BHS Journalism experiences Chicago


Ty Harris, BHS Journalism

Last weekend, BHS Journalism students took a trip to attend a national JEA convention in Chicago.

The convention featured former Chief Photographer of the White House Pete Souza, who spoke about layout, writing, photography and more. Students gained a lot of new journalistic knowledge and skills from the convention.

“I learned a lot from the convention,” sophomore Zoe Thomas said. “It really helped to strengthen my writing.”

Not only did they learn a lot, but the students also had fun sightseeing around Chicago as they ate deep dish pizza at Pizzeria Uno, the restaurant that started the deep dish trend in 1943, and went to the Skydeck in Willis Tower, 103 stories high.

“My favorite part was the Skydeck,” junior Trinity Moody said, “because it was both terrifying and exciting.”

In addition, students enjoyed seeing a Chicago Bulls game and visiting Wrigley Field, home of the Chicago Cubs.

“My favorite part of the trip was probably going to the Bulls game,” sophomore Belle Olson said, “because I love sports and it was a really exciting and close game.”

But for others, the best part of the trip was the mere experience of seeing metropolitan Chicago.

“My favorite part was just going to a big city,” BHS Journalism teacher Kit Harris said. “Being from a small town, I think it’s fun to go to the city and tour around and check things out.”

Another unique part of the trip was the time spent going up to Chicago. Instead of traveling by airplane, the students took a train. The group loaded the Amtrak at 5 a.m. out of Lawrence and arrived at Chicago’s Union Station at 3 p.m.

“I liked traveling on the train,” Thomas said. “It was a long ride, but it was a different experience than driving in a car of flying.”

Although some students enjoyed the train trip, others did not.

“Riding a train made me nauseous,” junior Makenzie Blackman said. “It was very shaky and hard to fall to asleep in. It was also super cold.”

Overall, however, the students had a very fun and informative trip.

“It was fun taking a lot of very cool kids on the trip,” Harris said. “I had a blast with them. They were all fun kids to spend time with.”

“Trips like these make it easy to create great bonds with people maybe you didn’t talk to as much before the trip,” Moody said.

Harris and his students plan on taking more trips to JEA conventions in the future, as well.

“I hope to take students every year to the JEA convention,” Harris said. “Next spring, I hope to take a group to Nashville.”