There is no easy way to tell someone that they will not be able to finish their senior year. No email, phone call or social media post could break this news in a gentle way.
March 13 was one of the most chaotic days of my life. Every half hour, I received news that another school event was getting canceled due to COVID-19. I left school that day in shock, but I had not even heard the worst news. To receive a call telling me my senior year was over left me speechless.
As I reflect on my 13 years at Fresno Christian, it brings bittersweet emotions. Knowing I would not get a last formal, senior trip or a traditional graduation made me sad, but it also made me appreciate my times at Fresno Christian more.
I was first introduced to The Feather in eighth grade because my older brother, Nick LeBlanc, ’17, was a journalist and an editor. Even though my brother played a huge role on The Feather, enrolling in a journalism class during high school did not interest me.
During my junior year, all of my focus shifted toward college. I decided to challenge myself which led me to enroll in Greg Stobbe’s first period journalism class. Within a couple of weeks, I was publishing articles and began two new series on The Feather. Annabelle Messer, ’20, and I created “Girl Talk” to help high school girls going through tough times and give personal advice. Once we stopped “Girl Talk”, I began my own series entitled “Sports Records” to highlight student held records for six sports.
The following Instagram post talks about Messer and LeBlanc’s “Girl Talk” article about formal.
View this post on Instagram
With formal rapidly approaching, the voices behind “Girl Blog”, juniors Megan LeBlanc (bottom) and Annabelle Messer, test beauty hacks in their latest post, March 25. The duo test DIY beauty tricks to prepare for NOTS in a video vlog, ‘BLOG: Girl Talk- Preparation for formal’. DIY hacks and product review include face masks, hair masks, self tanner, teeth whitener and nail polish. Check it out and get ready! @fresnochristianschools #thefeather #fcNOTS #fcformal 📸pc: @juliajaelynphotography
As I headed into my senior year, I wanted to enhance my contributions toward The Feather team. Along with being a journalist, I decided I also wanted to learn photography. With the help of Kori James (Friesen), I was shooting big school events and presenting my photos to the public within a couple of weeks.
One of my favorite experiences The Feather provided me with was the opportunity to interview Jimmy Chin, the director and photographer for the Oscar winning movie, ‘Free Solo’. It was such an amazing experience to see how Chin began his career as a photographer and captured the life around him through the lens of his camera.
These past two years on The Feather has made such an impact on my high school experience. My junior and senior year would not have been the same without The Feather and my three advisers.
James, thank you for always believing in me and for never giving up on me. Whenever I was unsure about something or needed assistance, you always took me under your wing and helped me. Taking your photojournalism class was one of the best decisions I have made; I hope to use the skills you taught me in my future.
Stobbe, thank you for working with me and forcing me step out of my comfort zone. You were very patient with me when I messed up; you always pushed me to write my best articles. You also knew when I needed a little push to try something new and, you believed I could do anything. Thank you for seeing that potential in me and pushing me to be better.
Robert Hyatt, thank you for always making me laugh in The Feather lab and for putting a smile on my face. It still amazes me today that you can fix any technical error by just walking in the room but that just shows how great you are. The Feather would not be the same without you; I am so happy I had the opportunity to get closer to you.
During my two years on The Feather, this team has received a CSPA 2019 Digital News Silver Crown and a NSPA 2020 Online Pacemaker. I am sad to be leaving this team, but I am excited to see what they will accomplish in future years.
To anyone considering joining The Feather, do it! This team has helped me grow in my writing skills, photography and confidence. This team is special and the memories you make will be ones you will never forget. I am truly grateful for my time on The Feather and for all it has done for me.
After graduating Fresno Christian, LeBlanc will be attending Clovis Community College.
For more Feather photos, visit media, photos 2019-20
The following slideshow includes some of LeBlanc’s favorite photos she has taken during her year on photojournalism.
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