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ESPN sportscaster, Loyola alumnus is celebrity guest for high school journalism competition

Loyola press release - February 3, 2014

ESPN sportscaster Michael Smith ‘01 will return to his alma mater to give New Orleans high school students a taste of what it’s like to be a journalist in today’s world of digital media. The Loyola University New Orleans School of Mass Communication alumnus will join fellow ESPN sports journalists to headline a free, public panel at the 37th annual Tom Bell Silver Scribe Competition for high school journalists Saturday, Feb. 15 at 3 p.m. in room 402 of Loyola’s Communications/Music Complex.

Free parking for attendees is available in the West Road Garage on the university’s main campus. High school and college students from around the New Orleans area are encouraged to attend.

Smith, who co-hosts the “Numbers Never Lie” program weekdays on ESPN2, will join co-host Jemele Hill and 20-year ESPN veteran Keith Goralski on the panel. The trio of professional journalists will discuss multimedia storytelling and producing the news for all platforms, including print, TV and the Web.

The public panel and high school journalism competition is co-sponsored by Loyola’s School of Mass Communication and the Press Club of New Orleans. Named after the late Tom Bell, a longtime Loyola journalism teacher and a former Press Club president, the competition features professional journalists as judges who will choose winners for various categories, including best news story, best news photograph and best overall newspaper. One high school will also win the sweepstakes award for the most points amassed by students from one school. The full competition, which attracts more than 50 high school students hailing from six or more local schools, will run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

“This is an exclusive opportunity for budding high school journalists to meet professional journalists from ESPN—including one of our own graduates—and hear about how they are harnessing the power of social media and multimedia to do their jobs well,” said Sonya F. Duhé, Ph.D., Loyola professor and director of the School of Mass Communication. “At Loyola’s School of Mass Communication, we are focused on providing students with exactly these kinds of skills needed to excel in the world of digital media.”

For media interviews, please contact Mikel Pak, Loyola's associate director of public affairs.