Newspaper has changed my life

Marina Gephart
By: Marina Gephart

After I graduate, you’ll all probably have memories of me interviewing an array of people, stealing your quotes for Heard in the Halls, and just shamelessly promoting newspaper in general. My life and everything I do revolves around writing and leading The Howler staff, and journalism is my passion. I’ve loved literacy since I can remember, but I was always partial to creative writing. Unfortunately, coming into sophomore year, I was notified that creative writing was no longer being offered. In that moment, I committed to the closest thing: being a member of the newspaper staff.

Joining newspaper was pretty intimidating, to say the least, but it has changed my life in every way. I have been offered so many opportunities either through or because of newspaper and the networking that has taken place is unbelievable. Had I not forecasted for newspaper as a sophomore, I would not have become a member of FBLA or been able to compete at the state level in Seattle. I would never have met or reported on U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell and her visit to Heritage High School. And had I not forecasted for newspaper, I would not have delved into the journalistic world, and would not have been able to be an editor for three years. I even was able to interview some of my favorite bands and was given press-treatment at their shows. Without journalism, I don’t know which version of myself would be walking on the stage this June for graduation; newspaper has made me.

In the fall, I am going to be attending Washington State University as a pre-Journalism major. Without newspaper, and various other CTE classes I’ve taken throughout my high school career, I probably would be beginning college as an undeclared major, not having the slightest clue what I’m about to begin studying. CTE classes, especially newspaper, transform average students and turn them into leaders. Personally, it has provided me with an opportunity to prove myself, and discover what kind of person I am. Every scholarship and college application I’ve filled out has not been without an exuberant recount of all the time I’ve spent in room 600, sometimes into late hours of the night, and all the memories I’ve made because of it.

The community needs to consider placing arts and CTE classes on a pedestal; the fact is that these classes transform average teenagers in high school to outstanding high school professionals. Newspaper has changed—no, made—my life.