How has journalism impacted your high school experience?
Noelle Smagala (Website and Social Media Editor): Newspaper has taught me self-assurance and confidence. I tend to look to others for validation or “the answers”, but with writing, you have the freedom and responsibility to do those things. I have always been wavering in terms and opinions, but I found a voice by talking to a variety of people in the community and gathering their views to form my own. Best decision I made in high school!
Harrison Linden (Graphics Designer): It helped me push my artistic endeavors further into the public. Journalism was an outlet to push forward whatever crazy and bizarre ideas I could come up with. From an artistic standpoint, journalism helped me grow as an artist because I have had the pleasure of making art for the benefit of others as opposed to my own. Overall, it helped me be more well-rounded in terms of my understanding of life.
Brandt Ward (Perspectives Editor): Newspaper has impacted my life significantly. I have made many new friends throughout my experience working for the press. It has cultivated my writing abilities and has overall made me a better writer, and it allowed me to gain a lot of other skills, such as interviewing. I always looked forward to the eighth period as it was the highlight of my day.
What will you take away from your journalism and high school experience?
Jordan Dullnigg (Photographer): My takeaway is to try new things and not be afraid to do so. Do not be afraid to get out of your comfort zone and hang with a new group of friends, join a club, or an activity.
Ayden Reed (Headlines Reporter): High school takes a lot of work and dedication, but at the end of the day, it is supposed to be fun. It is supposed to develop you into the person you want to be when you grow up. You should work hard but enjoy the experience because once it is over, you are going to wish you were that freshman whose biggest fear was getting pennies thrown at them.
Myra Bajwa (Metea Media Editor-In-Chief): Newspaper has been a major part of my life over the past three years and has given me the skills to interview professionally, write in a succinct matter, and become a leader in the newsroom. Student journalism is important because students bring a unique voice to the community and are better equipped to talk about certain issues.
What will you miss most about high school and journalism?
Madison McCalley (Photographer): I will miss being a Mustang and a part of the Stampede staff because it allowed me to meet many people. They are the ones that got me through these past four years. High school was an incredible journey!
Elena Buscher (Sports Reporter): I will miss the people. These are people that I have spent the last 13 years of my life with, and it is going to be so strange to possibly never see them again. This is the same with newspaper, and I will miss all of the friends I have made. In this class, I have learned so many lessons, but it is the relationships and memories that I believe will leave the greatest impact on me.
What are you looking forward to in college?
Claire Baffes (Spotlight Reporter): It is a brand new experience, and I am looking forward to seeing what it has to offer.
Sharika Majeti (Perspectives Reporter): I am looking forward to pretty much everything. I am excited to have independence and find my true passions and sense of self. Also, I look forward to making new relationships and taking college classes about topics I love learning about.
Marco Rivero (Spotlight Editor): I’m looking forward to learning a lot more about my major and developing my skills for the future. I’m looking to go to law school after majoring in poli-sci so I can’t wait to learn the skills to help me in that profession too.
What advice do you have for the younger grades?
Noelle Pryor (Photography Editor): Do not let grades stress you out. There are different routes you can go in life, and life does not have to revolve around school.
Alex Bedore (Sports Reporter): In journalism class, try to connect with your classmates and section. It truly helps and makes for a better classroom environment. To high school students in general, try new things and join clubs. Even if you think that you are taking a risk or will not enjoy an activity, you can find enjoyment in the people around you.
Jose Collado (Sports Reporter): You should enjoy the experience and everything that comes with it. Stay committed and on top of your work, but do not be afraid to be yourself.