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Mason alumnus Mike Foss interviewing Kobe Bryant

In his work at USA Today, Mason alumnus Mike Foss, BA Communication ’11, meets many high­profile athletes. Here he is interviewing Team USA guard Kobe Bryant during the team’s final pre­competition practice at University of East London for the 2012 Olympics. Photo courtesy of Michael Madrid–USA TODAY.

Alumnus Recognized on "Forbes 30 Under 30" List

Mason alumnus Mike Foss interned at USA Today as a student.

He covered college sports when the paper’s soccer beat writer took a break to write a book. It turned out to be Foss’s big break, as the Soccer World Cup was starting in 2010 in South Africa. And he made the most of it.

“My internship transferred from covering college softball to covering World Cup soccer,” he says. “I was doing two or three stories a day.”

A few months after graduation, he landed a job as a digital editor at USA Today and eventually worked with Jamie Mottram, with whom he co­founded For the Win, USA Today’s sports news website, in 2013. 

The internship was crucial—and it never would have happened without the push of Mason journalism professor Steven Klein, now instructor emeritus.

“I took every class he taught,” Foss says. “At that point, I had no internships and no plan for one.”

In fact, Foss was a soccer player at Mason with aspirations of going pro—he played with the Real Salt Lake U23 team and worked out with the full team in 2009. But Klein was adamant: “Do the internship, because you need a backup plan,” Foss remembers him insisting.

Four years after his internship—and the launch of the website he helped found—Foss was named by Forbes magazine as one of 2015’s “30 Under 30” media stars to watch.