Meet the journalism camp mentors, by the numbers


John Gibson sits down to discuss the workshop.

When 20 area high school journalism students converge on Northern Kentucky University’s campus, a group of experienced mentors will be waiting to challenge them with an immersive journalism experience.

The 2016 Journalism in the Digital Age camp is an opportunity for high school students to learn from current NKU students and faculty.

While the mentors come from different areas of expertise, there are some things that group them together. Here are the Journalism in the Digital Age mentors, by the numbers.

10: Ten student mentors, all with different experiences, will help out with this workshop throughout the week. The roles include story editing, video editing, and social media engagement as well as coaching the students as the week progresses.

Not only does everyone have different skills, several students have experience working with kids and leading in real world situations.

Sydney Wege, social media editor for the workshop, has been a counselor for day camps around Boone County in Northern Kentucky.

“I was looking to get more involved in school and when I saw the poster I thought it looked interesting and I had to get involved,” Wege said.

She also started working as a peer coach in the informatics advising center helping incoming freshmen determine their schedules and plans for the next four years at NKU.

This workshop will be an entirely new challenge for her.

“I’m excited to get to work with them kids and help them be successful,” Wege said. “I want to be a high school teacher some day and it will help me see what that would be like.”

Emily Sherry, a journalism major, has been involved in leadership through NKU’s Freshman Service Leadership Committee and a mentor for Leadership Mentors on campus.

“I love mentoring and helping young students make big transitions in their lives,” Sherry said. “I’m excited to see where all of the students are at and see them interact with new people.”    

1: Derek Daley will be the one returning mentor from last year’s Journalism in the Digital Age. Daley is a senior web designer for the Northerner and is in charge of putting all of the student made content online for the world to see.

Since he is the only returning mentor, his experience will be vital to the success of the other mentors.

“I think my experience will be important to the success of this workshop,” Daley said. “I know what to look for and the things that went well in the past and things that didn’t go well in the past. I can give that advice to the other mentors to help them succeed as well as help the high school students get through the week and have fun.”

Nate Weyman attended the camp as a high schooler and has returned as a mentor this year. His experience as a former camper will give him a unique perspective and will be able to relate to the student in this year’s camp.


He also knows the importance of getting one step ahead of other journalism students and hopes to give the students in this camp that one step ahead.

“I want to be able to have as big of an impact on them as my mentors had on me,” Weyman said. “It will be important to show them important things to know when it is time for them to come to college.”

Alec Reynolds talks about his experience with student media.



5: Five professional mentors with backgrounds from journalism to video to photography will lead workshop sessions. Michele Day, the founding director of the workshop, launched the program eight years ago. She was a journalist at the Kentucky Post before coming to NKU to be a professor. This workshop is one of the most important things she does at NKU.


“This is one of the most rewarding experiences in my teaching career,” Day said.


She will be assisted by filmmaker John Gibson, who is also a professor at NKU and an avid Star Wars enthusiast. He will  teach students how to operate cameras and strategies for making videos. He will be joined by freelance photographer Bruce Crippin, who will be teaching the strategies to good photography.

Former journalist and current Lakota East High School journalism teacher Dean Hume will also assist students. And Alyssa Appelman, associate professor of journalism at NKU, will lead sessions on copyediting and news writing.