What They Did
The Guardian US and the student journalism staff of The Eagle Eye at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School (Parkland, Florida, USA) received the inaugural Global Youth & News Media prize for working jointly to keep young voices front and center in the live coverage of the March for Our Lives demonstration for The Guardian by the student journalists of The Eagle Eye.
Image above: Accepting the award (from left ) Melissa Falkowski, adviser, and Dara Rosen, journalist, for The Eagle Eye and Jane Spencer , deputy editor, for The Guardian US. [Photo by Josh Laporte, EJC.]
The massive demonstration on 24 March 2018 came a little over a month after a former student armed with an semi-automatic rifle killed 14 students and three staff members at the Parkland secondary school in February. The student journalists covering the march included survivors of that shooting.
Oliver Laughland, a Guardian U.S. journalist closely tied to the project, noted the reaction from the public: “We’ve been overwhelmed with how well the project was received,” he said in his story about the partnership. “Our readers have told us how inspired they felt by the voices and journalism that came out of it.”
The 11 student journalists provided live coverage , interviews with the speakers and performers as well as "some superb photography," Laughland noted. Costs for both the student and adult journalists were supported by Guardian readers who had donated more than $200 000 toward the Guardian's "Break the Cycle" series that aimed to "challenge the orthodoxy in America that action on gun violence is hopeless," Laughland explained.
In addition, staff members Emma Dowd and Dara Rosen interviewed Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.
"The work we did with The Guardian [US] ... showed that although we are students and we are young we could place articles with a major newspaper and win awards for it," Rosen said. "It feels very empowering, and I’m very grateful to them.’
Eagle Eye adviser Melissa Falkowski said the joint effort gave the staff an unprecedented chance to reach a global audience. “The Eagle Eye's mission has always been to elevate student voices on issues that are important to them,” she said. “Working with The Guardian allowed the students' voices to be elevated further to an audience of millions. Our students have used their platform to advocate for reforms to end gun violence in America and will continue to do so.”
Jane Spencer, deputy editor of The Guardian US, said the experience will have a lasting impact on the newsroom. “These young journalists blew us away with their talent, their passion, and their ability to fight cynicism with hope,” she said. “The project has inspired us to pursue new collaborations with young people, who look at the world's challenges with fresh eyes.”
Image below: Some of the live coverage by The Eagle Eye team.
Staff covering the event were: Madyson Kravitz, Dara Rosen, Taylor Yon, Leni Steinhardt, Emma Dowd, Brianna Fisher, Zoe Gordon, Kyra Parrow, Carly Novell, Rebecca Schneid, Kevin Trejos, Suzanna Barna, Nikhita Nookala, Richard Doan, and Christy Ma. (See photo at the bottom of this page)
THEY SAID IT ...
Commentary about the prize and the laureates.
"Receiving the award is 100% for our entire newspaper staff and everyone who has helped and empowered us. The work we did with The Guardian, I feel was very important to all of us. It showed that although we are students and we are young we could place articles with a major newspaper and win awards for it. It feels very empowering, and I’m very grateful to them.’’
- Dara Rosen, journalist
The Eagle Eye
(Quoted in The National, 4 November 2018)
"Driven by a new generation of young journalists, the reporting of the March for Our Lives has set a pioneering example of how new voices can be elevated into the media by established news organisations. The European Journalism Centre believes in the power of collaborative and independent reporting. The Eagle Eye and The Guardian US are deserved winners of the first Global Youth & News Media Prize."
-- Adam Thomas, director
European Journalism Centre
"The EBU is proud to support this inaugural Global Youth & News Media Prize and we congratulate the Eagle Eye and The Guardian on their award. There has never been a more important time to be a journalist and the best journalism is empowering. It is important that young people see their lives reflected in journalism and all the more important for young people to be joining this noble profession. The reporting of the March for Our Lives was brave, honest and impactful. We have great respect for the extremely talented young journalists at the Eagle Eye and The Guardian US in helping them develop their skills.”
-- Jean Philip De Tender, director of media,
European Broadcasting Union (EBU)
WHERE TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT...
Why Parkland students took over the Guardian US. By Guardian US editors (The Guardian, 23 March 2018)
How Parkland students took over the Guardian US. By Oliver Laughland, senior reporter for The Guardian based in New York. (The Guardian, 31 March 2018)
Student journalists share insights. Eagle Eye staff members spoke at The Newseum just before the March for Our Lives demonstration. (By Catherine Douglas Moran, Washington Life Magazine, 23 March 2018)
EAGLE EYE STUDENT JOURNALISM & COMMENTARY
Yesterday, we made history. And we're not going anywhere. By Rebecca Schneid, co-editor of The Eagle Eye. (The Guardian US, 25 March 2018).
THE JOURNALISTIC DISCUSSION
Video staff interview: The Palo Voice student journalists and staff from other media at the Palo Alto (California, USA) secondary school interview the staff of The Eagle Eye about their journalistic approach. (20 April 2018)
Discussion at the Newseum: Staff members Rebecca Scheid, Emma Dowd, Christy Ma, Nikhita Nookala, Kevin Trejos talk with senior CBS journalist Margaret Brennan on the eve of the demonstration. Discussion intro 8 minutes into the video. (23 March 2018)
From Parkland to #MeToo, 2018 is the year journalism met activism. (By John Bonazzo, Observer [NYC], 30 March 2018)
Laureates react to controversial speaker at NewsXchange (By Jenifer Johnston, The National [Scotland], 4 November 2018)
The Guardian US and Eagle Eye student newspaper scoop Global Youth and News Media Prize (By Caroline Scott, Journalism.co.uk, 14 November 2018.
The award presentation, 15 November 2018. (11 minutes)
Image below: The Eagle Eye staff members covering the march
[ Photo from The Eagle Eye ]