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  • Writer's pictureOscar Amos

Past, Present, and Prospects: An Interview with Editor-in-Chief, Kaya Long

Updated: Feb 19

After assuming the position of editor-in-chief during her second year in Parker Press, Kaya Long began her three-year tenure in the role, setting the bar effortlessly high. For the entirety of her high school career, Kaya has intrinsically built what is now known as Parker Press. Without her consistent and passionate coordination, communication, and editing, Parker Press would lack its countless essential facets. Her involvement with the student body is reflected excellently in the club's motivation towards the publication. In this interview, we peer into the world of the editor-in-chief to reflect on her time in the role and explore the responsibility involved.


1. What does journalism mean to you?

To me, journalism is a way to enforce communication and I think that in a school setting, it empowers students to voice what they're passionate about and do their research to accurately inform the public about various things happening around the community and the world.


2. What inspired you to become the editor-in-chief of the Parker Press?

My freshman year was my first year in Parker Press and that was when it was a brand new club. That year I was a little intimidated because I was one of the only freshmen in the club, but I was really passionate about what I was doing and I would write an article every week because back then we posted every single week. I just got a lot of fulfillment out of the research process, diving into one topic every week, learning about that, and then getting to turn that into an article, then publishing that so my school community could learn about that as well. Then at the end of the year, Ms. Smith asked me if I would assume the editor-in-chief role, and of course, I said yes because I was really passionate about the club and I wanted to be able to dictate its direction and put my full effort into helping it flourish at Parker School.


3. Can you walk me through the process of putting together an issue of the paper?

I would say it starts in the club, where I ask the members what they want to contribute to that posting. Maybe we'll do a little bit of brainstorming to figure out if there are any topics that we definitely want to include in the next posting. Then from there, I might write my own article, which is a part of the process of putting together a posting as well. Then on the weekend before the posting on Monday, I will remind people who haven't turned in their content about the posting or at least check up on them to see what the status is. Then I will go through and edit any articles that need editing. I generally try to edit all the articles because I think it's good to have a round of quality control to make sure that everything being published is up to a certain level of quality. From there, you have to basically tackle Wix, which is uploading all the articles to the site and making sure they’re cover photos, all the authors are listed, assigning categories to the posts, updating the joke, all those things. It's a little bit of a process but I enjoy it. It's very rewarding on Monday when all the posts come out and you can see everyone's work up there.


4. What role does Parker Press’s social media play in promoting the paper and engaging with readers?

I think that our Instagram platform allows us to be more accessible to people our age because I think that Instagram is our primary social network for people our age. We're able to reach out to our peers and advertise our content in a way that's really engaging and interesting to them. I think it helps expand our audience in that way. It also allows us to get creative with how we're advertising so we can do little videos, surveys, stories, and all those things.


5. What is your favorite series within Parker Press’s collection of articles, and why?

I was thinking about this a lot because I feel like I like all of them for different reasons. That's hard–I think the first one that comes to mind is the First Love series. I think I'm a little bit biased, but I think it's such a good idea that Genevieve initially came up with, just kind of seeing more into the personal side of teachers, but in an anonymous way. It's not violating their privacy, but it kind of just shows that we're all human, and loving people is a universal experience that we all go through. I think in every installation of that, you can take something away from it and I really like that. I also like the In Defense Of series because it shows one of the things I love about journalism, which is how people can share what they're passionate about on a larger scale. And then of course I love Oscar’s Interviews because I think that we see faculty members around school every day, but we don't know how they got here or what their story is, and I enjoy getting an inside look at their life.


6. Is journalism something that you have considered pursuing, and if so why?

Journalism is something I've considered pursuing. When I was actually in fourth grade, I discovered what a journalist was and I immediately thought, “Oh yes, I want to do this.” Then I went to a museum when I was younger with my grandma and she showed me this wall of all these journalists that have been shot and killed overseas because they were these war correspondents and I thought, “You know what, I don't want to be a journalist anymore.” Then I realized when I got older that there are many different kinds of journalists and you don't have to go report in Afghanistan. I think recently I've gotten really interested in investigative journalism. I've listened to podcast series that have investigated stories that I think really need to be told. I think that aspect of journalism is something I'm really interested in. I think it's something I'll definitely explore in college, but I’m not committed to anything yet.


7. What is your favorite part of being the editor-in-chief of Parker Press?

I think I just like being in a position of empowerment where I can help inspire the club members to really pursue what they're passionate about. I can help brainstorm ideas to ultimately push the club forward. I just kind of see my role as kind of making decisions that are in the best interest of the club because that's something I'm passionate about. I know that I personally will put in my best effort to advance the club to the best of my ability. I just love getting to support a cause I'm really passionate about, which is fostering community and communication.


8. How do you foster community within the club?

I think that just having open brainstorming sessions for one, is helpful because it shows that everyone's opinions and interests are valuable and they all contribute something unique to the club. I also really like the Member of the Month because I feel like it gives the club members an opportunity to, well, one, be recognized for their efforts, but two, kind of reflect on the efforts of their peers and thoughtfully nominate one of them to be recognized. I think that also helps foster community and then also I think series in general foster community because people can continue something that was started a while ago and that multiple people have contributed to continuing.


9. What has been your favorite addition to Parker Press that you have implemented, and why?

I kinda already said this, but I like the Member of the Month for the reasons I previously stated. But I guess to kind of revisit that, I think it's important for people that step up and put in exceptional amounts of work into something to be recognized for their efforts. I think it encourages them to continue to put that same amount of effort in and it shows that their dedication does not go unnoticed–I think that's a valuable aspect of the club.


10. What advice do you have for aspiring journalists or members of the Parker Press?

I think that in terms of aspiring journalists, if journalism is something that you're interested in, Parker Press is a great way to get involved in something that could lead you down that path in college. Being a part of a journalism club is a good prerequisite to majoring in journalism in college and that will look good on a college resume. But aside from that, you'll actually get a little bit of insight into different kinds of writing within the journalism industry because there are lots of different ways you can go. You can be an opinion piece writer, you could do more investigative journalism, there are lots of different options. And then in terms of people that just want to be a part of Parker Press, I would say obviously join the club, and then when you do, just put your full effort into it–write only what you're passionate about writing. It shouldn't feel like a chore because it's not a class, it's a club that you're choosing to be a part of. So make sure that it's giving you fulfillment by choosing to pursue things you're interested in. I think creating content that involves interviewing other people is a really great way to get passionate about something because then you're engaging with someone else and you're helping to share their story with other people, which for me is a very inspiring thing.

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2件のコメント


Britta Zimmer
Britta Zimmer
2月20日

Excellent article, well done, Oscar ( and Kaya :)

いいね!

Isabella Russo
Isabella Russo
2月19日

We ♡ Kaya

いいね!
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