The 2013 First Amendment Symposium was held Wednesday, with many students and advisers in attendance. The weather did prevent some schools from attending due to the snow and ice, but in spite of the conditions, there was a good crowd. Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz presented opening remarks and stayed for the rest of the symposium. She also took pictures with award recipients and participated in group photos after the program.

The executive board led the proceedings and the IHSPA student board members (Claire Gallman, Mark Tague, Paige Woodard, Lauren Lecy, Brandon Vickrey, Ashley Shuler, Madi McNew) gave speeches near the beginning of the program to talk of the importance of each First Amendment Right.

Key note speaker Emily Jacobi spoke on Digital Democracy, the importance of First Amendment Rights, and how to always believe you can achieve your future goals.

“These are the fundamental freedoms that do allow other freedoms to take place…Because we can challenge what is wrong, and the things that prevent us from exercising those freedoms,” Jacobi said.

Awards were presented for students entered in the sports and first amendment contests. Student journalist of the Year was also announced–Micheala Sosby from Chesterton High School will move on to the national JEA competition. Both Sosby’s and runner-up Hannah Alani’s photos can be found below in the gallery along with a list of award recipients.

The Hoosier State Press Association awarded two scholarships also going to Sosby and Alani. These scholarships were given to students who represented ethical journalism in an effort for change.

It was announced that an Indy 500 “media day,” will be taking place again after the successful first program this past year. The winners of the sports contest will have the chance to participate.

A reception followed, serving cookies and punch for students, parents, and advisers. The executive board would like to thank all of those in attendance who helped made it another successful First Amendment Symposium.


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