A little over a year ago, a small group of tech journalists decided to launch their own news outlet, Gateway High School, to help them get a foot in the door of the industry.
“We’re a little bit different than what we had,” one of the journalists told Polygon, describing the publication’s mission as to “help journalists do their jobs.”
The journalists were in their first year of journalism school at Gateway High School in South Jersey, the same school that hosts the World Championship of Wrestling, the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, and the United States Open of Chess.
For the most part, the school is a quiet place for its students to be.
For those who have made it in journalism, though, the news outlet has been a big step in the right direction.
The team is also hoping to open their own YouTube channel, Gateways Tech, to provide more content to the platform.
The outlet is currently only available in the US and Canada, but plans to expand the service as the season unfolds.
The website is currently live, and includes a variety of content, including a feature-length documentary called “Inside Gateways High School.”
The team hopes to eventually launch a podcast and more on the platform, which is currently being funded via Indiegogo.
There are already a few episodes of the show available online, and one of them features the news organization’s first-ever live chat with an alum.
As the story goes, the host was a former high school wrestler who was kicked off the team in 2016.
In addition to helping his former teammates transition into journalism, the hosts also gave him a chance to connect with other athletes in the high school’s wrestling program, which was the same program that hosted the 2014 NCAA Championships.
“It was a chance for him to see the school as a whole, as a place that’s a part of a broader community,” one former wrestler told Polygon, adding that the host is “kind of a nerd for life.”
In his own way, the former wrestler said, the team is a lot like his own high school.
He credits the outlet for getting him into journalism and helping him feel comfortable in the field.
“When you’re the kid at your high school and you’re in wrestling, you’re pretty isolated, and you don’t really see other people around you,” he said.
“So I think that when we were able to get our journalism program online, we kind of took it to the next level.”
The former wrestler also noted that the outlet is not just a place for the athletes to connect.
“If we do a show with the guys who are wrestlers at the school, we would definitely do a podcast with them,” he added.
“But we also want to help out with any other sports we’re interested in covering, too.”
The outlet’s website is not currently live in the United Kingdom, but the team has started receiving inquiries from reporters in the country.
It’s unclear when the team plans to make the site available in other countries.
For now, the website offers up a number of links to news articles, videos, and interviews, but nothing that would lead one to actually buy a subscription.
While the site does not include an option to subscribe, the reporters at Gateways hope that as the school’s season goes on, the channel will continue to be the best place for them to connect and learn.
“There’s always something to be said about being a geek and having an outlet for your geekiness, even if you’re not going to be writing for a major publication,” said the former wrestling wrestler.
“Being able to connect on social media and find the right people, whether that’s through Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, or YouTube, is always a plus.”
Gateways is still in its infancy, but they hope to soon become a viable alternative to mainstream news outlets, and they hope the channel can provide a platform for aspiring journalists to get noticed and gain exposure.
“Hopefully, as the seasons go on, and we start getting more students coming into journalism school, and it starts becoming more mainstream, then we can start looking at making Gateways a more viable option,” said one of Gateways founders.
“And we hope that someday, we can open up Gateways to other journalists and help them become journalists themselves.”
The first episode of the podcast will air on Friday, November 10, with the rest of the content to follow in the coming months.
In the meantime, Gatewoods Tech hopes to make its debut on Friday when the channel launches.
“This is the first thing we’ve ever put out, and people are really excited about it,” said host and former wrestler, Aaron Williams.
“The idea is to give a little piece of our lives to these kids and let them see the world through their eyes, and hopefully, we could do something positive for them.”
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