The creative, dedicated, talented group of Cody High School’s news magazine program CHS Wired got some surprising yet welcome news recently, as they learned one of their shows has been nominated for the most prestigious award in the nation.
Episode 6: Season 23 of CHS Wired has been nominated for an Emmy award by the The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS).
Nominees were selected from high school student entries across the country in 25 programming and craft categories.
“It’s really a student-run program,” former media teacher and adviser Erika Quick said. “They edit, plan the shows, pick the air dates. Just being nominated for this award is a big deal.”
CHS Wired is a magazine program that typically runs on a biweekly schedule. It showcases news stories, features, sports and funny spoofs that focus on not just CHS, but other schools in the district, the Cody community and beyond.
“I went back and watched the show that got nominated and was like, ‘Wow, this a good show,’” coproducer Raelyn Mong said. “All of the stories were really strong. It was balanced with news features and spoofs. It was well produced and at the end of the trimester so everyone knew what they were doing at that point.”
The episode, anchored by Luke Talich and Hailee Hansen, explored a wide variety of news and topics spanning Cody and the region.
Eighth grader Elijah Cook is featured in an early story. After learning to play the piano, the middle schooler wrote a song that was making the rounds online.
February was the perfect time to have fun with Valentine’s Day as local elementary students were quizzed on a variety of the holiday’s topics, including the perfect Valentine’s Day gift. Spoiler alert: It’s chocolate.
The tone then shifted to some serious topics like streaming and Change Attitudes Now (CAN), a local drug prevention program.
Next, Madison Christler highlighted some of the Spring sports and some solid advice from the coach’s corner.
“There is a leadership team and not just an editor or a director,” Mong said. “There are producers who have to earn their spots, who have the experience, and then the new students who will do the stories around town and around the schools.”
The humor kept going in the program with a cake baking segment, then shifted to a feature on a Sam Gebhard, a sophomore last year who is an encyclopedia of truck knowledge.
After a story on the Bright Futures program, an afternoon program geared toward fifth graders entering middle school, the episode shifted gears and got back to what may be the heart of the program, the humor.
Justin Weigand, a junior last spring, got his second chance at Couch Time, a segment that features Weigand getting some one-on-one time with administrators who are put on the spot with some questions they might not expect.
“That was the second episode of Couch Time,” Weigand said. “I really just wanted to sit down with people and ask them philosophical questions. The first episode went really well, so I figured I would try it again.”
His segment - with questions about deja vu, the Mandela Effect, Darth Vader and the Monopoly Man - was a playful highlight for the Emmy nominated show.
“We kind of just love to create, love telling stories about the community and the school,” Weigand said. “The kids that do entertainment pieces love to make people laugh. It’s kind of like an art class -- we are just creating with a different spin.”
Senior producer Tashi Mathuin traveled to Billings for a feature on the Lighting of the Teepees on the rims overlooking the city.
In the grip of the COVID-19 pandemic, they served as beacons of hope and healing.
The episode finished with a little more humor from a pair of questionable “Cupids” and a blooper reel.
The episode was singled out from over 2,000 submissions. Winners will be announced later this month via web stream produced by NATAS.
“It was just a well put together show,” Mong said. “The audio was good, the editing was good, the anchors were good. There was no one story that was better than the other. They were all so good.”
For a look at the Emmy nominated episode, visit https://vimeo.com/manage/videos/511241402