High school students take over airwaves

CINNAMON PLAYER
Contributing Writer

The 44th annual Journalism Day at NSU hosted approximately 200 high school students. Freshmen through seniors involved in media programs came Nov. 3 to learn from panelists and compete in broadcast and print media competitions.

Overall winner Sarah Pardue of Elysian Fields will receive a $1,000 scholarship if she chooses to attend NSU as a communications major and work with student media.

One onsite competition the Department of New Media, Journalism, and Communication Arts organizes for the event is a live radio announcing competition, which included 15 broadcasters this year.

“There [are] going to be some participants that have had little to no exposure in radio,” said Jane Close, NSU alumna and radio host for 94.9 FM The River. “My goal as a judge [is] to listen for confidence and give feedback on areas of improvement.”

Students in attendance expected to learn from the experience. C.E Byrd freshman Gavin Horan wanted to learn how to project his voice and sound more professional.

Horan placed third in the competition. Kaitlyn Taylor from Natchitoches Central placed second, and Hanna Miller from the Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts placed first.

“Considering the age of the participants, I was pleasantly surprised with their performance,” Close said. “Overall, I think each participant has the potential to pursue a career in radio or other media professions.”

Students were given a list of facts and 20 minutes to compile a 30-second script to announce live on KNWD.

The competition allowed high school students the opportunity to gain insight, tips and experience with radio news writing and announcing.

“Choose an area that you like, that you love and if you do this you would never work a day in your life. It will always be fun going to work,” said Arthur Dew, professor of radio and television at NSU.

“One of the most important skills I believe a person should have when pursuing radio is the art of being personable and relatable,” Close said. “You want to engage with your listener on a one-on-one level. Capturing the attention, and holding it like a face-to-face conversation is what keeps the listener coming back for more.”

“There is a special skill where
you have to perform as a broadcaster,” said Noah Baudoin, KNWD general manager.
“For some students it may come easier and for students that it doesn’t come
easy to, I plead that they don’t get discouraged. There’s room for improvement.”

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