The Smoke Signal

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Cohen, Mullaney named editors in chief for 2019-2020 school year

Pascack+Valley+juniors+Rachel+Cohen+and+Katie+Mullaney+are+going+to+be+editors-in-chief+of+The+Smoke+Signal+for+the+2019-2020+school+year.+Editor-in-chief+Madison+Gallo+and+assistant+editor-in-chief+Kayla+Barry+will+be+graduating+at+the+end+of+this+year.
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Cohen, Mullaney named editors in chief for 2019-2020 school year

Pascack Valley juniors Rachel Cohen and Katie Mullaney are going to be editors-in-chief of The Smoke Signal for the 2019-2020 school year. Editor-in-chief Madison Gallo and assistant editor-in-chief Kayla Barry will be graduating at the end of this year.

Pascack Valley juniors Rachel Cohen and Katie Mullaney are going to be editors-in-chief of The Smoke Signal for the 2019-2020 school year. Editor-in-chief Madison Gallo and assistant editor-in-chief Kayla Barry will be graduating at the end of this year.

Molly Heintze

Pascack Valley juniors Rachel Cohen and Katie Mullaney are going to be editors-in-chief of The Smoke Signal for the 2019-2020 school year. Editor-in-chief Madison Gallo and assistant editor-in-chief Kayla Barry will be graduating at the end of this year.

Molly Heintze

Molly Heintze

Pascack Valley juniors Rachel Cohen and Katie Mullaney are going to be editors-in-chief of The Smoke Signal for the 2019-2020 school year. Editor-in-chief Madison Gallo and assistant editor-in-chief Kayla Barry will be graduating at the end of this year.

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Pascack Valley juniors Rachel Cohen and Katherine Mullaney will be editors in chief of The Smoke Signal for the 2019-2020 school year, the publication has announced.

“We are different people, but I feel like we work really well together,” Mullaney said. “I am excited to see what this will bring for both of us.”

We are different people, but I feel like we work really well together. I am excited to see what this will bring for both of us.”

— Katie Mullaney

As editors in chief, Cohen and Mullaney will lead editors meetings, coach staff editors, and oversee articles and print editions. Currently, PV senior Madison Gallo is editor in chief and senior Kayla Barry is assistant editor in chief of the publication.

“I think that they are going to complement each other really well because nobody is perfect but I think that their own skill sets are very complementary,” Gallo said. “They learn from each other and teach the staff as well.”

Bill Rawson, the adviser of The Smoke Signal for the past five years, said that Cohen and Mullaney “not only meet our expectations, but exceed them.”

“They are two of the most genuinely nice people you are going to be around — they’re kind, compassionate, empathetic,” Rawson said. “This helps them in their journalistic pursuits but also helps them when relating to staff members.”

They are two of the most genuinely nice people you are going to be around — they’re kind, compassionate, empathetic.”

— Bill Rawson

Mullaney and Cohen said that they find this experience very rewarding. After working hard on a story, they are both proud to hear feedback and see the article on The Smoke Signal website.

They said one of the biggest skills they have learned is communication. Through interviewing students and faculty, they are given the chance to speak to people they would not on a normal basis.

“I interviewed Kyra Gynergrowski [PV graduate class of 2018] for a piece last year,” Mullaney said, “And even though I only interviewed her once, I saw her recently and we had a whole conversation.”

Cohen said that “interviewing helps you branch out to other students who are not in your friend group.”

“People shouldn’t be scared to join,” Cohen said. “Sometimes interviewing can be really scary, but once you get into it, you find a passion for it. If you are planning on joining, yes, it is a lot of work, but it is worth it in the long run.”

Cohen and Mullaney are hoping to build up the program for the next school year and recruit more staff members.

“I want people to know that you can reach out to either [Cohen] or I whenever if you want to write something for us or have questions,” Mullaney said. “We are always welcoming and willing to talk.”

Photographer to editor

Mullaney started off as a photographer for The Smoke Signal during her freshman year but began writing articles after enrolling in the PV journalism class during her sophomore year.

“Last year, I was speaking with [Cohen] and Rawson and she asked me if I had ever thought about becoming an editor,” Mullaney said. “At that point, I never had but once she mentioned that to me, I realized that it was a goal of mine and I think that it really jump-started my career on The Smoke Signal. I am very grateful that she got me more involved and I hope to do the same for other people.”

After making The Smoke Signal a primary focus of her last school year, Mullaney was promoted to a staff editor position at the end of her sophomore year.

“She has learned so much in the last year plus and has really gone from zero to 60 in a quick amount of time,” Rawson said, “[Mullaney] has come to an extraordinary length from where she was just twelve months ago.”

When I say I work for The Smoke Signal, it is not just about writing. I am coming up with ways to present the information.”

— Katie Mullaney

In just over a year’s time, Mullaney has contributed 17 stories to The Smoke Signal, her first being “From “Grey’s Anatomy” to orthopedic internship” in December of 2017.

When Mullaney moved from Arizona in 2014, she believes that she became a more extroverted person from forming friendships with students at George G. White Middle School. She said that The Smoke Signal has made her even more open to meeting new people.

Mullaney said that one of her favorite things about working for The Smoke Signal is the creativity that is involved.

“When I say I work for The Smoke Signal, it is not just about writing,” Mullaney said. “I am coming up with ways to present the information, ways I can make an infographic, or how to pose people for a picture. There is so much creativity that goes into it and I like anything that is kind of artsy and fun.”

 

Since freshman year

Cohen said that she had always wanted to pursue journalism since she has a passion for writing.

“I used to watch the news with my parents, so I kind of knew what journalism was, but I had never written anything that was journalistic,” Cohen said. “I would write a lot of narrative pieces and poems. I had always wanted to pursue something different.”

During her freshman year, she decided to join The Smoke Signal and was promoted to her current position as staff editor at the end of that year. In December of 2016, Cohen wrote her first article for The Smoke Signal about the future of Valley Cup.

“I’m an introverted person,” Cohen said. “Freshman year, I didn’t talk to a lot of people, but since I joined, I became more open to speaking to other people.”

Cohen said that Sarah Schmoyer, a 2018 PV graduate and Cohen’s staff editor freshman year, had made her involved in writing articles.

I’m an introverted person. Freshman year, I didn’t talk to a lot of people, but since I joined, I became more open to speaking to other people.”

— Rachel Cohen

“[Schmoyer] had always believed in me and I wanted to make her proud,” Cohen said.

Cohen has contributed over 30 articles for the publication since her time being on the staff.

“This is the third solid year under her belt,” Rawson said. “She has a great foundation to build off of and has made great strides even just this year to now. She has improved leaps and bounds from where she was.”

Cohen said that The Smoke Signal has “sparked interest” for her to pursue journalism in the future.

“Journalism isn’t just writing,” Cohen said. “It’s interviewing, how you put the story on the site, pictures, infographics, and maps.”

 

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Cohen, Mullaney named editors in chief for 2019-2020 school year