Press Releases and other news about Poynter

Poynter’s NewsU and Knight Program in Media and Religion Offer New E-Learning Course

St. Petersburg, FL (Oct. 7, 2010) — Poynter’s e-learning project, News University, and the Knight Program in Media and Religion at the University of Southern California Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism, announced today the launch of a new e-learning course on religion coverage designed for general assignment reporters, independent journalists and others who do not primarily cover religion as a beat.

The course, “Religion, Culture and Society: Getting Beyond the Cliches,” is offered free of charge, thanks to a grant from the Ford Foundation. The e-learning module addresses the need to integrate informed and intelligent writing about religion into all areas of news coverage, as demonstrated by recent hot-button topics such as Glenn Beck and the growth of the Tea Party movement, revisions to the social studies curriculum in Texas public schools, the debate over Park51 and renewed tensions around Israeli settlements in the West Bank.

As specialty beats such as religion are cut back in mainstream news media — and as online news and opinion websites grow — there is an increased need for savvy and sensitive treatment of religious ideas, trends and personalities by journalists across the board.

In addition to editors, producers and reporters, the self-directed e-learning course also will serve journalism educators seeking to integrate modules about religion into reporting and writing classes. The course includes interactive learning, best practices and online resources. It specifically addresses the intersection of religion with such subjects as politics, science, the environment and foreign affairs.

The need for enhanced understanding of religion’s role has never been greater, said Diane Winston, Knight Chair in Media and Religion at the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism. “The recent Pew Forum survey revealed that Americans’ religious knowledge is poor to middling,” Winston said. “The e-course is an effective way for reporters to enhance what they know and make an impact on listeners, viewers and readers.”

Howard Finberg, director of interactive learning at The Poynter Institute, said the course is an important addition to the curriculum of Poynter’s NewsU. “It’s imperative that all journalists and journalism students know something about religion in today’s world,” he said. “This course addresses a key need for continuing education.”

For more information, go to www.newsu.org/courses/religion-culture-society
 
About Poynter’s News University
Poynter’s News University (www.newsu.org) offers training to journalists, journalism students, teachers and the public through more than 150 interactive e-learning modules and links to other journalism education and training opportunities.

About The Poynter Institute
The Poynter Institute trains journalism practitioners, media leaders, educators and citizens in the areas of online and multimedia, leadership and management, reporting, writing and editing, TV and radio, ethics and diversity, journalism education and visual journalism. Poynter’s website, (www.poynter.org) is the dominant provider of journalism news, with a focus on business analysis and the opportunities and implications of technology.

About the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism
Located in Los Angeles at the University of Southern California, the Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism is a national leader in education and scholarship in the fields of communication, journalism, public diplomacy and public relations. With an enrollment of more than 2,200 students, USC Annenberg offers doctoral, graduate and undergraduate degree programs, as well as continuing development programs for working professionals, across a broad scope of academic inquiry. The school’s comprehensive curriculum emphasizes the core skills of leadership, innovation, service and entrepreneurship and draws upon the resources of a networked university located in the media capital of the world.

Contact:
Howard Finberg, Director of Interactive Learning
The Poynter Institute
727-821-9494
hfinberg@poynter.org

Diane Winston
Knight Chair in Media and Religion
USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism
323-336-1851
dianewin@usc.edu

Read more

Tools:
0 Comments

Poynter to Assist McCormick Foundation with Specialized Reporting Institutes

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The McCormick Foundation has selected Poynter to administer its 2011 Specialized Reporting Institutes (SRI) program, the popular series of intensive journalism workshops designed to provide subject-specific expertise and practical skills to working journalists. 

McCormick looks to Poynter to share its 35 years of training experience to increase the impact, effectiveness and visibility of the events. The $340,000 grant will cover Poynter’s costs and fund six to eight SRIs next year, one of which will be hosted by Poynter.

“The Institute’s experience, reach and resources, including our e-learning site, News University, enable us to enrich these important on-the-ground events,” said Poynter President Karen B. Dunlap. “We look forward to working with McCormick and next year’s SRI program hosts to help journalists cover stories that serve democracy.”

Clark Bell, the foundation’s journalism program director, said Poynter is the perfect choice to manage the SRI series.

