J-Kid Takeover: Journalism 2016

Mary Centimano

505.6 miles. The fastest route to Dallas, Texas. 

103 Harbinger and Hauberk students’ rub their eyes after waking up from their four and a half hour nap sitting uncomfortably in the seats of the massive charter bus. Images of them laying out by the brand new pool at the all too familiar hotel, The Marriott Quorum, and posing for pictures with the famous burgers from In-N-Out linger in their minds. 

But this wasn’t a vacation, they were there for the annual Gloria Shields Workshop to prepare for the year ahead. They were there to learn, improve their skills and get inspiration for their publications. 

Although the Dallas workshop and other national conventions, located in places such as Indianapolis, Indiana and Seattle, Washington, seemed as if they were trips filled with shopping, NBA games and touring different newspapers, they were more importantly about learning the basics for the upcoming year on staff. 

“Dallas is that one thing that if you are on yearbook or Harbinger you want to experience,” sophomore Paige Prothe said. “You want to experience the hype and hard work for yourself.”

In Dallas, writers stepped onto the elevator at 8 a.m. every morning, laptops in hand, ready to walk into class and place their chairs in a circle for their class nicknamed, “Love Cov.” They worked until lunch, practicing different writing techniques and sharing personal writing pieces with the rest of the group to take advantage of the time they had before being thrown into the year with no experience.

While at the national conventions, students took classes to expand their knowledge outside of room 521. First year photographers learned to use their camera equipment, writers discovered what it meant to create a “moment” and designers got their hands on Adobe programs for the first time. Staffers also had the opportunity to see and compete with other schools’ publications to win awards for the Harbinger and Hauberk and came up with creative ideas for their new designs, pictures and stories by looking through other schools’ yearbooks and newspapers. 

“When you go on those trips you get to meet a ton of people from a lot of different newspapers,” sophomore Annabel Cook said. “You get to look at what other newspapers are doing and get ideas which is a cool experience.”

Gaining ideas and insight from other schools’ publications added to the list of things journalism students took back to East’s journalism program. Whether it be designing a unique headline on Indesign, or taking back a story idea for Harbinger’s next issue, the trips provided valuable experiences meant to improve both the Hauberk and Harbinger at East.