January 2021 … Two Healthy NewsWorks alumni advanced their journalism credentials this month with bylines published in The Philadelphia Inquirer and The Philadelphia Tribune.
Amani Rivers and Kayla Johnson, who are now Philadelphia high school students, got their reporting starts as eighth grade staff members on the St. Martin de Porres Healthy Saint, which has been part of the Healthy NewsWorks program for several years.
Amani is now a junior at William Penn Charter School and participated recently in the Acel Moore High School Journalism Workshop sponsored by The Inquirer. Amani wrote an opinion piece about the challenges of being a high school student during the pandemic.
Kayla, a freshman at Cristo Rey Philadelphia, was selected to participate in a national high school workshop with the Washington, D.C.-based Urban Health Media Project. She wrote about a man who experienced trauma in childhood and now serves as a mentor for teenagers affected by violence.
Among their earlier experiences as Healthy NewsWorks reporters, Amani and Kayla took on additional projects beyond contributing to the Healthy Saint. Amani interviewed Kevin Bethel, a retired deputy police commissioner for the Philadelphia Police Department, for Healthy NewsWorks’ Leading Healthy Change In Our Communities 2018.
Kayla last spring interviewed Dr. David Kessler, a former head of the Food and Drug Administration, as part of Healthy NewsWorks’ Health Beat Live interviews. Dr. Kessler was recently chosen by President Joe Biden to lead the federal efforts to develop and distribute coronavirus vaccines and treatments.