October 8, 2020

News, tips and advice from Quill and Scroll

The Lede

President Trump and COVID-19

Breaking down POTUS’ week-long saga as he battles Coronavirus

News broke last Thursday that President Trump and First Lady Melania had both tested positive for COVID-19. Since then, the media has been flooded with questions, concern and breaking news regarding Trump’s health. Here’s a breakdown of what has happened in the past week:

Wednesday, September 30:
  • Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel tests positive for COVID-19
Thursday, October 1:
  • 10:45 a.m. CT: Senator Mike Lee, who met with Supreme Court elect Amy Coney Barrett September 29, tests positive for COVID-19
  • Presidential aid Hope Hicks tests positive for COVID-19
  • 11:45 p.m. CT: President Trump announces via Twitter that he and First Lady Melania have tested positive for COVID-19
Friday, October 2:
  • President Trump’s campaign manager Bill Stepien tests positive for COVID-19
  • 7:45 a.m. CT: Joe Biden wishes President Trump and First Lady Melania a speedy recovery via Twitter
  • 11:30 a.m. CT: Joe Biden announces that he and Jill receive negative COVID-19 test results via Twitter
  • 5:30 p.m. CT: President Trump posts a 20 second video to the @reaDonaldTrump Twitter account announcing that he will go to Walter Reed Hospital
  • 6:15 p.m. CT: President Trump walks to his helicopter to leave for Walter Reed Hospital
  • 7:30 p.m. CT: Senator Thom Tillis, who met with Amy Coney Barrett September 29, tests positive for COVID-19
  • 9:15 p.m. CT: President Trump’s former counselor tests positive for COVID-19, along with daughter Claudia (who is currently trending on Twitter check out our feature on Claudia in ‘What’s Viral?’)
Saturday, October 3:
  • Senator Ron Johnson tests positive for COVID-19
  • 10:00 a.m. CT: Dr. Sean Corley and associates brief the press on President Trump’s condition, saying they were “extremely happy” with his progress
    • At the same press conference, White House official Mark Meadows commented that, “the president’s vitals over the last 24 hours were very concerning and the next 48 hours will be critical in terms of his care. We’re still not on a clear path to a full recovery.”

  • 10:30 a.m. CT: former New Jersey Governor and current advisor to President Trump Chris Christie receives a positive diagnosis (later checks himself into the hospital Sunday)
  • 11:00 a.m. CT: President Trump tweets that he feels well and compliments the medial professionals at Walter Reed
  • President Trump receives his first dose of dexamethasone, a steroid that is being tested in treating COVID-19 (information is not shared until Sunday’s press conference)
  • President Trump is on a five-day dose of remdesivir
Sunday, October 4:
  • 10:00 a.m. CT: Dr. Conley and associates brief the press regarding President Trump’s condition, stating, “President Trump is doing really well”
    • In response to the comment made by White House official Mark Meadows, Dr. Conley states he was trying to “reflect the upbeat attitude of the patient”
  • 4:15 p.m. CT: President Trump announces surprise visit to well-wishers outside of Walter Reed Hospital over Twitter
  • President Trump is then shortly seen in a large black SUV – part of a 10 car motorcade – waving to supporters outside of Walter Reed. Trump is pictured wearing a cloth mask.

  • Sunday night: press secretary Kayleigh McEnany tells reporters President Trump’s first positive COVID-19 test came after he returned to the White House from a visit to Bedminster, NJ on Thursday
Monday, October 5:
  • 10:30 a.m. CT: Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany tweets that she has tested positive for COVID-19
  • 12:30 p.m. CT: President Trump tweets that he will be released from Walter Reed Hospital at 5:30 p.m. CT with a message to, “not be afraid of Covid”
    • Dr. Conley confirms this information in a press conference
  • 5:30 p.m. CT: President Trump is seen walking out of Walter Reed to return to the White House in his helicopter, where he will continue to be treated for COVID-19
  • 6:30 p.m. CT: President Trump returns to White House

Tuesday, October 6:

Developments regarding the President’s health and the health of those who surround him continue to progress.