“Poynter has conducted a number of our journalism trainings in the past, and we’ve always been highly satisfied with the results,” Bell said. “The organization’s knowledge, customer service and digital capabilities will only enhance the impact of the SRI program.”

Under the new partnership, Poynter will work with McCormick to create an online application process for organizations applying to host SRIs. Poynter will work with selected SRI hosts to create a custom training resource page on the News University website and to help measure outcomes of the events.
 
Typically, SRI hosts receive grants of $35,000-$50,000. An SRI is organized and administered by a non-profit host, which convenes a diverse group of 15-20 journalists, often from small to mid-sized news organizations, for a program lasting two to three days. Participants represent all media platforms, and grant funds cover all or most of participants’ travel, lodging and tuition.

The goals of a Specialized Reporting Institute are to:

  • Identify key sources and resources on the topic.
  • Develop story ideas for today, tomorrow and six months from now.
  • Enable reporters to meet like-minded colleagues for tips and support, during the training and beyond.
  • Build confidence for those new to the topic and help those more familiar to see new possibilities
  • Provide training and professional development to reporters working for smaller organizations, including community and ethnic media.
  • Share the learning with new tools and technology and by urging newsroom participants to host training for colleagues when they return home.

“I commend McCormick for the SRIs. They have long brought valuable information, insights, context and contacts to journalists,” Dunlap said. “In this digital era, when quality content must find its audience, Poynter is proud to be able to take the lessons of each SRI online, beyond the on-site walls, and reach thousands of journalists, academics, students and other content creators.”

About The Poynter Institute
Poynter trains journalism practitioners, media leaders, educators and other citizens in the areas of multimedia, leadership and management, reporting, writing and editing, ethics and diversity, journalism education and visual journalism. Poynter’s News University (www.newsu.org) offers interactive e-learning modules and links to other journalism education and training opportunities. Poynter’s website, (www.poynter.org) is the dominant provider of journalism news, with a focus on business analysis and the opportunities and implications of technology.

About the McCormick Foundation
The McCormick Foundation is a nonprofit organization committed to strengthening our free, democratic society by investing in children, communities and country. Through its grantmaking programs, Cantigny Park and Golf, museums, and civic outreach program the Foundation helps build a more active and engaged citizenry. It was established as a charitable trust in 1955, upon the death of Colonel Robert R. McCormick, the longtime editor and publisher of the Chicago Tribune. The McCormick Foundation is one of the nation’s largest charities, with more than $1 billion in assets. For more information, please visit www.McCormickFoundation.org.

CONTACT INFORMATION

Wendy Wallace, faculty, wwallace@poynter.org
; Jessica Sandler, marketing director, jsandler@poynter.org 
Phone: 1-888-POYNTER (1-888-769-6837)

Read more

Tools:
0 Comments

Thursday, Sep. 09, 2010

Poynter’s NewsU Introduces New Certificate Program

St. Petersburg, FL (September 8, 2010) – Poynter’s e-learning project, News University, announced today the launch of its new Certificate Program, which is designed to help editors, publishers and educators assess a participant’s understanding of the journalism industry’s essential skills and best practices. In addition, the certificates can also be used by individuals interested in enhancing their skills and demonstrating a level of proficiency.

Individuals earn a certificate by successfully completing the assessments in a curriculum track of Poynter NewsU e-learning modules. Poynter NewsU currently offers three certificates, Understanding Journalism, Basic Reporting and Writing Skills, and Multimedia Basics. It also plans to launch additional certificates in the coming months.

“Many individuals are seeing opportunities to supplement their income by writing for both traditional media companies and the new content providers,” said Howard Finberg, director of interactive learning at The Poynter Institute. “These certificates allow users to brush up on their skills and show how much they know. For editors and publishers, these certificates offer a tool for finding the best candidates in a crowded marketplace.”

In addition to editors and professionals, Poynter NewsU believes educators may also find the certificates a valuable resource, both as a preassessment tool to gauge the skills of new students or throughout a semester to supplement other teaching materials. Poynter NewsU plans to offer custom certificates, which would allow professors and newsroom editors to create a combination of NewsU modules and assess the proficiency of their students and/or contributors. This custom certificate program is being tested this fall at the University of South Florida and Kent State University.

