As Christopher Callahan (pictured at right), Dean of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications, addressed members of the ASNE Reynolds Institute about preparing high school students for journalism at the next level, he emphasized how important it is that students are being inspired and excited by the idea of journalism.
"Infuse that passion in them at a very early age," he said. "Be a great mentor to your students."
I was surprised by this statement, but in a good way. Instead of telling us to teach them how to be better writers, photographers, reporters and designers, the charge was to show them our excitement and passion for the journalism world.
What a great lesson to take away from his conversation with us. You can teach students to write a lead or compose a better picture, but you can't give them the passion for the world of journalism.
This made me think about my classroom environment and what I do to instill the passion for journalism in my students, and I realized, by being selected as a member of this institute and learning so much more, I am reigniting the passion I have for journalism and that can only trickle down to the students who are in my classroom this fall.
Emporia High School