DHS Students Receive Writing Recognition

Filed under: Schools |

Teaching journalism for over twelve years, Duncanville High School teacher James Rich has seen many talented students in his classes. But he says two of his most skilled reporters are in his class this year. “Allie Peregory and Tatiana Marceleno are true journalists. They have a heart and a passion to tell peoples’ stories. Whether those stories are sad or joyful, they’re both truly professional in their coverage of the news.” That’s why Rich has nominated Peregory and Marceleno for two prestigious opportunities.

photo provided by Duncanville ISD

A  junior and senior respectively at DHS, Peregory and Marceleno both started their journalism careers during their freshman years. They say they “fell” into the field by accident, taking Rich’s class with the intent to pursue a job in the medical industry. “I started writing for the newspaper and yearbook and found out that I really liked it,” said Peregory. “It took me by surprise. I decided my sophomore year that I wanted to pursue journalism instead.”

Rising through the ranks, Peregory now holds the position of Managing Editor for Duncanville High School’s Panther Prints newspaper. Marceleno is the paper’s Editor in Chief. “They have been the glue that holds Panther Prints together,” commented Rich. “They work well together and with the other staff members in our attempt to cover the school and community with pride. When it seems that no one else will go out and get the job done, these two girls always pick up the slack.”

Nominating Peregory to represent Texas as a National Youth Correspondent at the 2012 Washington Journalism and Media Conference, Rich says she deserves to be among the best high school journalists. “I have watched her grow, and she has always shown true courage. No matter what the cost of getting a story, Allie is going to get it out to her audience.” Rich has also nominated Marceleno to receive the Newspaper Editor of the Year award from the Interscholastic League Press Conference (ILPC). “I believe her work speaks for itself on both a state and national level,” he said. “Tatiana goes beyond the norm when it comes to reporting. She has taken on the challenge of transitioning to become a photographer and videographer as well.”

The Washington Journalism and Media Conference is a weeklong program that offers behind-the-scenes insight into the dynamic world of media through experiential learning, guest lectures, and networking opportunities with leaders and innovators in the journalism community. It’s being held at George Mason University this summer. One of only 250 high school students who will attend from across the country, an acceptance letter states that Peregory was chosen based on academic accomplishments and demonstrated leadership skills. “I’m looking forward to hands-on experiences and seeing how a nationally broadcast newsroom operates,” she said. “I feel really blessed. This is an opportunity that you can’t pass up.”

The ILPC Newspaper Editor of the Year award is a prestigious recognition offered to only one high school student in the state. Nominees must demonstrate exceptional leadership qualities and submit a portfolio showing a wide variety of work. “It was fun to go back through all of my reports,” commented Marceleno. “One of my favorites was about a boy named Tristan Russell who suffered a severe injury. I developed a bond with him and his family. Tristan’s parents work at DHS, and I go to plays just to see him. I feel that story helped me develop my skill to write in-depth.” Marceleno will find out if she won Editor of the Year at the ILPC Spring Convention in April. If so, she’ll move on to national competition. “It makes me feel great to be in the running for something this prestigious. My parents are also really proud.”

Sharing Tatiana’s belief that developing bonds is the best part of their chosen career path, Allie plans to attend the University of Texas or the University of Missouri to study communications. She aspires to work for a big newspaper like the Dallas Morning News. Tatiana has been accepted to the University of Texas as well as Texas Christian University. She’ll study journalism or communications and aspires to work for a television news station.