MAC to host open house Wednesday night

Carissa Tsui and Nathan Jiang

Students walk into the Media Arts Center, a building dedicated to educating students about media arts, including photography, video/audio production, journalism, and more. On Wednesday evening, Palo Alto High School will host an open house in the Media Arts Center to introduce students and parents to journalism and other CTE programs. According to journalism advisor Brian Wilson, the goal of this open house is to spark the interest of young students in journalism. “The goal is just to give people more information about the programs and hopefully get them to the point where they realize that it’s something that they also want to participate in when they’re in high school,” Wilson said. (Photo: Nathan Jiang)

In the Media Arts Center, an open house will be hosted from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday to introduce students and parents to the building, its programs, and Career Technical Education classes from across the school.

The event, which is a tradition from before the pandemic, will precede Palo Alto High School’s 8th Grade Parent Night, which was virtual last year. This will be the first time since before the pandemic that both will be hosted in-person together.

There will be building tours of the MAC for visitors so that they can become acquainted with its facilities. Representatives from Paly’s various journalism publications as well as other CTE programs will be present to talk with attendees.

According to journalism advisor Brian Wilson, the overall goal is to provide information and get incoming students excited.

“We [Paly journalism] are hoping that middle schoolers already are in the mode of ‘When I get to Paly, I want to take journalism, I want to be on a staff, I want to be part of that program,’” Wilson said.

Though primarily for parents, the MAC Open House is a great opportunity for anyone interested in journalism, according to journalism advisor Rodney Satterthwaite.

“It’s an open house so anyone can come,” Satterthwaite said. “Even [for] students who have joined a journalism program … there’s going to be opportunities … to hear about the other publications so I would definitely encourage students to come.”

Attendees do not necessarily have to be in the MAC the whole time.

“Usually groups… spend on average 15 to 20 minutes walking around and learning and listening but some people spend an hour,” Satterthwaite said. “Some people spend five minutes. They [parents] can block out as much or as little time as they want to.”

According to Satterthwaite, non-STEM classes are often less noticed than STEM classes in Paly due to the school’s focus on academics, and the journalism teachers hope that this event may make parents and future students pay more attention.

“This is a great chance to hear about all the other cool things that happen that parents might not know about,” Satterthwaite said.

Also, the Paly Child Development Pathway is offering childcare to parents with children ages 3-12 so that they can attend the 8th grade parent night. Childcare will take place in the Media Arts Center on the 2nd floor in Room MAC 201. There will be craft projects, toys, and games for the children to play with, and students from CDP along with an adult supervisor will be present.

Parents can use this form to register, but spots are limited and this form will close when there is no more space. If parents have any questions, they can contact Hilary McDaniel at [email protected] or check out the CDP website at