Insider's Guide to High School Perspective Top

For a great start in high school, join the school newspaper

Hannah Rah/YJI

Rockville, Maryland, U.S.A. – Entering high school can be nerve-wracking. I remember my concerns for the first day ranged from finding all my classes on time to locating the right place to sit during lunch. 

What I ultimately found helped me settle into my high school life the most was joining the school newspaper.

I would recommend it to any rising freshmen with the first day jitters. 

One of the biggest challenges of entering high school is orienting to the new environment. With so many unfamiliar faces, it can be daunting to attempt to connect with this new community.

That’s one reason student journalism is perfect for entering high school: it’s such an easy way to stay engaged with the community.

Whether it’s sporting events or student performances, you’ll be among the first to know what’s going on at your school. Reporting will give you a reason to attend these events regularly and show off your school spirit. 

For those afraid of making new friends in high school, joining the newspaper is a great solution.

Publications tend to have a wide variety of sections, ranging from opinion to sports, so it’s an extracurricular that usually attracts a diverse group of students.

You’ll be working alongside peers you otherwise might not have known and aiming for the common goal of publishing a good newspaper. The teamwork and cooperation that goes into this process will likely put you on the fast track to making friends. 

Joining the newspaper is a commitment that will pay off in the long run because it’ll look great on college applications. Not only does it show you were consistently engaged with your school community, but it also reflects unique writing experience.

There’s also the potential to pursue editor positions, which showcases leadership and initiative, as well as the possibility of joining Quill and Scroll, the journalism honors society. 

Writing for your school newspaper is a great way to unwind from a challenging day of classes. At my school, students enroll in a class to write for the newspaper and the publication is produced during class periods. This meant once I was finished writing my article for that publication cycle, it was essentially a free period and I could utilize the time to catch up on homework or study for tests.

Even if the newspaper is a club at your school, it’s still a great way to relax after a long day of learning and touch base with your fellow writers. 

Choosing to get involved with the school newspaper has been the highlight of my high school career. It’s a great way to get involved and start high school off on the right foot.

Hannah Rah is a Junior Reporter with Youth Journalism International.

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