VHSL and Jostens take Journalism Education on the Road

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Students learn from nationally recognized journalism educators

The Virginia High School League (VHSL) and Jostens collaborated to offer statewide workshops to high school journalism students that produce their school Yearbooks, Newspapers, and Literary Magazines. Approximately 1,000 students participated in the full day workshops in Fredericksburg, Richmond and Roanoke presented by nationally recognized educators teaching a variety of courses in newspaper, yearbook and magazine publishing.

Nationally recognized school journalism experts that presented to conference attendees included Nancy Hastings, Indiana JEA; Jeff Nardone, Gross Pointe South HS, Michigan; Casey Nichols, Rocklin HS, California; Jake Pakenske, NCompass Media, Texas; Bruce Watterson, Columbia Scholastic Press Association; Shannon Williams, Jostens and Mary Kay Downes, Chantilly HS, Virginia . The workshops presented best practices for school journalism including current and emerging trends in copy writing, photography, layout and design as well as fundamentals that never go out of style. Attendees of the conference also had the opportunity to explore the convergence of print media and online publication.

"VHSL's fall workshops stimulate publication staffs to look beyond the obvious, to share ideas, to see value in one another's work. Virginia's students’ ability to call on their intellectual curiosity and make those essential connections with workshop and conference teachers pushes them to the top in scholastic rankings...and enables their publications to really serve their readers,” said Bruce Watterson, Current Chairman of the National Awards Committee at Columbia Scholastic Press Association.

This is the seventh year that the Virginia High School League and Jostens have worked together to conduct the statewide workshops. Student journalists were also able to celebrate their respective publication's rating and ranking, as results from the annual VHSL publications evaluations and individual Writing, Photo and Design Contest were announced.

The VHSL Publications Evaluation Services results are posted online at http://www.vhsl.org/files/pubseval-results-2010-11.pdf. Eighteen literary/art magazines reached the pinnacle of success and garnered a Trophy Class ranking; 16 newspapers and 36 yearbooks did the same. Staffs receiving the Charles E. Savedge Award for Sustained Excellence (five Trophy Class rankings within a seven-year period) are: Chantilly (Andromeda literary magazine), Lee-Davis (The Confederate yearbook), George Washington (Euantes literary magazine), Stonewall Jackson (Heritage yearbook), Prince George (The Royal News newspaper) and Hidden Valley (Theogony yearbook). Results are also available at http://www.vhsl.org.

Jostens (http://www.jostens.com) is “The Official Commemorative Brand” of the Virginia High School League sponsoring these Regional Publications Workshops, Student Leadership Conferences, and Championship Ring Recognition in the state of Virginia.

About VHSL
The Virginia High School League (VHSL) is an alliance of Virginia's 312 public high schools providing quality student activities. VHSL programs are an extension of the classroom and provide students with an opportunity to develop teamwork and leadership skills, to learn the importance of sportsmanship ethics and integrity, and to become better citizens. More than 200,000 students participate in VHSL programs.

About Jostens
Minneapolis-based Jostens is a provider of products, programs and services that help people tell their stories, celebrate important traditions and recognize achievements. The company’s products include school yearbooks and other memory book products, scholastic products such as class rings and graduation products, and products for athletic champions and their fans. Jostens is a subsidiary of Visant Corporation, a marketing and publishing services enterprise servicing the school affinity, direct marketing, fragrance and cosmetics sampling and educational and trade publishing segments.

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Drew Krejci
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