Journalism Week examines News that clicks
by Zanny Marsh
This year’s Journalism Week at the Reynolds School of Journalism, March 27-29, will feature a presentation by Sara Ganim, the Patriot-News reporter who broke the story about the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal and informal discussions with Wright Thompson, an award-winning writer for ESPN.
“News that clicks” will feature multiple presentations on journalism ethics, sports writing and visual communication. The Frank McCulloch Courage in Journalism Award also will be presented. All events are free and open to the public.
“This year we decided to focus on bringing in thoughtful and noteworthy journalists who are doing the heavy lifting in covering journalism that matters,” said Donica Mensing, Reynolds School acting dean. “We believe this year’s events will educate and inspire our students, friends and community in reminding us how journalism makes a difference in people’s lives.”
Journalism Week kicks off with presentations by Fred W. Smith Ethics Speakers Sara Ganim, Patriot-News reporter and Penn State alumnae, whose coverage of the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal earned a Polk Award on Feb. 20. Ganim, 24, will appear via videoconference.
Sacramento Press’ Ben Ilfeld, 30, will talk about the future of local news and how ethics and economics will shape the journalism career landscape. Ilfeld, co-founder and chief operating officer for the online newspaper, relies on the contributions of citizen journalists to generate content, localize stories and encourage community debate.
Also joining Journalism Week is Wright Thompson, senior writer for ESPN.com and The Magazine. The Mississippi native and University of Missouri grad has been featured in six editions of Best American Sports Writing and has written a series of essays about his Southern roots, family and the Birmingham hot dog.
Visual arts will be featured in two presentations on March 29.
The Reynolds School collaborates with the Reynolds Journalism Institute at the Missouri School of Journalism to present for the first time this year's winning images in Pictures of the Year International, the oldest and most prestigious photojournalism program in the world.
Rick Shaw, program director and assistant professor in the photojournalism sequence, teaches photo editing and management and serves as the director of photography for The Missourian, the student-produced daily city newspaper, will showcase winning images, which will have been announced only days before.
Journalism Week concludes with the second visual arts presentation by Barbara Davidson, Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist and staff photographer at the Los Angeles Times. Davidson will receive the Frank McCulloch Courage in Journalism Award in recognition of her extensive coverage of conflicts worldwide. Her images have captured the humanitarian crises in the wake of war in the Congo, Israel, Gaza and Bosnia and she has documented the tsunami disaster in 2004, Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and the Sichuan earthquake in China in 2008.
Reynolds School alumnus McCulloch, '41, who served as managing editor of the Times from 1960–1963, plans to attend the award ceremony and Davidson lecture.
Journalism Week concludes with Reno Collective’s Ignite Reno, a series of 5-minute “lighting presentations.”
“It's kind of like an open mic night for nerds. "We've taken back words like 'geek' and 'nerd' to define someone who's generally passionate about something that might seem weird or obscure in the 'regular' world,” said Robert Mills, a member of Reno Collective and freelance copywriter and 2011 interactive journalism graduate. “We use Ignite to showcase these interesting people in a way that engages, educates and entertains.”
“We see Journalism Week as much more than a line-up of outstanding speakers,” Mensing said. “The week expands what our students aspire to be and engages the Reynolds School of Journalism in a wide-ranging conversation about the future of journalism.”