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Speakers announced, registration open for Edinboro University’s High School Journalism Day

03/10/2014

Edinboro University’s will host its Eighth Annual High School Journalism Day and Competition on April 4 with keynote speakers Bob Benz, partner in LedgeSolutions and former vice president/interactive for the E.W. Scripps Company’s newspapers, and Dan Walk, assistant editor at the Meadville Tribune.

EU’s High School Journalism Day and Competition is a daylong event that is open to high school juniors and seniors, as well as to high school teachers and media advisors who are interested in journalism.

“We are delighted to have these two successful Edinboro University graduates leading our lineup for this year’s Journalism Day and Competition,” said  Tony Peyronel, Ed.D., chair of the Department of Communication and Media Studies.

Benz began his career as a journalist, spending 10 years in newsrooms. The highlight of his journalism career came in 1994, when he was an editor on “The Plutonium Experiment,” which won a Pulitzer Prize for reporter Eileen Weisome and The Albuquerque Tribune. He is a graduate of Edinboro University and holds a master’s degree from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Walk is assistant editor at The Meadville Tribune. He joined the newspaper in 2011 as a sports reporter and moved to the news desk in 2013 when he was promoted to assistant editor. He previously served as sports editor of the Punxsutawney Spirit, where he won a 2010 Pennsylvania Associated Press award. As a student, Walk worked as a reporter and sports editor at The Spectator, Edinboro’s weekly campus newspaper, and served as a sports intern at The Meadville Tribune before graduating from Edinboro in 2006.

Benz will open the event with a talk at 9:30 a.m., and Walk will speak as part of the awards luncheon at noon. Journalism Day events will run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Frank G. Pogue Student Center on the Edinboro campus. A $1,000 scholarship to Edinboro University will be presented at the awards luncheon, as will cash prizes provided by Gazette Newspapers and JET-TV, Fox 66 and YourErie.com.

Awards will be handed out in four print journalism categories,  two photo journalism categories, two broadcast journalism categories and one web publication category.

Workshops for students and faculty will be offered on a variety of topics. Panelists include Lou Baxter, news director for JET-TV, Fox 66 and YourErie.com; Jeffrey Hileman, director of university communications at Edinboro University and former online editor at the Erie Times-News; Emily Matson, anchor, reporter and producer with WICU-TV; and Kim Thomas Plyler, director of communications and public relations for PA State Senator Sean D. Wiley.

Students and teachers interested in participating in Edinboro University’s Eighth Annual High School Journalism Day and Competition can obtain registration information by visiting www.edinboro.edu and typing “High School Journalism Day” in the keyword search box.

Seats for the event are limited and the Department of Communication and Media Studies asks that registration forms be completed and returned by March 28. For further information, contact James Wertz, Ph.D., NWPA High School Journalism Competition Chairperson, by email at rwertz@edinboro.edu or telephone at (814) 732-1254.