JEA Awards go to Hawaii scholastic journalism advocates

Congratulations to Jay Hartwell for being recognized by the Journalism Education Association as a Friend of Scholastic   Journalism. Here Hartwell is hosting the 2021 Hawaii Scholastic Journalism Awards Ceremony. Read the press release here.

Jay Hartwell

Jay Hartwell’s career began 41 years ago as a newspaper reporter, then as the author of the Hawaii’s 1997 Book of the Year. For 20 years he served as the award-winning faculty adviser to student media programs at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, while organizing annual journalism days and competitions for high school students.

When Cindy Reves, CJE, began her work with the New Voices Hawaii movement in 2016, Hartwell was listed as the contact person. Together, they created the Hawaii Scholastic Journalism Association. Reves took the lead in pursuit of this legislation, but Hartwell made sure she was always supported.

“[Hartwell] made sure that he or someone from the university was in the room to support with testimony or just their presence,” Reves said.

Hartwell’s impact on scholastic journalism reaches far and wide, as students and advisers alike benefit from his knowledge and experience. “​​It’s clear that he spent many years as a newspaper reporter and editor who wasn’t afraid to ask the tough questions,” Jessica Hanthorn, CJE, adviser at Mid-Pacific Institute said. “But it’s also evident that he truly believes in sharing his skills and knowledge with a new generation of journalists.”

Jessica Hanthorn, CJE

For Jessica Hanthorn, CJE, creating student leaders in her program is of the utmost importance. While empowering those leaders is one of her primary goals, just as important is creating a sense of belonging for her staff members.

“Some students aren’t great athletes, nor are they honors students or involved with theater or the arts,” Hanthorn said. “It’s those students — who might not have a place yet in high school — who I encouraged to come to journalism. In journalism, they find a group of people who are passionate about what they do, work hard to produce a great product and have fun doing it.”

Currently teaching at Central Kitsap High School in Silverdale, Washington, Hanthorn played an active role in New Voices while teaching at Na Pueo at Mid-Pacific Institute in Hawaii. Though Na Pueo is a private school, Hanthorn embraced how important scholastic press rights are to the work of student journalists. Even though a New Voices law would not have any legal bearing at the school, Hanthorn worked tirelessly on the Hawaii Student Journalism Protection Bill.

Her dedication to scholastic journalism and press rights is contagious. Students like Kamm Kojima come into her class thinking it’s going to be a “cool experience,” but journalism quickly becomes part of their identity.

“Not only is Hanthorn qualified on paper, but through her teaching,” Kojima said. “Because of her passion, dedication and teaching style, I have decided to minor in journalism. It’s who I am. I’m Kamm Kojima, sports editor for Na Pueo, and I wear that title with pride.”

Congratulations also to Jessica Hanthorn for being recognized as a JEA Rising Star. Read the press release here. Hanthorn advised Na Pueo, the student news outlet for Mid-Pacific Institute.