediums of journalism. My work delves into the topics of race and gender, culture, lifestyle, current events, politics, activism and more. Yet it is my vested interest in social issues that is best reflected not only in my writing, but the collaborative leadership roles I undertake.

In print and digital journalism, I advanced from news correspondent, to columnist, to Opinions Editor at The Huntington News. Despite branching out from the independent student newspaper, I occasionally returned to my recurring role as copyeditor for their weekly content.

Furthermore, my work is featured in several print issues of The Avenue Magazine and their online blog. For both spring and fall semesters of 2020, I became involved with WOOF Magazine, Northeastern’s only lifestyle magazine. This came on the heels of my return from my first co-op, where I worked at the New York Bureau of NBC News at 30 Rockefeller Plaza. I was the only intern for the Specials team through both the summer and fall of 2019.

With coffee always in hand, my spare time is spent journaling, reading my current favorite series, “Throne of Glass”, by Sarah J. Maas, binge-watching true crime shows on Netflix, or fueling various creative projects I have in queue.

I am active on Twitter @melissajowells and you can check out my Instagram feed @ctrlmel.

Email me at melijwells99@gmail.com or message me on Linkedin!

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