Free workshops

Northwestern Communications offers free October programming for high school journalists and parents

Throughout October the Medill School of Journalism, Media and Integrated Marketing Communications at Northwestern University is offering free high school student and advisor programming related to journalism production, called “High School Journalism Live.” This is the first year the program is being held.

Unlike other programs, “High School Journalism Live” tools are available to parents, too. The program is aimed at offering applicable tools to high school journalism students and advisors, but also giving interested parties a front row look at a professional career in journalism. The program includes both workshops and panel discussions led by Medill faculty and students over Zoom.

Here are the programs you can still register for:

For more information regarding “High School Journalism Live” and Medill, make sure to check out their website.

It’s An Honor

Q&S Fall Deadlines

Yearbook Contest – ONE WEEK left to submit!

The Yearbook Excellence Contest deadline is Oct. 17 for all 2020 books. Students may enter their work in 18 categories, and all individual entries are $5. Theme Development entries are $10. There’s no limit on the number of individual entries a school may complete. Each school is limited to one Theme Development entry.

With just one day left to submit to the Yearbook Excellence Contest, make sure your students’ work is represented.

Competition is divided by school size, with Class A consisting of schools with 750 students or more, and Class B consisting of schools with 749 students or fewer. Begin your entry process here.

Ten schools named George H. Gallup Award winners

Named for the founder of Quill and Scroll and the Gallup Poll, the award is given only to those publications that achieved and sustained excellence during the 2019-2020 academic year.

Gallup Award recognition is based on extraordinary improvement, exceptional service to the school and community, editorial campaigns, and in-depth reporting on special issues.

International First Place Award recognition went to 18 schools. The International Second Place Award was awarded to nine schools. Click here for a full list of winners. 

The Gallup Award winners include:

  • Felix Varela Senior High School, “The Viper Vibe”
  • Clarke Central high School, “Odyssey News Magazine”
  • Shawnee Mission Northwest High School, “The NW Passage”
  • Francis Howell North High School, “North Star”
  • Nixa High School, “Wingspan”
  • Green Valley High School, “The InvestiGator”
  • Southwest CTA, “Southwest Shadow”
  • Lakota East High School, “Spark”
  • Harrisonburg High School, “Newstreak”
  • McLean High School, “The Highlander News”

It’s never too late (or early!) to honor seniors and induct members

If you put off your spring celebrations, you can still induct new Quill and Scroll members and honor seniors this fall. We’re able to take and fulfill orders, even as Quill and Scroll staff work from both our home offices and our offices at the Adler Journalism Building on the University of Iowa campus.

We published this update earlier in August. It includes a simplified order form for schools and advisers willing to pay via credit card, and an offer to host an online induction ceremony for your students. The sooner you induct new members, the sooner they’ll be able start planning chapter activities in the spirit of Quill and Scroll. Here’s a link to a PDF file of the Q&S Chapter Handbook if you don’t already have it.

A reminder about cords:

Students MUST HAVE BEEN OR WILL BE INDUCTED into the Society to earn the honor to wear an Honor Cord (GHC) or Honor Cord with Insignia (GCI). If you order cords for non-members, please choose the Non-Member Cord Option (NCD). Quill and Scroll exists because of the special unifying bond brought about by membership and the lasting legacy of the induction ceremony.

And, as always, feel free to email [email protected] if you have any questions.

Covering the political divide

‘The Number One Lesson in Covering Politics’

In the latest episode of THE SOURCE, Quill and Scroll’s podcast, Lyle Muller, the former editor of the Cedar Rapids Gazette and the editor for PolitiFact Iowa, discusses Tuesday’s presidential debate, how high school journalists can better cover politics, and the keys to earning a top place in Quill and Scroll’s annual Writing, Photo and Multimedia Contests political writing category. He also reveals “the number one lessons in covering politics” as a high school journalist. This is a timely and important podcast for any high school journalist who’s committed to writing about politics. Enjoy.

What’s Viral?

