By Sidhartha Wakade
The Morgan County High School Digital Media Program was recognized as the best new media program of the year out of 500 eligible schools by the National Federation of High Schools (NFHS).
The NFHS provides high schools with the technology to produce content as well as a platform to stream it. NFHS Network Awards are given to programs within their first year that show “the highest levels of productions,” according to a Morgan County High School press release.
Tom White, the digital media instructor at the high school, said that the award was the culmination of the year’s work. White aimed to get Morgan County High School recognized, he explained.
“My goal when I came here was to kind of put Morgan County as a school on the map in terms of the digital space,” White said. “My goal was to make it something that people recognized.”
Part of getting the program recognized means intense coursework. White mentioned that he runs the class like a business. His students produced 130 sportscasts and over 120 newscasts streams, he said.
Another part of the class is that what the students produce is used for more than just grades.
“One of my personal goals as a teacher is that none of the work that they do in here dies in my grade book,” White said. “It’s all something that we can use for the news, or just post it one the website or social media.”
The program is still very new, and White thinks that there is still more work to be done, especially in the long run.
“I think we’re just getting started,” he said. “I’m thinking five or six years down the road.”
While winning awards is appreciated, White’s main focus is growing the program and helping the students.
“I don’t care about awards,” he said. “They’re nice, but the student win is what I’m more concerned with.”