Virtual SXSW Allow Wider Reach, Deeper Experience

In response to COVID-19 safety measures, the 2021 South by Southwest event went virtual – one more unwelcome change to a city whose culture relies on being the live music capital of the world. However, almost a year into the pandemic, McCallum students and SXSW employees who I reached out to took a more creative […]

Overworked from Overtime

I remember the story pitch vividly: “We could write about how Ms. Richter also works as a cashier at Central Market because she can’t support her family on a teacher salary alone.” This story had to be told. Though Ms. Richter didn’t know me, I reached out to her and asked for an interview. As […]

Remembering Yolanda Zertuche

At the beginning of my junior year, the MacJournalism Instagram account got a DM asking if we could post information about a benefit lunch being held by the family of former McCallum custodian Yolanda Zertuche, who had recently passed away. Due to a mistake in paperwork, the family was being held responsible for the looming […]

A band-aid for a bullet wound

The Uvalde school shooting roughly 160 miles from Austin set the tone for the start of my junior year. McCallum students like me were greeted with a myriad of new regulations intended to improve student safety on campus. While I appreciated the school administration’s proactive approach toward safety, the messaging was lacking. Locking doors, monitoring […]

Outdated Mac should be included in bond proposal

The summer before my junior year, AISD announced a list of campuses set to receive full and partial modernizations. McCallum was not one of them. Built in 1953, we’re the second oldest high school in the district, suffering from recent gas leaks, rain damage and wild animal break-ins. It was the staff’s unanimous agreement for […]

It all matters in the Long run

I originally only took this assignment because Ms. Long had been my freshman Algebra 2 teacher, and I needed to pick up a second writing assignment. That is the honest truth. But during our interview, I learned something I should have already known, that there was more to Ms. Long’s story than I thought. I […]

Clear eyes, full heart

For my first story on newspaper staff, I was assigned what most first-year staffers were assigned — a new teacher feature. The editors’ idea was to give newbies a story that wouldn’t be too much of a heavy lift, but was still a high interest topic for Issue one coverage. I was assigned to cover […]

I don’t want to lose a teacher or classmate to Covid-19

I was appalled when the district announced the reopening of schools – a move that would allow students the choice to remain virtual, but would fail to grant district teachers the same choice. I wrote a letter to the AISD superintendent of schools to advocate for my teachers. After writing my first draft, I sent […]

Beautiful blue eyes

I wrote this column as part of the (virtual) Gloria Shields workshop in 2021. I was given the assignment to write about “a defining moment” while visiting my terminally ill grandpa in Florida. I didn’t need to look far for inspiration, and mostly wrote the piece to cope with the grief I was experiencing. My […]

Alamo Drafthouse finds a way

For our third issue of the 2020-21 school year, I pitched the idea of writing about the new phenomenon of renting out movie theaters for private showings during COVID-19. My family had done it a few weeks prior, and I figured I could find others who taken advantage of this popular new offering. After a […]

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