For more information about the Certificate Program, visit http://www.newsu.org/resources/certificates

About Poynter’s News University
Poynter’s News University (www.newsu.org) offers training to journalists, journalism students, teachers and the public through interactive e-learning modules and links to other journalism education and training opportunities.

About Poynter
The Poynter Institute trains journalism practitioners, media leaders, educators and citizens in the areas of online and multimedia, leadership and management, reporting, writing and editing, TV and radio, ethics and diversity, journalism education and visual journalism. Poynter’s website, (www.poynter.org) is the dominant provider of journalism news, with a focus on business analysis and the opportunities and implications of technology.

Contact:

Howard Finberg
Director, Interactive Learning
hfinberg@poynter.org
Read more

Tools:
0 Comments

Wednesday, Aug. 04, 2010

NewsU Survey Finds Educators Are Integrating E-Learning Into Curriculum

St. Petersburg, FL– Poynter’s News University recently announced that more than 75 percent of educators surveyed are integrating e-learning into their classroom curriculum. And of those who responded affirmatively, more than 60 percent ranked it as extremely important to classroom teaching.

More than 625 educators participated in the online survey, which examined how teachers are combining classroom teaching with online learning, such as self-directed courses, Webinars, tutorials and instructional videos.

“Journalism educators, just like journalists, must deal with the new digital world with more innovation and different tools to train today’s students,” said Howard Finberg, director of interactive learning at The Poynter Institute. “The results validate what we’ve seen at NewsU, which continues to show growth and great evaluations among students and teachers, in addition to professionals across media platforms.”

In addition to viewing online training as an important tool in the classroom, 70 percent of educators said that online training is very relevant to their classroom teachings. A majority also believe that their students value online training, both in terms of importance and relevance.

“One of the great values of e-learning programs such as NewsU is its grounding in professional, real-life examples. Add ‘interactive’ and ‘expertise’ to the mix and students respond to training that matches their digital lifestyle,” said Finberg.

The survey also found that 57 percent of respondents believe that online training has made them a better teacher. Respondents had an opportunity to explain their answers in more detail, and the following are some of those responses:

  • “The modules help me to be able to relate the information to what others are saying and to refer to work being done elsewhere more directly. Connecting more dots is important and adds to classroom lectures/presentations. I can also cover more material more quickly — a surprise, actually.”
  • “Finding and then incorporating these materials in the syllabus helps me organize my exercises and related exams earlier. Better organization helps me craft a stronger semester.”
  • “E-learning tools allow students to learn at their own pace, access information on their own time, and apply the information to specific projects.”

Seventy-seven percent of the educators who responded to the survey teach at the college undergraduate level, followed by graduate level (19 percent) and high school (2 percent). Of those who haven’t incorporated e-learning into the classroom, a majority cited cost and lack of relevance to the subject matter as primary reasons.

Finberg will present the results of the survey during a session at the AEJMC conference in Denver on August 5 at 5 p.m. The session is open to all AEJMC attendees and will be in Tower Court A at the Sheraton Denver Downtown.

About NewsU
Poynter’s News University (www.newsu.org) offers training to journalists, journalism students, teachers and the public through interactive e-learning modules and links to other journalism education and training opportunities.

About Poynter
The Poynter Institute trains journalism practitioners, media leaders, educators and citizens in the areas of online and multimedia, leadership and management, reporting, writing and editing, TV and radio, ethics and diversity, journalism education and visual journalism. Poynter’s Web site (www.poynter.org) is the dominant provider of journalism news with a focus on business analysis and the opportunities and implications of technology.

Read more

Tools:
0 Comments

Friday, July 30, 2010

Poynter Awarded McCormick Grant for Gulf Oil Workshop

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Thanks to a new grant from the McCormick Foundation, The Poynter Institute will lead a three-day Specialized Reporting Institute (SRI) to help journalists learn how to tell the stories they are likely to be writing for years to come following this summer’s BP oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. The SRI, “The Gulf Oil Disaster: Covering What Comes Next,” will be presented in partnership with The (New Orleans) Times-Picayune, PolitiFact, Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE), the Society of Environmental Journalists (SEJ) and Loyola University’s Center for Environmental Communication. The workshop will be held at The Times-Picayune, beginning August 23 and will be free to as many as 20 journalists.

