Erika Quick is JEA’s 2018 Distinguished Broadcast Adviser
The Journalism Education Association has awarded Erika Quick, CJE, Cody High School (Cody, Wyoming), as a Distinguished Broadcast Adviser recipient. Quick, who found a way to merge her love of broadcast with the outdoor life in Wyoming, has only been teaching broadcast for the past four years after taking over the program of her retired high school teacher.
However, in those four years, Quick has had a significant impact on the students she works with, scholastic journalism, and the community.
“Our program tends to be a huge resource for our community,” Quick said. “We are able to fundraise through community videos. I have had students film and edit the Mayor Message, create local advertisements, and work with media experts for businesses.”
Quick knows much of this is due to the tradition that had been established through her JEA mentor and former teacher, Michael Riley.
“I was fortunate to walk into a strong and established program. The program is considered a CTE program and extremely popular with students,” she said. “Students can take the course as many times as they like, and I even build specific independent classes for those who ‘top out’ of the offerings.”
The experiences Quick creates for her students is something she tries to extend to the younger students in her community to help build interest and teach them skills.
“This year, Erika convinced Cody’s Middle School principal to sponsor a teacher to attend the JEA/NSPA convention in San Francisco,” Riley said. “I introduced the teacher to a Mentor, and she will start a broadcast program this fall. Quick also worked with elementary aged kids teaching them photography, ‘Science Kids: Nature in Focus.’ She will display their photographs at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, which hosts over a million tourists a year.”
Quick is an idea machine when it comes to teaching broadcast and finding ways to make it accessible to as many people as possible. As the JEA Broadcast Write-off coordinator, she overhauled the submission process to help students easily submit their work through online links, updated the judging rubrics, and added categories JEA members were requesting, like Sports Feature.
She carries this same mentality into how she teaches her classes every day.
“I am always looking at new technologies or ways to improve the program,” she said. “But sometimes it isn’t necessarily having the newest gadget, piece of technology, or app. In Cody, we are lucky enough to have a studio, a lab and amazing equipment. However, sometimes the best gadget can be in their pocket, like a phone. I want to teach my students to be resourceful and to be problem solvers.”
The work she has done to teach her students this ability has paid off; the program and individual students have the accolades to prove it.
“She pushed me through my creative ruts, stayed after school with me on countless nights, and put hours of work into getting the school board to approve funding for an Adobe Certification course and testing,” former Wyoming Journalist of the Year Alicia Kain said. “My quality of work improved tremendously, for which I have Mrs. Quick’s work to thank. Her passion was always evident.”
Founded in 1924, JEA supports free and responsible scholastic journalism by providing resources and educational opportunities, by promoting professionalism, by encouraging and rewarding student excellence and teacher achievement, and by fostering an atmosphere which encompasses diversity yet builds unity. It is headquartered at Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas.