Sunday, June 21, 2015

Press Conference 101

In media, information is key. People use the information they receive from the media to make critical decisions throughout the day. To make a long story short, information is everything; therefore, you must carefully choose your words. This afternoon, I and my fellow journalism workshop participants had the pleasure of meeting Jacqueline Proctor, Deputy Commissioner of West Virginia Senior Services. She gave short remarks about her personal and professional life while inviting us into the world of mass communication. 

She provided us with an insurmountable amount of knowledge in the realm of journalism, providing us with four questions to ponder while interpreting media: Is there trust in the information you are conveying? Do you have credibility? Does integrity have meaning in the media? Is there enough diversity in the media? These questions aren't always hard to answer, but the truth might be. Mrs. Proctor gave us accounts of personal experiences in which she was "the only" as in the only woman or the only African-American. It was sadly enlightening to see how journalists and executives still faced sexism and racism in the 21st century. She overcame these odds to rise in the ranks in state government.

Proctor has held many high positions in state government, such as Press Secretary for Governor Earl Ray Tomblin. With this job, she gained experience in press conference etiquette, which she politely shared with us. Press conferences are the most pertinent way to release information to many media outlets at once. While press conferences can sometimes only last for twenty minutes, a lot of work goes into the production. You must send an alert to media outlets so they can be prepared to cover the event, then you will send the actual press release to outlets. You must make many follow-up calls to ensure those invited are attending and make press kits with pamphlets, flyers, and fact sheets. You should make sure you have set aside a room or location, including a sound system, podium, and seating. The days before you must establish your content, develop a list of attendees, and rehearse!

In press conferences, as well as life, you must be confident in what you say. As Mrs. Proctor said, "Words are the coin of your realm." She has been a part of the media from a time when they had no email, to the integration of the fax machine (see Wikipedia for an explanation as to what that is). Media is changing every day, and the so-called "new media" today will be "traditional media" ten years from now. Thanks to Mrs. Proctor, I have a better understanding of press conferences, the world of journalism, and how to find myself and what I want to do.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Extra! Extra! Newspaper Writers Needed!

With the end of this school year rapidly approaching and the last edition of The Valley Tribune being printed, the newspaper class is in desperate need of staff writers for the 2015-2016 school year. For scheduling purposes, Mrs. Dingess' newspaper class will be 8th period. Over the past few years, our newspaper program has gone through drastic changes in the name of improvement. I, being the editor-in-chief next year, believe that The Valley Tribune has the potential to be the best student newspaper in the area!

Now you may ask, "Why would I want to take newspaper class?" There are endless reasons, but just to name a few: you will have a vehicle for your beliefs and views, you can learn about the news industry and discover possible career fields, you can heighten your understanding of current events, and become a better writer! Current co-editor-in-chief Cody Straley believes, "Students are woefully uninformed in regards to current events, and that is why they should take newspaper class." The other co-editor-in-chief Shelby Bellomy said, "One of my favorite parts of the class was when we took a field trip to the United High School Media competition at Marshall!" By competing in the UHSM competition, students even have the chance to compete in a Media Challenge quiz bowl, which we won this year (pictured below)!

In conclusion, we desperately need writers for the 2015-2016 school year. If interested, you can speak to Mrs. Dingess, me (Eddie Stamper), or your counselor!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

2015 JROTC Banquet

         The Spring Valley JROTC banquet is coming up soon. It will be on May 1st at the main school located at the cafeteria. While other JROTC programs does a military ball, but Spring Valley JROTC does a banquet. This banquet is put on around the end of each school year by the Spring Valley JROTC. At this banquet they do many events their.
          First event they do, if they chose to do it, is the change of command. This is when this year Battalion Commander and Cadet Command Sergeant Major hand there positions over to the new Battalion Commander and Cadet Command Sergeant Major. When they do the exchange of command all the cadets who are there will get in a formation in there companies.
         Second event is when we go and inside and eat. When will have everybody goes inside and sit down the Chaplin will say prayer and everybody will go and eat. The high ranking cadets will be serving the food to the guests and the other cadets. At the banquet will be feeding spaghetti and other pastas. For deserts they usually is its a cake.
         Third, after they get down eating or everybody has gotten there food they will start the awards. These award shall be handed out by SFC Layne and LTC Damron. There are many awards that cadets can recieve. Here are a few things you could have down to get an award; top score for you LET level for the Cadet Challenge, Superior Cadet Award, overall best score for Cadet Challenge, and the list goes on.
       If you are a cadet it would be a fun and great experience for you take place. This is a great event for all cadets to take part of and I promise you that you will not regret going. Cadets will also be allowed to bring two guest from outside the school.

American Horror Story Season 5

     The well known television show American Horror Story will be premiering it's new season this coming October. This season's name is Hotel and Lady Gaga will be co-starring in it with some of the other well known actors in the show. However Jessica Lange, also known as Elsa Mars from the latest season Freakshow, will not be appearing this season. The making of Hotel is already in the works and is hoped to be even bigger than last season which was the show's biggest season yet.

       For those of you who don't know about AHS it's a television series. Each season of the show has a different setting and plot, but it all feeds into the category of being a horror show. The past seasons are Murder House, Asylum, Coven, and Freakshow. The first three seasons are on Netflix and if you have an account you should check it out.

Photos courtesy of:

Nepal Earthquake

 An Earthquake hit Nepal on Saturday April 25th with a magnitude of 7.8. At least 3,617 people have died and they are saying that 6,ooo are injured. One man was found 82 hours after the earthquake under some rubble at a hotel. The victim said he was forced to drink his own urine.  An avalanche on Mount Everest occurred after the Earthquake and three Americans were killed. A big aftershock occurred in Nepal, Bangladesh, and India on Sunday.

