In case you haven’t heard, seven high school students have been learning about journalism as part of mentorship programs at their schools.
Their articles can be found in the Young Edge section of gainesvilletimes.com.
They write material geared toward their fellow high school students, but the subject matter they tackle and the skill with which they do it is not “just for teens.”
Most of the interns have also had stories published in “Get Out,” The Times’ Thursday entertainment guide, and some have been published in the Our Region and Life sections of the paper.
Through the Honors Mentorship Program and Work-Based Learning, they’re getting a firsthand look at what it takes to be a journalist.
The Young Edge section rolled out in September. Two months later, here’s a quick look at what they’ve learned thus far:
A senior at Chestatee, Braun expected to write articles as part of her Work-Based Learning internship. She didn’t know she’d get to shadow Times photographer Scott Rogers and get to go to plays and interview people involved in them.
For a writer who likes elaborate words, Braun has learned to embrace the “short and sweet” approach of journalism that still gets all the details and puts everything in language understood by readers.
Her favorite article she’s written is one that will publish Saturday about Operation Christmas Child, an effort to gather items in a shoebox to send to children in need around the world.
A senior at North Hall, Canada is the editor of her school newspaper and is at The Times through the Honors Mentorship Program. She has enjoyed learning to work with a team of fellow interns who have different viewpoints and interests.
Her favorite article she’s written so far was one that delved into the issue of domestic violence and how seriously teens take it.
A senior at West Hall, Mahroum appreciates being in the know because of his work as an intern at The Times through the Honors Mentorship Program.
His favorite two stories so far were about a Republican presidential debate and “Star Wars” fans. Another valuable piece of journalism he produced was a breakdown of the difference in Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and dual enrollment methods of earning college credit in high school.
A junior at Flowery Branch in the Honors Mentorship, McDonald is the peer-chosen leader of the interns. The newsroom hasn’t been as loud as she expected, but she added that “it’s the most organized chaos I’ve ever seen.”
She has enjoyed learning how to write in a style that’s different from her schoolwork and also has embraced objective reporting.
Her favorite stories so far were on how music changes people and how marching band is sometimes the forgotten part of football Friday nights.
A senior at Johnson, Olsen came into his Work-Based Learning internship expecting to focus on taking photos and video. He’s worked on quite a few writing assignments, though, as well.
Olsen said it’s helped him learn how to interview sources and how to write and format his stories. Plus, he’s learned that curiosity can lead to good stories.
His highlight so far has been getting into Hispanic neighborhoods with Times reporter Joshua Silavent and talking with residents about their concerns.
A senior at Flowery Branch and Honors Mentorship student, Thomas didn’t realize the interns would have their own portion of the website and the freedom to write about topics that interested them.
“It’s really open, and I like that about it,” Thomas said.
She said she has enjoyed getting out of her comfort zone with her writing. A prime example of that has been cutting down on personal pronouns (I, me, you) and telling stories through the perspective of those she interviews.
Her favorite article so far gave tips for teens to have better self-esteem.
A senior at East Hall who is dual enrolled at the University of North Georgia, Tyner has seen a major difference in writing essays and writing news stories.
An Honors Mentorship student, Tyner said she has realized the importance of being organized and having a planner. She also said The Times internship has helped increase her people skills.
Tyner’s favorite story she’s written so far was about Roxie Holt, a patient at Northeast Georgia Medical Center who got to reunite with her dog in the hospital’s new pet park. It was a centerpiece on the Our Region page of The Times.
To read articles from these teens, visit www.gainesvilletimes.com/youngedge.