Green Creek resident honored by University of Alabama

Published 10:45 am Monday, June 4, 2012

Mark Levin with Meredith Cummings, director of the Alabama Scholastic Press Association and journalism department faculty member. (photo submitted)

Mark Levin, former Carolina Day School (Asheville) fifth-grade teacher and current director of communications at Carolina Day School, was honored on Thursday, May 10 by the University of Alabama and the Alabama Scholastic Press Association for “his lifetime of service to scholastic journalism and for his exemplary leadership in founding the National Elementary Schools Press Association.”
Formed in 1994 by Mr. Levin at Carolina Day School, the National Elementary Schools Press Association (NESPA) works with elementary and middle schools across the country to start class and school newspapers and improve existing ones. According to Levin, the organization has more than 760 member schools nationwide. Levin has run the association single-handedly for the past 17 years.
Claudia Sherry, lower school principal at Carolina Day, said she remembers when Mr. Levin “came to me 19 years ago with the idea of starting ‘Carolina Kids’ News’ so that his fifth-grade students could write for a real audience. Then shortly after he got into the newspaper business, he came to me again to say that there was no organization in existence to support elementary school newspapers so he thought he should start one. NESPA was born shortly thereafter.”
Levin was recently in Tuscaloosa, Ala. to hand off the reins of NESPA to Meredith Cummings, director of the Alabama Scholastic Press Association in the University of Alabama journalism department. Levin will continue to serve as an adviser.
In addition to founding “Carolina Kids’ News” and NESPA, Levin is the author of four books dealing with publishing. “The Reporter’s Notebook,” his most utilized book, has been used by more than 30,000 student journalists across the world. Other books include “Real-World Publishing for Kids,” “Journalism, A Handbook for Journalists” and “Kids in Print, Publishing a School Newspaper.”
– article submitted by John Pfaff, Carolina Day School

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