From creating her own newspapers at a young age to earning the title of editor in chief at Sacred Heart Academy’s school newspaper, Abigail Kelly has now been selected as one of 12 students from across the country to report on the 2016 presidential election.
Kelly was selected as one of 12 winners of the Chase the Race initiative, which was designed to “empower students to play an active role, engage with and better understand the electoral process in the run-up to the inauguration of the 45th president of the United States and Envision’s 2017 Presidential Inauguration Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C.”
The students chosen to be reporters for the upcoming election were assigned an event to cover. Kelly was assigned “Super Tuesday” along with another out-of-state winner.
Super Tuesday is one of the most influential days in the presidential election year, as the greatest number of states hold primary elections on that day. According to the initiative’s website, “More delegates can be won on Super Tuesday than on any other single day of the primary calendar, so candidates seeking the presidency traditionally must do well on this day to secure their party’s nomination.”
In preparation for the event, Kelly will be polling her peers and classmates to gauge what social issues are most important. From the information she gathers, she will begin to formulate questions and follow-up questions for all of the candidates, given that she won’t know whom she will be interviewing until the event on March 1.
Kelly will do a live poll with voters at the event to find out why they are supporting their candidate.
The other events receiving coverage from the young reporters include the Iowa caucus, the Republican and Democratic debates, and both the Democratic and Republican National Conventions.
Kelly and the other students will serve as “correspondent reporters,” with one goal during each interview: Get a good, honest, interesting story. Some interviews will be taped and some will be live, but they will all be streamed online.
Live streamed coverage from Chase the Race 2016 reporters will be broadcast online at http://www.chasetherace2016.com/live-events/ and will include their interviews with candidates, voters, and political experts.
Kelly said she is a bit nervous about the upcoming experience just because she has never done anything like it before, but she is also very excited.
“It’s exciting to think that I could actually end up interviewing the next president of the United States,” said Kelly. “I am going in with confidence and knowing that I will be learning as I go.”
With a future in journalism in mind, Kelly said she is looking forward to getting experience out in the field and using professional equipment.
“It’s very exciting to hear we’re going to be doing video because I’ve never done that before, but I’m honestly more excited about the opportunity as a whole,” said Kelly.