School & Community News

Student reporters shine at Spring Celebration
June 5, 2023

Healthy NewsWorks student reporters were on stage and on the big screen for our 2023 Spring Celebration at Community College of Philadelphia on May 23

Community members, students, and family members joined us for the evening’s activities, which included displays of student newspapers, their artwork, and our By Kids, For Kids magazine, all featuring topics related to the 2022-23 Healthy NewsWorks theme, “Caring for Our Earth and Ourselves.” 

During the on-stage portion of the event, the audience enjoyed a morning news-style program with student-produced video shorts on topics ranging from eco-anxiety to a behind-the-scenes field trip to the Academy of National Sciences of Philadelphia at Drexel University. 

Several student reporters also conducted live interviews with special guests Howard Stevenson, Ph.D., Constance Clayton Professor of Urban Education and Professor of Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, and Tim Massaquoi, L.P.C., clinical director of The Ladipo Group in Philadelphia. 

“How can you encourage people to care about climate change if they don’t think it is a big issue?” Ava, a sixth-grade reporter for the Stewart Healthy Times in Norristown, asked Dr. Stevenson. 

Dr. Stevenson said he’d probably first try to build a relationship based on mutual respect, asking about times the other person had taken a school trip to the woods or gone swimming in the ocean. Then he might ask how they’d feel if they or their children couldn’t do such things. “Then maybe, if I’m really lucky, I could slip in a little bit about the science around climate change,” he said.

Mr. Massaquoi was asked by Katelynn, a fifth grader and Healthy NewsWorks alumna: “How do you think nature can have a positive effect on people?”

“There is an actual therapy that’s called ecotherapy,” he said. “And ecotherapy is about being outside in nature and connecting with nature as a healing source for emotional and physical things. Just being outside, catching sun, feeling a breeze, breathing fresh air is really important for our health. We really need to continue to do our part as well to keep nature healthy.”

Thank you to all who attended the event and those who have contributed to its success, including our Event Host Committee, Quest Diagnostics volunteers, caterer Misconduct Tavern, and Community College media services team. 

 “We are grateful to all the community members who have shared their time and knowledge with our young reporters and to the individuals and organizations who have contributed this year,” said Marian Uhlman, Healthy NewsWorks executive director.

Photo: Healthy NewsWorks student reporters get a standing ovation during the finale.

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Since 2003, Healthy NewsWorks has been empowering elementary and middle school students to become researchers, writers, and confident communicators who advance health understanding and literacy through their factual publications and digital media.