PEN Journalists Compete In Texas

by Nina Li
PEN Journalists Compete In Texas

Peninsula logo.100 Peninsula High students participate in national journalism convention.

Nine Peninsula High School students from the Pen newspaper traveled to Dallas, Texas on Nov. 16 to attend the National Scholastic Press Association and Journalism Education Association sponsored event at which more than 4,000 journalists from all over the country gather to learn more about newspaper design, writing more interesting stories and conducting smoother interviews.
The convention featured hundreds of speakers who prepared professional learning sessions offering tips on how to meet deadlines, how to phrase attention-grabbing headlines and how to attract more readers.
The convention also featured writing competitions, best of show contests, critiques and awards convocations.
panthers.journal“It was overall a really great experience,” said Editor-in-chief Zoe Willoughby. “ I enjoyed learning at all the classes and being able to meet other students from other newspapers.”
 On the first day of the convention, each Pen journalist was required to attend at least three classes. Some of the classes included “Up Your Interview Game”, “Deadlines Decoded,” “Color Choices: Smarter, Not Harder” and “Covering Conflict.”
The event had hundreds of other classes to choose from, applying not only to writers and editors of newspaper, but also for yearbook and literary magazine students as well as advisors.
panthers.journal“The convention was a really great experience, and I loved how we were able to learn about interesting topics at classes but also have downtime to bond with one another,” said Focus editor Liana Korotzer. “It was a much-needed break from the stress of school, and we were able to hear from so many talented journalists.”
This year, Pen’s advisor, Jaymee Johnson and her father, Kelly Johnson, accompanied the students to Dallas. The group including Liana Korotzer, Christopher Guanzing, JungIn Kim, Anne Lee, Emily McGinn, Zoe Willoughby, Stella Yoo and Ana Willoughby stayed four days. During the times where classes were not in session, the students visited downtown Dallas and ate together at restaurants.
“Convention allowed us to expand our knowledge in terms of journalism and allowed us to attend various classes to learn skills that we can use to continually improve our newspaper,” said Student Life editor Emily McGinn.
“We were exposed to different newspapers across the country with different styles and ideas that can help us broaden our own ideas for our newspaper, which will definitely help us in the future,” she said.
One of the highlights of the trip was swapping newspapers with others from across the country and beyond. From schools in Missouri to London, everyone was able to get new ideas from another school’s newspaper and see how to improve our own.
“This is my second convention, and it never ceases to amaze me,” Focus editor Lee said.
“Everything about the convention exceeded my expectations. The classes, the people and the energy all helped me leave with a stronger motivation to become a better journalist and use my words to make a change in the world; even if that means starting with the students who read our schools newspaper.”

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