Yenzer, 14, writes a local teen column

Student achiever

March 19, 2003

The student: Steven Yenzer, 14

School: Centennial High

Special achievement: Teen columnist for Ellicott City's local newspaper, The View. His column appears every other week.

Why write a teen column? He saw the kids page in The Washington Post, "but I didn't find it very entertaining for kids over 9 or 10. I just think if you're going to write a teen column, it should be written by a teen." He wrote a letter to The View asking if it would be interested in publishing a teen column. After an interview, he was hired. "There's not a lot for teen-agers to read in the newspaper right now, and I thought if they saw a column written by a teen-ager they would like it."

How he chooses his topics: "A lot of times, other people give me ideas. I just usually ask my peers, `What would you be interested in reading about?' " One of his favorites was "a column a while ago about weird Web sites. ... I got a lot of good comments about it. It was pretty funny. ... It's some stuff that's really off the wall." The strangest item "was a Web site about the phenomenon of losing a sock, and it was pretty detailed."

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