Ogden column: The search continues for high school journalists

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The first “season” of 2012 is over.

Football and volleyball champions have been crowned, golfers took their final swings and runners and swimmers completed their final races.

This past week also marked the end of my fall season in search of high school journalists.

But like the many athletes who have moved on to another sport, my work is not done.

I want to make more trips, visit more schools, encourage more students to help us cover their schools, their teams and their classmates or teammates.

If you’ve missed this pitch in the past, we are opening our doors at The Gazette and KCRG to work with high school journalists — writers and photographers and even those interested in being television reporters. We offer a platform to showcase their talent, either at www.IowaPrepSports.com, in the newspaper and with our webcast, the Sports Desk.

I have visited 31 schools this fall, six more than last year when we started this program in November. We have received more than 90 stories and 130 photos (including 56 from North Cedar senior Emily Blake) from 66 students from 24 different schools in Eastern Iowa. Three students have participated in a Sports Desk taping.

Several of these stories also have found there way into these pages, including a front-page story by Decorah senior Shana Kelly and a “why I play football” essay by Marion senior Jordan Hansen.

Hansen, by the way, is the winner of our fall prize. His name was drawn from all those contributors and he received his Kindle Fire last week.

We will have drawings in March and May for two more Kindle Fire tablets, then a final drawing to distribute two $500 college scholarships.

All you have to do to get your name in the drawing is contribute a story, photo or video. The more you contribute, the more times your name gets in the drawing and the better your chances are at winning.

It’s that simple.

It all starts with a visit to your school, although you can start contributing at any time. My goal is to hit all 80-plus high schools in The Gazette’s circulation area as wells as the 20-some more that KCRG’s signal reaches.

Last week, it was Decorah and Postville, next week it’s Dubuque Senior and ... who knows. I’m setting up my December and 2013 schedule and would enjoy visiting your school.

Contact me at l Comments: (319) 368-8696; jr.ogden@thegazette.com

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