Tennessee accidentally puts COVID-19 testing materials up for auction

Officials list supplies on government liquidation site

Tennessee officials accidentally listed 13 pallets of COVID-19 testing swabs for auction after mistakenly labeling the pallets as surplus supplies last week. The Tennessean approached officials regarding the listing of materials on, a government surplus auction site. Officials removed the listing Thursday after receiving a singular bid of $150.

Have you ever heard of Well, let me introduce you to the site that sells surplus assets for local and state governments. A liquidity services site, provides a hub for states to list surplus materials that they no longer need in auction format. Each item has a starting bid and auction expiration date. has pretty much any item you may need. How about a new luggage set? currently has 14 different bags listed. Motorcycles? has 12.

Kellyanne and Claudia Conway

Two generations clash politically, gain social media attention

Kellyanne Conway served as President Trump’s campaign manager during the 2016 election cycle, and then moved on to serve as one of his counselors until the end of August 2020. Most circles are aware of Conway; her position in the media as one of President Trump’s closest advisors led to an abundance of media coverage. When she announced that she would be stepping down from her position – and transitioning away from the White House – in August, Conway cited family reasons as her grounds for her departure.

George Conway III, K. Conway’s husband, also left his position as part of the Lincoln Project at the same time, stating similar reasons via Twitter. G. Conway is a known critic of President Trump.

So, how does this relate to teenagers? Simple – Claudia Conway, 15-year-old daughter of K. and G. Conway has become a widely recognized figure throughout social media for her consistent criticism of President Trump, discussions of her mother’s position within the White House and its affect on their family and discussion of the impact political dispute throughout her household has had on her mental health. C. Conway’s has over 1.3 million followers on TikTok and 580 thousand followers on Twitter – including the application’s CEO.

C. Conway, who was trending on Twitter earlier this week, has been called the “whistleblower” of Generation Z. A frequent TikTok user, C. Conway consistently posts videos speaking against President Trump and her mother’s actions with him. However, others argue that C. Conway’s social media usage should not be viewed as a political spokesperson for teenagers, but rather as an inside look at the teen’s family troubles.

C. Conway expressed frustration for her rising status on social media via TikTok. Her presence in popular media is a combination of her mother’s status within the White House and her blatant disapproval of her mother and father’s political views. You may continue to hear C. Conway’s name throughout the news because of her believed “inside look” at President Trump’s politics. However, C. Conway makes it known that the information present on her social media accounts are her own opinions.

i keep having to repost it because tiktok keeps adding weird sounds

♬ original sound – ThatVeganTeacher

No matter how you view C. Conway, there are a few things we can learn from her as an active contributor to political discussions:

  1. No matter what age, you can be a participant in political discussions. You can contribute your ideas and beliefs and you can educate yourself on the policies of all political parties.
  2. Your social media accounts can serve as platforms and as a way to express yourself. However, be aware of the way your content may be interpreted.
  3. Social media is a source of support and criticism, which makes knowing what is appropriate to post hard.

Nobel Prize makes female history in 2020

Two women are awarded the Nobel prize for Chemistry without a man

Since the creation of the Nobel Prize in 1901, the award has only been given to women 23 times in medicine, physics or chemistry: the three categories attributed to science. In comparison, prizes have been given 599 times to men in the same categories.

This year was historic for a few reasons: first, this is the only time in history that two women have been awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry without a man also receiving the award; and second, this is only the second time that two women have been given the award in the same year – this was first done in 2009.

The chemistry prize was given to Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna for their work developing the CRISPR method of genome editing.

Just A Thought

Pretty fly for a debate guy

Insect creates buzz around vice presidential debate

He was trying to make a point about the Trump-Pence tickets support for law enforcement officers, but the audience during Wednesday’s vice presidential debate just couldn’t get past that small, black spot on Vice President Mike Pence’s head.

“What the … what!?!? Is that a fly?!?!”

Here’s the two-minute segment that caused such a buzz:

Soon after, a Twitter account called @MikePencesFly garnered 70 followers. More serious social media reported how much the fly perked up an otherwise tame discussion of the issues facing the U.S.

Republican political commentator David Frum, a speechwriter for former President George W. Bush, called the fly on Pence’s head the perfect analogy for the past four years in his commentary for the Atlantic magazine.