The562 Internship Program Welcomes Biggest Class Ever For 2023-24 is thrilled to announce our biggest internship class ever, with 11 Long Beach Unified School District students selected from a record-setting group of nearly 50 applicants. The interns were selected after a competitive application and interview process, with a high level of aptitude that forced us to expand from our normal internship class size of eight students.

As part of our partnership with the LBUSD, these are paid internships.

The 11 interns will train under our experienced and award-winning team of local journalists and receive hand-on experience. They’ll produce articles, videos, and photo galleries, helping to cover the diverse Long Beach sports scene.

In addition to the financial support from the LBUSD, the internship program (and its expansion to 11 students) is made possible thanks to generous sponsorships from the Hoy family, the JuJu Foundation, David Cooper, Robert Booth, and Elgato. Their sponsorship of our interns helps to pay for equipment and the costs of training and supervising interns as well as the production of content.

“The opportunity to work with these young journalists is one of our favorite parts of our job,” said co-founders Mike Guardabascio and JJ Fiddler in a statement. “We were very impressed by these students during the interview process, and we can’t wait to see what they’re able to accomplish this year and beyond. This group of students wonderfully showcases Long Beach’s talent and diversity, and we’re excited to offer them hands-on journalism experience in their community.”

The eleven students selected are Noah Smith, Monique Thomas, Dylan Thomas, Emma Rojas, Allison Nguyen, Cash Lira, Leila Holland, Dre Garmon, Luke Deeble, Charli Gonzalez, and Rasheed Riveroll Castillo.

We’re proud that interns from our previous two classes have come out of the program ready to work in a professional setting. We’ve hired Nina Fife as our assistant editor, and Nina and Kasey Holland were our social media directors last year. Additionally Eli Aquino and Leilany Castro remain as valued freelance writers, videographers, and photographers on our staff.

Other 562 internship program alums are currently in college journalism programs at USC, Maryland, Cal, Pepperdine, and other universities.

While all internship positions are currently filled for this school year, The562–in concert with the LBUSD’s internship program–is planning to provide additional opportunities on a yearly basis. 

We are still seeking two additional sponsors for this program. Any interested parties can contact Mike Guardabascio by email at

Mike Guardabascio
An LBC native, Mike Guardabascio has been covering Long Beach sports professionally for 13 years, with his work published in dozens of Southern California magazines and newspapers. He's won numerous awards for his writing as well as the CIF Southern Section’s Champion For Character Award, and is the author of three books about Long Beach history.