We accomplished a lot during the Fall and Winter news teams during the 2021-22 school year. At Fall News Team, we had amazing volunteers who came to the University of St. Thomas and taught our high school students how to write an op-ed. Ruben Rosario, a former city editor and metro columnist for the Pioneer Press, walked students through his process of writing an op-ed. We were also joined by Myron Medcalf, the Star Tribune columnist, who shared an op-ed he wrote describing how he felt after hearing about what happened to George Floyd in Minneapolis. In this issue, you will find students’ op-ed stories, written about topics important to them and inspired by the #360YouthVoiceChallenge.
At Winter News Team, we teamed up with the university’s Marketing, Insights and Communication team and asked students to write about professors or college students focusing on life-changing experiences relating to equity and inclusion initiatives at St. Thomas.
I am so proud of our students who were willing to come over to St. Thomas every Saturday, especially during the Minnesota winter, to learn how to become a better writer.
I want to thank all the guest speakers who volunteered. John Lauritsen, from WCCO-TV, talked to the students about how to be an awesome interviewer. Frederick Melo, from the Pioneer Press, led a session on how to write a profile story. Star Tribune photo editor Christine T. Nguyen demonstrated how to take profile photos. Sharon Yoo, from KARE-11, talked about her reporting job, and what it’s like to be a reporter before and during the COVID-19 pandemic.
On the last day of Winter News Team, we had a sports reporting Learning Lab with WCCO’s Mike Max. The students were put into teams and pitched a cover story relating to the Winter Olympics. Max pretended to be a news director, giving feedback to the teams. Students pretended to work in a newsroom to experience what a manager expects.
I am now looking forward to our summer program in June and July, our busiest months. We have College Essay Boot Camp, News Reporter Academy, Radio Camp, TV Camp and Emerging Media camps. If you know anybody in high school who wants to learn about journalism, please encourage them to apply.