#SJW2021: Security in social media


Tracy Tran

The Sidekick social media manager Blanche Harris manages posting content on Instagram and Twitter. For Scholastic Journalism Week, Harris shows how her love of journalism merges with social media.

Blanche Harris, Social Media Manager

Junior year. Here we go. My fifth period class is Sidekick, the school newspaper. Am I going to like it? What would I even do on a newspaper?

I went into my journalism class having no idea what to do. I didn’t think I had what it takes to be a staff member on a newspaper. When I walked into class, I picked up a camera, thinking it would be easy to learn.

Suddenly, I was a photographer. Darting from event to event, writing cutlines and snapping shots, I was in love with photojournalism. I dabbled in other fields as well. I wrote some stories, designed graphics and made videos. 

After a year in The Sidekick, it had become my life. Almost all my free time was spent attending meetings, covering sports games and interviewing sources for various features. I knew that I needed to stay in the program next year, but there was something more I could do.

So, I applied for a leadership position. Looking through the application, I was set on being the entertainment editor, but I needed a backup: social media. 

But no worries, right? I would get the entertainment position.

Blanche Harris – social media manager. 

I couldn’t believe it. I was so sure I would get the entertainment position. What did I know about social media? I was convinced that I would fail at this position. I was not the right person for this job.

As the weeks passed, I started to get a feel for my new job. Posting all the stories, updating our audience and promoting our work, I started to get the hang of it. I was finding new ways to expand our reach and brand.

I was getting compliments for my work on the social media accounts. People were asking me how I made that graphic or came up with the idea to post the story like that. When college applications asked me to declare my major, I knew just what to put: I was going to major in communications with an emphasis in journalism.

Update: you have a notification from Brigham Young University. Rise and Shout Blanche! You have been accepted into BYU. 

Senior year. Here we go. Majoring in communications. Taking my student journalism from high school to college. 

Follow Blanche (@blanchegang) and @CHSCampusNews on Twitter.