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Defiance News Network lets students explore broadcast journalism

Defiance High School’s reimagined broadcast news program turns students into storytellers
Published: Mar. 10, 2021 at 6:50 PM EST
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DEFIANCE, Ohio (WTVG) - Defiance High School is reimagining its news program on campus.

The show is called “Defiance News Network” -- or DNN -- a play on news network CNN.

Teacher Eric West says the course helps students step out of their comfort zones and explore news and storytelling in a new way.

“When we first started it was just radio announcements,” said West. “It was 5 minutes in the morning, and bare walls, and minimal sound equipment. And kind of very basic editing. And now it looks really good. The kids have bought into what I told them: I said we’re going to take it seriously. If we take it seriously, they’ll take us seriously.”

Students get to learn about news writing, editing, camerawork, anchoring — even presenting the weather. The class is also bi-weekly, taking one week to write and produce a newscast, and then filming and editing the full segment in week two.

”It’s made me feel more independent, and put me outside of my comfort zone,” said senior Summer Lirot.

“Broadcasting is very interesting stuff,” adds sophomore Ethan Ingle. I like learning how a production really is set in stone, how it really works.”

Even though some of these students don’t plan on becoming broadcast journalists down the line, they are still grateful to be part of history at Defiance High School.

”I just think it’s important to like stay true to what you believe, what you’re writing, and get your message out there,” said Liv Adams, a senior at Defiance High. ”Be as truthful as you can, and have as many resources as you can, to make sure that the people know what you’re talking about, they they know you know what you’re talking about.”

The are currently two broadcast classes with a combined total of 40 students. West says the goal is to continue expanding the program, upgrading the studio, and eventually growing the broadcast throughout Defiance City Schools.

If you’d like to watch DNN or learn more about the program, you can watch their clips on their Google website.

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