FHN Senior Named the 2020 JEA Student Journalist of the Year for Missouri

Posted on 03/05/2020
Emily Hood and FHN students


As a freshman at FHN, Emily Hood was very shy and timid but had an eager interest in learning anything and everything she could. That passion for education led her to a passion for journalism. Now, four years later, Hood is a confident and well-spoken executive producer of FHNtoday’s video team and has been named the 2020 Journalism Education Association (JEA) Student Journalist of the Year for Missouri.

FHN students surprise Emily Hood“Emily has worked so hard for the past four years in the journalism program,” shared FHN Director of Student Media Aaron Manfull. “She’s done so much. There isn’t a creative area that she hasn’t touched, whether that is writing, design, photography, or video.” During her freshman year, Hood started a weekly news show, The Hood Report, that highlights everything from pop culture to politics.

One of Hood’s most recent projects, a four-part video series titled “Life After,” takes a look at the obstacles and challenges faced by recently released prisoners. Hood is determined to let the voices of others be heard in her work and in society. She serves as a representative on the national Quill and Scroll student board and has worked at the level state to try and get legislation passed for more press rights for high school students.

From left: Aaron Manfull, Dr. Nathan Hostetler, Emily Hood, Dr. Mary Hendricks-Harris“She’s an incredible leader among her peers,” said Manfull. In October of 2018, the broadcast program at FHN shifted its focus to newer video journalism realities that include podcasts, social media motion graphics, and more. “It’s been a gamechanger for the broadcast program at FHN and wouldn’t have been possible without Emily’s approval, ideas, and execution to make it work,” said Manfull.

To celebrate Hood’s award as Journalist of the Year, her peers, teachers, administrators, and District Superintendent Dr. Mary Hendricks-Harris, all surprised her with a little party. “This isn’t a win just for me, but a win for the whole school,” said Hood. “Everybody puts in so much work here.” Emily will move on to the national Student Journalist of the Year competition and will be recognized at the National Scholastic Press Association (NSPA)/JEA national convention in Nashville this April.

After high school, Hood plans to continue her passion for journalism at the University of Missouri. As for her long-term goals, her dream is to move to Washington D.C. and work for the New York Times or Washington Post. With her incredible creativity and talent, she is well on her way towards the Capitol.

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