Finals 2023 Op-Ed: Why is High School Journalism Important?


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Journalism has been around in some way for centuries, but what is the value of journalism today? The NHS Chief Advocate staff pondered that question at the end of this school year.

Chief Advocate Staff

The students in Nonnewaug’s Investigative Multimedia Journalism class reflected upon one question at the end of the year.

Why is high school journalism important?

Here are some snippets of their opinions.

“To be able to write great stories, you need to make everything connect back to where it started, which is your very own community. Finding a topic that interests you, and the people around you, is how you connect with people. From the interviews you make, which could lead to potential opportunities down the road, to the events you choose to cover, which, whether you like it or not, involves you in the community, high school journalism creates different pathways for you to follow. The greats all have to come from somewhere, and with the skills you come to share with all of your fellow journalism peers, that place may very well be high school — all you have to do is play those cards right.”

— Maia Colavito ’26

“If you win your soccer tournament and see yourself in the town newspaper? Journalism. Watching the basketball halftime show? Journalism. So many people use journalism in their everyday lives without even noticing it. … What people should know is that without journalism, there would be no news. Everyone would have to figure out what’s happening in the world by themselves. Imagine that? … The problem with society is that our attention spans are shorter than the stories that are produced. People are quick to read the first sentence of a story someone worked hard on and click out of it. How are journalists supposed to make a story that takes 10 seconds to read? To answer this question, it’s impossible. Instead of scrolling past a story you might think is too boring, give it a chance. Journalists take chances every time they pitch a story in a meeting. For it to make its way onto your screen or paper, take some time to appreciate it.”

— Emma DeFrancesco ’25

“You learn a lot about how to communicate better and more confidently, how to lead conversations, and also how to write more efficiently and effectively. Anyone can do journalism, which is why it’s important.”

— Neal Waites ’23

“High school journalism has been around for decades, and there’s a reason it’s been sticking around. How else would students, teachers, and parents get their news? People like knowing what’s going on, especially in their own community. Not only [is there] the obvious reason of journalism — to inform communities — but more importantly, [journalism helps] to build skills in writing you wouldn’t typically learn in an English class.”

— Emma Jones ’25

“High school journalism has also taught students many life lessons, one being: ‘Nothing is ever guaranteed; you must work for it.’ In journalism classes, you have to earn your status. You can’t just become editor-in-chief after one month of class. Everything is earned.”

— Anna Crocker ’26