 Nepal is in desperate need of food and shelter. Children are hungry, freezing, and are at risk of getting disease. They are trying to send more rescue teams and get more shelter but it is very hard with so much damage and so many people. Hospital patients were forced outside and many people are sleeping outside their homes on carpet and mattresses. The worst part about these people who are sleeping outside because they lost their homes in the devastation is the heavy rain coming down on them in Nepal. We can only hope that more survivors are found, children and their families are receiving shelter and food, and that the injured are being taken care of.


The Gruesome Truth Behind Some of Your Favorite Disney Movies

                What you may not realize about the ever-so-classic Disney movies we all know and love today is that some of them were based on old folk tales that were passed down verbally for generations, and they weren’t as “happily ever after” as you were lead to think. Many Disney movies were inspired by very gruesome fireside stories.

Pinocchio – In the movies, Pinocchio was a mischievous wooden toy who wanted to become a real boy. This is very similar to the original story. However, when Pinocchio first leaves his home without his father’s permission. Out on his adventure, he encountered a fox and a cat, who steal his money and attempt to hang him. Fortunately, he escapes. Unfortunately, the talking cricket we all know as Jiminy? Pinocchio squashed him.

The Little Mermaid – Ariel, the daughter of King Triton, is a fan favorite amongst Disney Princess lovers, so not many of you will like hearing the truth about this Little Mermaid. After Ariel makes the deal with Ursula, she travels up to the human world to attempt to win the heart of the Prince. Unfortunately, every step she takes with her artificial legs gives her the feeling of walking on shard of glass. Days into her plan, Ariel feels like she is winning the Prince’s heart. But on the last day, the Prince leaves her for another woman. Broken hearted, Ariel throws herself into the sea and turns into sea foam.

The Hunchback of Notre Dame – This movie was an adaption by a book written by an author named Victor Hugo in 1829. However, this story in Disney’s movie was severely twisted around. Esmerelda captures the heart of Quasimodo by giving him water after he is flogged and put out in public exposure. Unfortunately, she also captures the heart of Judge Claude Frollo, Quasimodo’s adoptive father. Esmerelda is accused of attempted murder, and is hanged. When Quasimodo sees his father laughing at her death, he pushes him off of the heights of Notre Dame to his death. He later goes to Montfaucon, a huge cemetery where the bodies of the damned are dumped. He finds Esmerelda’s body and lays beside it, eventually starving to death. When their two bodies are found many years later, and are tried to be pulled apart, they crumple into dust.

Sleeping Beauty – We all know the tale about the power of true love’s kiss, as shown when the Prince kisses Princess Aurora and wakes her from her slumber. However, this isn’t how the original tale went. After Aurora was cursed into slumber, she was raped by a king who was most likely in his fifties. Twice.  She, while still asleep, got pregnant, and did not wake up until she felt extreme birth pains. After she gave birth to the king’s child, she was then forced to marry him in order to keep her child from being considered illegitimate.

The Fox and the Hound - Remember when Tod accidently got Copper's friend Chief run over by a train? Well, in the movie, Chief survives, but that's not what happened in Daniel P. Manix's original book. Chief actually dies in the original tale, and Copper, driven mad by a lust for revenge, kills Tod's first mate, second mate, and his cubs, and chases Tod for the rest of his life until Tod finally dies of exhaustion. A short while after Tod's death, Coppers master retires from hunting to a nursing home, but not before putting Copper down by shooting him in the head.

Cinderella - Possibly one of the most classic Disney Princess tales. Most of Disney's film adaption of this old fairy tale was accurate. Except for the outcome of Cinderella's step sisters. In the movie, they just have to live in jealousy of their sister's fortune and beauty for the rest of their lives, but in the old tale, when the prince arrives with the glass slippers, looking to find the woman he'd danced with, one of the step sister's cuts off her toes to try and fit her foot into the slipper, and the other slices off her heel, leaving them horribly disfigured and unable to walk for the rest of their lives.

WVU Band to Perform in Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade


The West Virginia University Marching Band, The Pride of West Virginia has been selected to perform in the 2016 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Out of 175 applicants, WVU was 1 of 10 bands chosen to perform.
  Wesley Whatley, creative director of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade said “As soon as we saw the halftime show from last fall, the committee responded to the energy and responded to the crowd response. The band is there to entertain the crowd, and we know that will translate to the New York streets for us,”
This will be the band's first time in the annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade which airs on NBC and is viewed by  over 50 million people and their first televised parade. 
“We’re excited about the opportunity,” said Jay Drury, the school’s director of athletic bands, “We’re very honored and humbled to be selected. We’re excited to have the opportunity to represent the state university on the world’s biggest stage in New York.''
Though it has not been confirmed, it is expected for the band to perform its take on John Denver's "Take me home, Country Roads" that was arranged in a medley by Professor, James Miltenberger.
“We want bands to celebrate their culture and history and identity in whatever way they like. We don’t ask about holiday songs, just anything the band loves as long as it is high energy and entertaining.” Whatley said.
This was WVU's first year applying to perform in the parade. They sent in footage from last fall where they performed an Armed Forces Tribute. They had to submit their application before the deadline of March 1st and the announcement that they had been selected was April, 25th.
 With 19 months to go before the parade takes place November 24, 2016 the West Virginia University Mountaineer Marching Band has plenty of time to prepare, and I'm sure that they will give a wonderful performance.