2024 Mass. High School Journalist of the Year Bella Ishanyan photographs a protest march (photo Ken Martin)

Bella Ishanyan Named Massachusetts High School Journalist of the Year


BOSTON (Maspa.org) — The Massachusetts Scholastic Press Association (MASPA) recognized 12 outstanding seniors as its 2024 All-State High School Journalism Staff on February 22, and also named Newton South senior Bella Ishanyan as the 2024 Massachusetts High School Journalist of the Year.

The 12 members of the All-State staff submitted portfolios of their work, resumes, and reflective essays as part of their applications, which were reviewed by a four-member judging panel — Journalism Education Association (JEA) Massachusetts director Brett Zinger, JEA New Hampshire director Tim Cain, JEA Connecticut director Dave Fortier, and Lian Parsons-Thomason, professional journalist and president of the Boston chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association.

The depth and breadth of Ishanyan’s writing, design, and leadership on her school paper, The Lion’s Roar, impressed judges, as well as her reporting for professional publications, MASPA Executive Director Brian Baron said.

Ishanyan now becomes the Massachusetts representative in JEA’s national High School Journalist of the Year Contest. JEA will name a national winner and runners up at its spring national convention in Kansas City in April, with scholarship money as prizes.

One of the professional publications Ishanyan has contributed to is the Armenian Mirror-Spectator.

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