01 Dec Eagle Nation News: Take 1 BY LUCY TOWLE
When it comes to the news and information, PISD is meeting the call. From the Elementary News Casts to the District App and newsletters, anyone can find the answers to the latest news. Yet there is one special newscast that is making its name known nationwide: Prosper High School’s Eagle Nation News (ENN).
Brian Kennedy, director of ENN, came on scene at Prosper High School three years ago and believes media creates culture.
“We are losing our connection in society as social media leads the culture of community. I want to help us bring back our connection with more than a mere moment by talking about things that impact us as a whole,” he said.
ENN has seen this first hand with a special segment they created regarding teen anxiety and depression. Prior to broadcasting the segment, Mr. Kennedy partnered along with the SMU Center for Family Counseling and the high school counselors. The news team understood the intensity this message would bring, and their heart for the message was sincere. They understood this segment would impact students, those who have friends who have been affected by depression and those who are hurting today. Once the segment aired, several students responded and sought support with the school counselors. This could only happened because of how the story impacted them. Students need to feel like their voice matters and having serious segments provide them with a chance to be heard.
The newscast has tackled various hard-hitting topics. Broadcasters have recently interviewed candidates at the Presidential Forum held in October at Prestonwood Baptist Church. They have addressed cancer awareness, the dangers of texting and driving and the online bullying that often comes through social media. These ENN students are talking about issues that matter.
Mr. Kennedy recognizes the need to connect the ENN newscast with professionals in their field. They visited news stations and were guests of Channel 8’s Daybreak at WFAA studios in Victory Park. They have seasoned newscasters such as Mark Fein, Ron Corning, and Alexis Conomos mentor and guide the ENN team. These professionals took personal time to help ENN students to see the connections between the high school and professional news experience on a daily basis.
One of the most unique things about Eagle Nation News is how it is being broadcast. Most area student broadcasts are recorded and edited before they are pushed live to their school. When it comes to the Eagle Nation News, however, that is not even a consideration.
It is through these amazing experiences that Eagle Nation News is getting their name out nationally in recent competitions.
– 2014, they received first place Broadcast Story of the Year for Sports Feature from the National Scholastic Press Association (NSPA)
– 2014 – Second place Broadcast Story of the Year for News Feature by NSPA
– 2014 – Top 10 News Broadcast in the Nation by NSPA
– Top broadcast in the state of Texas awarded by the Interscholastic League Press Conference.
Their goal is to achieve a Broadcast Pacemaker, the top prize in the nation for scholastic journalism through the National Student Press Association.“Our newscasts are live daily and they stream live to the web and are received around the world. Students work diligently to research topics and stick to a show rundown, however, unlike other places, our students do their news live and our audience is loving it.”
See what the Eagle Nation News is doing now. You can find them on NFHSnetwork.com