MSU Denver Event Encourages Young Writers


Posted Thu, Jul 18, 2019

Former Denver Post reporter Mike Peterson talked about Word Choice, Curiosity and Ethics. [Photo: Autumn Schwinn]

DENVER – MSU Denver hosts Youth Journalism Day every summer to encourage elementary and middle school students toward better storytelling.

An average of 50 Generation Z students from all over Colorado came to MSU Denver for insightful teaching on how to become great storytellers. Some heard about the event from family, online, and still others read it in the newspapers. “We read about it in the paper,” budding journalist Gina Ridgeway said, “I’m so excited!”

These future reporters were first introduced to the world of journalism by collecting information from interviews. Then the program moved into teaching how to be descriptive in their writing, and how to tell stories with pictures. After the lectures, the students had time to write a story and the best articles would be published in Denver Post’s Colorado Kids section.

MSU Denver’s Youth Journalism Day affords elementary and middle school students an opportunity to become published before high school. [Photo: Autumn Schwinn]

“We wanted to give kids, before high school, a chance to write and be published,” said Youth Day Director Dana Plewka. This cultivates good writing and can be the start of portfolios.

With MSU Denver doing this event for over 15 years, not only children are attending. The director of Write on Sports, Jim Epstein, gave his support and is working out a partnership with university. “Our camps are longer than this. We have kids come for two weeks and help develop their writing by having them cover sports news. We were founded only last year, but Metro is helping us to gain traction.”

“We have to make sure what we do has meaning,” said Metro State journalism Professor Shaun Schafer, a speaker at this event. With Colorado youths being taught by professionals and programs being created to encourage growth, MSU speakers feel they are impacting the next generation.


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