2012 Stars High School Media Day A Success

High School Media Day Video
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When you were in high school did you know exactly what you wanted to do when you graduated? Most people don’t but the 60 high school students who attended the Dallas Stars High School Media Day on Monday believe they do. All are aspiring broadcast or journalism students and desire to cover the biggest sports stories of tomorrow.  High School Media day is an annual event created by the Dallas Stars Foundation in their ongoing quest to provide support and educational opportunities for children in the Dallas community.  

What better way to start than by covering a Dallas Stars practice? Students from all over the DFW area came to the Dr Pepper Arena in Frisco to watch practice, followed by a “mock” press conference with select Dallas Stars players and media professionals. 

Featured panelists at the annual media day included Fox Sports Southwest anchor John Rhadigan, TXA21/CBS11 anchor Gina Miller, ESPN blogger Mark Stepneski and Dallas Stars play-by-play analyst Ralph Strangis.  Each panel member shared their journey of how they got to where they are today and gave great advice to the students. Students were able to ask questions and pick the brains of the professionals in front of them.  “I was very impressed by their preparation and intelligent questions,” said Strangis, who also served as the Emcee for the event. “It was a terrific experience.”

Dallas Stars forwards Eric Nystrom, Michael Ryder and Mike Ribeiro joined the panel after practice and team meetings.  They fielded questions from the students, covering topics such as the upcoming All-Star game, current injury struggles and their favorite career moment.

“It’s always good to take some time to talk with young people who have an interest in a career in sports,” said Nystrom. “We work with the media everyday and some of these kids will be the sportswriters of tomorrow. It was fun to talk with them.”

Each student who attended High School Media Day was encouraged to participate in a contest, showcasing what they learned from the day’s events. They can choose to write an article or produce a two-minute video recapping their day at the Dallas Stars High School Media Day. The winning video and article are posted below:

These Stars shine bright

by Dani Sureck

Being a devoted fan for over 13 years, it was hard to imagine the day becoming any greater as I saw my favorite professional athletes take the ice. At the press conference, play-by-play announcer Ralph Strangis, FOX Sports Southwest anchor John Rhadigan, CBS 11/TXA 21 sports anchor Gina Miller and ESPN Dallas writer/blogger Mark Stepneski delivered influential advice to a room full of promising journalists on the industry.

The team had just finished a morning practice, preparing to face the Anaheim Ducks the following night. As the players warmed up to Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep,” the teammates joked around and continued working through their passing drills. As the music shifted to rap, the energy began exploding off the ice as pucks were flying into nets and bouncing off the plexiglass. The camaraderie between the players was apparent during a shoot-out practice as they cheered on their teammates and laughed about missed shots.

After practice, journalists moved on to the press conference, which began with Strangis. After a brief introduction of each person who would be talking at the conference, he began his story about the journey of his career.

“Nobody had to tell me to get excited,” Strangis said. “Find whatever it is you’re excited about and pursue that. I had a sense of direction and as a kid I would take my tape recorder out to football and baseball games and sit in the stands and practice. How good are you at something you don’t do every day? Nothing is hard to do; but everything is hard to do well.”

Strangis stressed the importance of doing homework for a job. He encouraged students to look for opportunities and seize them. Strangis discussed his previous jobs, ranging from announcing women’s volleyball to men’s wrestling, warning journalists that sometimes the best way to get ahead is to work for free.

“If you’re not worried about the job you have, then you won’t get anywhere,” Strangis said. “If you’re good at what you do, people will notice you and that’s how you can move up.”

Perhaps the reason Strangis and the other speakers were so effective was because they did not sit there and glorify the industry. Each one of them used specific anecdotes to stress the intensity of being any type of journalist today. To journalists not serious about a future in this industry, it may have come off as slap in the face. But to those prepared to fight through every obstacle thrown in the way, it was only words of motivation.

After hearing from the other speakers and their personal stories, forward Michael Ryder, forward Eric Nystrom and forward Mike Ribeiro joined the conference. The players were eager to answer the questions prepared for them. They talked about strengths as a team and weaknesses that needed tweaking to help them move up in the Western Conference. They talked about superstitions, such as always putting the right skate on first or eating the same game day meal, and they also discussed the passion and drive it takes to accomplish a goal or a dream.

“If you truly believe you are willing to sacrifice anything for that goal, as long as you work as hard as you possibly can and you can accomplish that goal, all is good,” Nystrom said. “If you just have a positive mindset and you push yourself, nothing bad can come of it. You just have to believe in yourself.”

If you have any questions regarding the Stick with Reading program, please contact Christa Melia at (214) 387-5527 or via email at cmelia@dallasstars.com.


The Dallas Stars Foundation was established to serve as a positive force throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.  

The Foundation focuses its efforts on providing support to the children of the community so they may lead quality lives and develop into contributing members of society.

Through teamwork, interaction, and education, the Dallas Stars Foundation works to bring together all members of the Metroplex and build a bright future for today’s youth.

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