A free and independent press is essential for providing information to citizens about their governments and holding power accountable. As the U.S. journalism industry weathers economic hardship and reporters worldwide face political and cultural threats, educational opportunities pursued by the next generation of journalists becomes increasingly important. The Poynter Institute meets that opportunity with its College Media Project.
Poynter describes the College Media Project as “a free, yearlong initiative that provides participants with custom in-newsroom training, regular online seminars, and support for a reporting project” that provides college student media organizations with:
- $1,500 to spend on a reporting project or event that advances civil discourse on your campus.
- In-person, Poynter-led workshops focused on accountability reporting, editing, and storytelling for its entire staff.
- Exclusive admission to a series of online training events throughout the academic year where college student organizations hear from professionals, as well as from the other campuses about their experiences and projects.
- Training on the best techniques for watchdog reporting that holds the powerful accountable and establishes the campus media as a fair and trusted advocate for students.
- Insights into the tools of dialogue that model the search for mutual understanding and tolerance through reporting projects and real-life events.
Poynter announced that ten college journalism programs have been selected for the upcoming 2020-2021 school year.
“I’m proud to lead the expansion of the College Media Project during this crucial moment for college campuses. Many don’t know when or if they will reopen in the fall, creating an immense challenge for student editors new to their leadership role and student reporters learning on the job,” said Barbara Allen, Poynter’s new director of college programming. “My hope is to help students use this crisis as an opportunity to approach reporting and engagement in new and creative ways.”
“As universities transitioned online during the pandemic, many student papers continued reporting on stories important to them and their campuses—reinforcing the important role student journalists play in serving their communities while refining their skills,” said Charles Koch Institute’s Director of Free Expression Sarah Ruger. “Poynter’s program equips the next generations of journalists to meet challenging moments like this.”
The ten programs include:
- Colorado State University — The Rocky Mountain Collegian (Fort Collins, Colorado)
- Duquesne University — The Duquesne Duke (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania)
- Hillsborough Community College/Ybor City — The HawkEye (Tampa, Florida)
- Johns Hopkins University — The Johns Hopkins News-Letter (Baltimore)
- Morgan State University — The MSU Spokesman (Baltimore)
- Texas State University — The University Star (San Marcos, Texas)
- University of Kansas —The University Daily Kansan (Lawrence, Kansas)
- University of Richmond — The Collegian (Richmond, Virginia)
- University of South Florida at St. Petersburg — The Crow’s Nest (St. Petersburg, Florida)
- University of Southern California — Annenberg Media Center (Los Angeles)