A Promising Partnership for Reynolds

Tomas van Houtryve is an award-winning drone photographer and writer from Paris, who documents current events all around the world. Houtryve’s remarkable journalistic work has appeared in the New York Times, on CNN, MSNBC and other high profile platforms. Funded by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, he will be coming to Reynolds this November to kick off the five-year collaboration between RJ Reynolds High School and the Pulitzer Center.pulitzerinfographic

The Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting is a non-profit organization devoted to supporting journalism for underfunded and underrated global events, and a unique outreach program for schools and universities. Reynolds will be partnering with the Pulitzer Center and the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art (SECCA) to bring a new learning opportunity to RJR classrooms.

The Pulitzer Center usually just works with schools around the Washington D.C. area, but they are making an effort to begin expanding nationwide with schools like Reynolds. They have given our school a special opportunity that will make classes more interesting for all students, not just those in art classes.

English and history students will be taking field trips to SECCA to explore and compare the artwork in the exhibits to current events and what they are learning in their classes. Journalists like van Houtryve and others will also help bring a new learning program to RJR.

This program will break up the monotony of some classes for students and provide a more intriguing opportunity for experiential learning.

“It should make [classes] more interesting because it will give people a broader view of art, history and just kind of make them think more,” senior Brett Surmons explained.

Junior Janine Bryant had a similar point of view, but expanded on the current events aspect of the program.

“I think it’s pretty cool. It’s introducing students into problems around the world,” Bryant said.

All teachers at Reynolds have been informed of the new collaboration and are excited to see it come into action. AP  Psychology teacher Scottie House spoke very highly of the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting and the influence they will have in the classrooms.

“We are very lucky to have this collaboration,” House said. “I think it will be great for the students to know first hand about reporting and keep up to date with current events and it certainly will be something exciting that we can have here at Reynolds. I think it’s going to provide a lot of opportunities for students to go see first hand exactly what Pulitzer is doing.”

The next five years collaborating with the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting should be beneficial and engaging to students and teachers alike in the RJR community. With all the incredible tools and opportunities Pulitzer brings to the table, it will introduce students to a new way of learning and provide a very promising partnership for Reynolds.

Photo from Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting