Powerful Nor-Easter Disrupts North Texas Students’ Plans

The winter storm plowing through the northeast this week is affecting about 200 high school students from North Texas who are set to attend the Columbia Scholastic Press Association Spring Convention in New York City.

“It’s kind of heartbreaking," said Brady Powers, a student at Prosper High School.

Powers is among 24 students there hoping to attend the journalism conference.

Their early morning flight Tuesday has been canceled because of the winter storm.

“I was, of course, shocked," said Kaitlyn Wessels, another Prosper High School student planning to attend. “I was, like, 'oh no, what’s going to happen? Are we going to be there the full week? And of course, I was heartbroken."

The flight cancellation sent their teachers scrambling Monday morning.

“What do we do? How do we change the flight, the hotels? We’ve already paid for the trip, so now what to we do?” said Brian Kennedy, the broadcast journalism teacher at Prosper High School.

“This is the 25th time I’ve taken kids on this trip, and I’ve never been delayed because of weather," said another Prosper High School teacher Lori Oglesbee. "So I guess it has to happen sometime sooner or later."

They managed to re-book seats on Southwest Airlines for Wednesday morning. That's when the airlines expect to resume normal operations after the storm passes.

“I have faith we’re going to get in. I know it, I know it,” Oglesbee said.

Still, the students and teachers will miss the first day of the conference, after each spent about $1,300 for their flight, hotel rooms and conference fee.

“I’m excited," said another student Tich Cama. "So, if we are still are able to get there, then it’s going to be a really good trip and I know even if we’re there for a day or two, it’s still going to be a fun trip. But, I don’t know. It’s kind of disappointing."

In addition to the conference, the Prosper High School students have plans to attend Wednesday’s taping of "Late Night with Seth Meyers" on NBC.

“I’m sure we’ll have the same experience, even if it’s cut [by] a day,” said Wessels.

More than a dozen schools in North Texas are sending students to the annual conference.

NBC 5's Courtney Gilmore contributed to this report.

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