Adapting to the New Norm


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On Oct. 28, 2020, the Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District High School Journalism Network hosted their first press conference of the 2020-2021 school year. They brought in guest speaker Adam Coleman, a high school sports editor for the Houston Chronicle. 


Coleman talked to journalism students about criticism and how accepting it helped in his journalism career. He attended Texas Tech where he learned how to write and the process of getting his articles edited.

CFISD Journalism talk with Adam Coleman via Zoom (Angel Verdejo)

 “Accepting criticism, it became something where I welcome it,” Coleman said. “That was definitely one challenge just trying to understand how to welcome it and that it doesn’t mean that oh you’re bad and you suck or anything like that, it just means hey take this opportunity learn and keep trying to get better.” 


Coleman spoke with journalism students across the district about a variety of topics, including his personal experience starting out at the Houston Chronicle, the difficulty of reporting COVID-19, and social issues. Throughout the conference, he focused on the importance of adapting to the changing times.


“You have to roll with the punches and keep going,” Coleman said, giving advice to the students. “Since everyday something happens, journalists have to be prepared to cover that.”


Coleman expressed how COVID-19 has changed so many procedures about what journalists have to do and how they do it. He added to his thoughts about the new adjustments and the protocols that have stemmed from the pandemic.


“It’s difficult, we tried to do things the way we normally do them but when you’re trying to go cover things you kind of have to remember that it’s not the same and it’s different. Like how you have to wear a mask everywhere you go and we still have photographers taking pictures you have to cover a game standing on the sidelines which is a little bit different and people aren’t familiar with it.” 


The first press conference of the year was a new experience for everyone. Even though it was not in a normal set up, students were still able to learn from Coleman and what he had to say about journalism and reporting.