Tuesday, October 19, 2010
We're constantly being asked about the future of journalism -- newspapers in particular. One of the best ways to help define that answer is to work with the next generation of journalists.
The Bradenton Herald has renewed that effort this school year, working with students at every high school in Manatee County. The project, Journalism Next, is being led by Presentation Editor Jennifer Conklin. Leading the way among our high schools is Manatee High, which has published the student newspaper The Macohi for almost a century.
The Macohi and the students are lucky to have Erica Weiffenbach as their Macohi adviser. She met with me last year to brainstorm on applying for the Student/Newspaper Partnership Grant from the Newspaper Association of America Foundation -- a prestigious nod to only four high schools each year across the nation.
Well, she won the grant. With that brings $5,000 in funding and a yearlong commitment to working with the Herald as the area's local daily newspaper, as Jennifer wrote in her story here Sunday. Newsroom staffers meet at least once a month with Macohi students, helping them edit stories and produce the student newspaper.
On Monday, we launched the Journalism Next series in print -- weekly stories written by local high school students about something relevant in their world. Our first entry was reported and written by Manatee High student Jaina Patel, who showcased a new program by the University of South Florida that encourages high school freshmen to build a path to college.
We'll be building a section on Bradenton.com soon. Please send your ideas -- and students, if you want to get involved, let us know!