Journalism teacher Mikel Brand and students Jackie Michel and Mariel Garcia attended the UIL State Competition at the University of Texas campus on Friday, May 4.
Freshman Jackie Michel competed in feature writing, senior Mariel Garcia competed in editorial writing, and Mrs. Brand judged news writing while in Austin.
“The state competition had so many more people than I was used to in other competitions,” Garcia said.
Garcia was returning to state from the year before, and was excited to experience it again.
“My favorite part was getting to go to Austin as well as knowing that I was able to go to state again,” Garcia said.
This was Mrs. Brand’s first time at state, and her first time to judge news writing.
“It was a real teaching experience,” Mrs. Brand said. “I had discussions with the other two judges about what should really be in a lead, and what shouldn’t. It was a learning experience.”
Michel was also a first-timer at state, and was nervous about the competition.
“I was shaking as they were calling roll, and it was pouring rain and thundering as we were writing, so it was really nerve-racking,” Michel said.
She was pleasantly surprised to learn she had placed in the top six in feature writing!
“I was on a tour of the UT campus when Mrs. Brand texted me the news,” Michel said. “I was about to jump up and down and scream.”
She hopes to return next year, and she and Mrs. Brand are very hopeful for the coming years.
“My favorite part of state was learning that [Michel] placed in the top six,” Mrs. Brand said. “I am very proud of her and [Garcia] for all their hard work!”