EPIC News Network (ENN) is Oklahoma’s only statewide journalism program for high school students. Initiated in the fall of 2019, ENN is NOT public relations. ENN teaches students the principles of newsgathering, reporting, writing, editing, photojournalism, audio-visual production and ethics.
Content for ENN originates from ENN students’ own hometown news, their personal interests and their coverage of the state Capitol. Student instruction and students’ news stories, photographic essays, podcasts and more are overseen by ENN’s co-directors, M. Scott Carter and Phil Cross, both of whom are veteran, award-winning Oklahoma journalists.
Carter is an experienced Capitol reporter. He was most recently a journalism professor at Oklahoma City Community College and the faculty advisor to its award-winning student newspaper. Cross came to ENN from KOKH FOX 25 in Oklahoma City, winning an Emmy in 2017 for his government reporting. Both men are members of the Journalism Education Association and Oklahoma Scholastic Media, which has already awarded multiple first-place awards to ENN students.
ENN goes far beyond teaching the basics of journalism; it brings a level of professionalism and real-world experience to help students become better consumers of media and advocates of fact in a world where critical thinking of news has never been more important.
Only content passing a rigorous litmus test of fact checking, journalistic integrity, and sound judgement goes live. ENN students are charged to “be curious about the world around them and constantly be on a quest for the truth" and they are at ENN because they want to be.
In 2020, they also will weekly cover committee meetings at the state Capitol, provide state and national election coverage and focus on the issues important to their local communities and the content they create also will be offered to their local news outlets as free shared content.
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