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Home Featured Hun School student runs newspaper from China

Hun School student runs newspaper from China

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Hun School student runs newspaper from China
Kathy Wang, a fully-virtual student attending classes at The Hun School in Princeton, runs the school's newspaper and literary publication from China.
For most Hun School students, by 9 p.m their homework is complete and students are beginning to wind down for the night, but for Kathy Wang, Class of 2021, a fully-virtual student attending classes from Beijing, China, the school day is just beginning.
After dinner, Kathy logs on to Zoom to attend the first three class blocks and while her fellow classmates are eating lunch, she is tiptoeing around her kitchen looking for a midnight snack.
By 3 a.m., her school day is over and her extracurricular activities have just begun.

 

On top of taking a full course load, Kathy is the editor-in-chief of “The Mall,” the Princeton school’s newspaper, as well as “The Hun Review,” the school’s literary publication.

Throughout the last year, she has maintained both leadership positions despite operating eight hours ahead of her classmates at The Hun School. Kathy works tirelessly editing articles and communicating with staff writers for the two publications.

“I send all of my emails at three in the morning because for my peers, it’s late afternoon, so I feel like they are much more likely to see my emails then as opposed to me sending them during my day which is the middle of the night for them,” she said.

While “The Mall” has traditionally been a print publication, Kathy knew that while the school was operating virtually and she was in a different time zone, she had to come up with an alternative plan to reach her audience. With a little help, Kathy was able to revamp “The Mall’s” website and begin creating online issues.

“We used to print an issue every couple of months, but now since we post our publications on ‘The Mall’s’ website, we are able to work much faster and for the first time in a long time, we are on track to reach our goal of six publications a year. We’ve found that online publications are actually much more efficient and our readers love it more.”

Because Kathy is running the Hun School’s newspaper from the other side of the world, she notes that it is often a struggle to know exactly what’s happening on campus.

“A lot of the times, events at Hun are happening when I’m asleep, so I make it a priority of mine to stay on top of the school’s calendar, daily bulletin, and I follow all Hun-related Instagram accounts and check them regularly,” she said.

Throughout her time as a virtual student, Kathy has incorporated a new system for staff writers to follow so all club members can stay on task. Every few weeks, a Zoom meeting is scheduled for Kathy and her writers to brainstorm story ideas. Once Kathy has a good sense of what articles she wants to cover, she then sends out a detailed signup sheet where all participants can pick the articles they want to write and edit.

“If this experience has taught me anything, it’s taught me that I have to stay on top of all of my obligations and there is no room for procrastination,” she said. “Sending emails to my peers is the most time-consuming part of the whole process, but it’s the most crucial since it’s actually my only way to communicate with people who are on campus.”

Kathy notes while this year has been filled with many sleepless nights, she wouldn’t want it any other way.

“I believe this pandemic has made me a better person,” she said. “I never thought taking classes in the middle of the night and running a newspaper from China was something that I could do, but I had no choice when the time came, and I did it, and I’m a better person because of this experience.”

As Kathy prepares for graduation, she notes that the lessons she learned throughout this experience will stay with her long after high school. Next year, she will attend Brown University where she plans to study English and literary art. Kathy notes that participating in the Brown “Daily Herald” newspaper is a must for her.

And for the future of “The Mall,” Kathy hopes that future club members continue to create a balance between print and online issues.

“We learned that we can do it online, and when school goes back to operating normally, we can print issues too,” she said. “In the future, we can use the online issue as a way to keep community members informed on current events and print issues can be focused more on larger, more timeless pieces.”

  • This article was submitted by The Hun School of Princeton.