Students at one Kearney school are learning what it takes to be in the news business.
Kearney High School's new media production class is teaching kids the ins and outs of creating a news broadcast. Forty students will be honing their skills this year in interviewing, editing, story creation and on-camera delivery.
"Our student newspaper, "The Echo," was transitioning from a newspaper to a magazine and a web-based news forum, and the two just kind of melded together for 21st century media," Dr. Jay Dostal, Kearney High School principal, said. "I felt it was very important that we have something to showcase what we do well at Kearney High School and Kearney Public Schools."
It was a huge undertaking for the school, but officials say it has been well worth it, and hopefully it will encourage students to pursue their dreams in television.
"I really hope that they get an idea of a number of different opportunities that are available to them in media -- whether that be working behind the camera, sitting in front of the desk doing the reporting or both, but really exposing them to a number of different options," Dostal said.
Communications teacher Robert Goff says the students couldn't be more excited to get to work.
"They have been ecstatic," he said. "They really have enjoyed it. It's been tough at first because [of] getting our software in, and I'm learning as they're learning, which is a great thing. I love it when students teach teachers."
The class came with a hefty price tag -- it cost over $20,000 to get the necessary camera and lighting equipment, green screen and editing software, but school officials say donations have made it all possible.
"We've had a lot of very generous donors put up a lot of money to get this thing off the ground, and I want our kids to know that people out in the community really care about what we're doing at Kearney Public Schools," Dostal said.
"It's incredibly rewarding to us, and we just feel like we want to duplicate this for other classes that could just be an idea in someone's head right now," Nancy Williams, Kearney Public Schools foundation director, said.
Goff says the class will create two 30-minute broadcasts to promote positive things going on in the district, and will air them on a local cable channel.