Mississippi “Hatches” its Newest Journalist of the Year

Keith Henley, Staff Writer

On March 2, 2022, Pelahatchie High School’s very own newspaper staff member and chief-in-editor for all articles, Laura Renfroe, won the award for 2022 MS High School Journalist of the Year. 

Laura Renfroe is a senior student at Pelahatchie High School, and a member of the school’s newspaper, “Hatchie Headlines.” Renfroe joined the program in her freshman year, feeling a little nervous about the whole ordeal as she had never really done anything in journalism before. It didn’t take long for her, however, to grow to really enjoy it as she had previously been into creative writing. 

For the next three years inside the class, Renfroe went on to earn three “All-Mississippi recognitions” awards, improving on her crafting skills and creating better articles with each new story. Now as Mississippi’s newest journalist of the year, Renfroe will be advancing to the national level of the Journalism Education Association’s High School Journalist of the Year competition this spring of 2022. `

Laura Renfroe with her Journalist of the Year award (Pelahatchie High School; April 14, 2022)

Laura reflected on her accomplishment with a few inspiring words: “Journalism has truly shaped my high school journey, from connecting me to awe-inspiring people to reminding me, above all, to follow your heart’s passion. No matter what career field I go into, I am eternally grateful for the opportunities and memories journalism has granted me. This has been the most exhilarating adventure. I can’t wait to see how I continue to flourish in the future.”

On April 8, 2022, just a few weeks after her distinction, Laura alongside the Hatchie Headlines staff went out into their local town square to begin their fundraising event for the second semester. The team was greeted with tons of friendly faces and supportive people for the program, some even asking what MSPA was about. After a few hours, the team managed to raise well over $400! With the end of the school year coming to a close for most of these seniors, Hatchie Headlines plans to finish out strong with their final broadcast and articles and leave their trace on the program for the next bunch of future journalists.


Hatchie Headlines at fundraising event: Malik Latin, Caleb Walters, Keith Henley, Mrs. Laura Grice, Ryan Bayliss (Pelahatchie Town Square; April 8, 2022).