Summer is usually the quietest time around the Ohio State campus, as we teach just a smattering of classes and work slows down for full-time staffers.
But around the Journalism Building Thursday we had a full house, as I hosted 25 members of the Ohio State LiFE Sports Camp and Clinic in the Lantern newsroom to teach them a little bit about journalism and, hopefully, guide some of them toward a love of words and career in writing.
The opportunity came by way of my very good friend Becky Wade Mdivanian, who works in the College of Social Work and is a coordinator for the camp which teaches sports and life skills to 600 kids from the inner city of Columbus. For many of these kids, LiFE camp is the highlight of their summer, filled with swimming and athletics and dancing, plenty of food and air conditioning, and no shortage of counselor care.
My group of campers trotted over on a 100 degree day and took their spots across the newsroom, as we talked about how much we all like to tell our friends news that we learn first. I explained that was journalism in a nutshell, except we have a lot of friends we’ve never met, and what we say has to be true and fair and accurate. I then assigned them a “story,” which involved the fictitious theft of five computers–and a 5-pound bag of peanut M&Ms–from the newsroom.
My co-worker Jay, an amazingly good sport, provided the Lantern source, while I played a police source.
We roamed around the building looking at the entry point and how the thieves may have gotten away undetected. Then we came back, formed into eight groups, and wrote our stories.
It was so inspiring to see these kids writing notes and then turning those notes into the who, what, why, when, where and how of their first article. And when we were done, seven of the eight groups had written some semblance of an article which earned one our 2012 LiFE Camp Peltizer Prize (made of very stylish tin foil).
I proudly present our inaugural LiFE Peltizer winner, with the hope that it is the first of many such experiences to come.
OSU SUMMER BREAK-IN
By Jalen Hutchinson, JaJuan Watson and RaShawn Winfield
An unknown character or characters robbed the Lantern newsroom at OSU West Campus at the Lantern Journalism Building on June 27th or 28th between the hours of 10:00 pm and 9:00 am.
5 apple computers were stolen along with a 5lb bag of peanut m&ms. This unknown thief or thieves came into the rear of the mailroom.
We quote from the police “There are no signs of forced entry”.
If we don’t have a solution to this problem OSU has lost over $5,000 in computer equipment and products.
Some possible motives for this crime are revenge and the police say that there are no known witnesses and the cameras were not working at the moment so if anyone with possible information on this crime could come forward it would be appreciated.
The Lantern thanks you for your help.