Plotting Your Journalism Route

Unleash your potential in the world of journalism.
A J2 student caught interviewing a peer for her broadcast piece.
A J2 student caught interviewing a peer for her broadcast piece.
Photography, Nevaeh Thetford

As you navigate your high school journey, Journalism classes can offer a dynamic and enriching experience, providing you with valuable skills applicable to various fields. Ms. Goetting teaches Journalism 1(J1) and Journalism 2(J2) as well as her English classes. 

As a sophomore, J1 is the gateway into the realm of Journalism. This course primarily focuses on foundational concepts, including journalistic ethics, and news writing techniques. Students delve into the inner workings of the yearbook, learning the intricacies of layout design, photojournalism, and feature writing. They will contribute to the school’s online newspaper, gaining firsthand experience in article writing, editing, and digital media production.

Ella Holthaus(11) a J2 member sits concentrating so her article is to the best of her ability. (Photography, Nevaeh Thetford)

Reserved for juniors and seniors, J2 offers an advanced exploration of journalistic practices. This course focuses on producing the school’s weekly broadcast and dives deeper into the dynamics of online journalism. Students sharpen their reporting skills and learn the essentials of video production. Additionally, they play a crucial role in shaping the content and direction of the school’s online newspaper, tackling pressing issues, and fostering community enforcement. 

Choosing J1 or J2 ultimately depends on your interests, aspirations, and readiness for advanced coursework. If you’re a sophomore eager to dip your toes into journalism, J1 provides an excellent starting point to build a strong foundation. On the other hand, juniors and seniors seeking to further hone their skills and take on more substantial journalistic challenges will find J2 to be a rewarding opportunity for growth and innovation. 

Both J1 and J2 classes offer students the chance to participate in prestigious journalism competitions, showcasing their skills and talents on a broader stage. SISPA(Southern Illinois School Press Association) is a competition that provides students from both classes with an opportunity to compete in writing, photography, and design events. It serves as a platform for students to demonstrate their creativity, journalistic expertise, and technical skills.

Students selected by Ms. Goetting have the chance to compete in IHSA(Ilinois High School Association) competitions, where they compete for spots in sectionals and potentially qualify for state-level competitions. IHSA competitions encompass a wide range of categories, including writing, photography, design, and video production. It’s a chance for students to test their courage against peers from across the state and showcase their talents on a larger scale.

Three members of J2 talk to figure out their game plan for the week. (Photography, Nevaeh Thetford)

Whether you’re captivated by the art of storytelling, passionate about uncovering the truth, or simply curious to explore new horizons, journalism classes offer a dynamic platform to express yourself. So as you embark on your academic journey, consider the enriching possibilities that wait in the vibrant world of journalism.

Herrin High School has numerous opportunities for students interested in the journalism field and this continues to grow as the school grows. High school is the perfect opportunity to learn and expand, and these classes are a great way to start your future. Make sure to sign up for any of the classes you’re interested in by 5 PM on Friday the 22nd.

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