American Cancer Society’s annual Great American Smokeout Mock News Conference was recently held at City Centre
American Cancer Society’s annual Great American Smokeout Mock News Conference was held on Oct. 31, 2013 at City Centre. The event gives middle and high school students in health education and journalism classes the opportunity to gain real-world experience as journalists and prevention advocates.
Arvin High School student reporter Xochitl Ramos and her cameraman and sound technician were among the dozens of local students who came out for the event. They were working on a story about tobacco use prevention that will air on Arvin High’s “Bear 9 News,” a campus news program.
“It’s all about educating teens about important topics,” Ramos said. “We have also been working with KBAK Eyewitness News on a ‘text you later’ campaign.”
After a panel discussion, which included health officials, educators and a fellow student journalist, students in the audience had the opportunity to ask questions in preparation for their news stories/articles/video PSAs that are required to be completed as part of the program. Students received insight and story assignments from Myron Levin, former Los Angeles Times investigative journalist who covered big tobacco for many years before founding Fair Warning, a nonprofit investigative news organization based in Los Angeles that is focused on public health and safety issues and business accountability.
Last year, student journalist Bella Corona’s winning article was published in the Bakersfield Californian’s B-Well Magazine.