“Poynter seeks to use multiple platforms to develop high-impact training and journalistic resources that will help reporters and editors provide compelling coverage of this complex and far-reaching story now and in the coming year,” said Poynter President Karen B. Dunlap. “We are pleased to partner with the McCormick Foundation on these important skills-building conferences.”

Later in August, Poynter and McCormick pair up again to host an SRI focused on investigating local government on a budget.

“Poynter is America’s premier journalism continuing education and research organization,” said Clark Bell, the McCormick Foundation’s Journalism Program Director. “Karen and her staff have done a terrific job in elevating the performance of our Specialized Reporting Institute series. Poynter is a trusted and valued partner.”

Poynter’s Al Tompkins, an Emmy Award-winning broadcaster, will lead the “Gulf Oil Disaster” workshop during which numerous topics will be addressed, including long-term dangers to marshes and beaches, the future of oil drilling in the Gulf, how to keep audiences engaged in the story, how to use government databases to investigate the stories ahead and the use of social media among journalists and activists to gather information from the public.

“We believe we can provide the most value to participants by helping them cover the next phases of, among other things, the legal, political, economical and environmental aspects of this story,” said Tompkins.

Additionally, Poynter’s News University, the institute’s e-learning portal, will host a Webinar on August 24 with Dr. Bob Thomas of the Loyola University Center for Environmental Communication. Poynter Online will provide coverage of the program as well.

For more information or to apply for “The Gulf Oil Disaster: Covering What Comes Next,” please visit www.poynter.org/10OilDisaster.

About The Poynter Institute
Poynter trains journalism practitioners, media leaders, educators and citizens in the areas of online and multimedia, leadership and management, reporting, writing and editing, TV and radio, ethics and diversity, journalism education and visual journalism. Poynter’s News University (www.newsu.org) offers newsroom training to journalists, journalism students, teachers and the public through interactive e-learning modules and links to other journalism education and training opportunities. Poynter’s website, (www.poynter.org) is the dominant provider of journalism news, with a focus on business analysis and the opportunities and implications of technology.

About the McCormick Foundation
The McCormick Foundation is a nonprofit organization committed to strengthening our free, democratic society by investing in children, communities and country. Through its grantmaking programs, Cantigny Park and Golf, museums, and civic outreach program the Foundation helps build a more active and engaged citizenry. It was established as a charitable trust in 1955, upon the death of Colonel Robert R. McCormick, the longtime editor and publisher of the Chicago Tribune. The McCormick Foundation is one of the nation’s largest charities, with more than $1 billion in assets. For more information, please visit www.McCormickFoundation.org.

CONTACT INFORMATION
Al Tompkins, faculty, atompkins@poynter.org

Jessica Sandler, marketing director, jsandler@poynter.org 

Phone: 1-888-POYNTER (1-888-769-6837)

Read more

Tools:
0 Comments

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Poynter Names Briggs and Caplan as Ford Teaching Fellows in Entrepreneurial Journalism

The Poynter Institute has named Mark Briggs and Jeremy Caplan as Ford Fellows in Entrepreneurial Journalism Teaching.

As part of a new Poynter initiative in entrepreneurial journalism funded by the Ford Foundation, Briggs and Caplan will teach in Poynter seminars and NewsU courses, will write for Poynter Online and will mentor start-up initiatives.

Both will teach next week at Poynter in Bottom Line News: Creating Sustainable Journalism Start-ups, a seminar for 20 participants from around the country. Sessions will include training in such areas as the innovation process, business basics, technology, social marketing and legal and ethical issues.

Briggs, who also serves as director of digital media at KING 5 TV in Seattle, co-founded Serra Media, a technology company that connects local publishers with interactive applications aimed at serving and growing local audiences. Previously, he ran online operations at the Tacoma News Tribune and the Everett Herald. He has authored two books, “Journalism 2.0″ and “Journalism Next,” and is at work on a volume exploring entrepreneurial journalism.

Briggs is a graduate of Gonzaga University in Spokane and holds a master’s degree in journalism and mass communications from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Caplan, in addition to his role at Poynter, is a visiting professor at the Graduate School of Journalism at the City University of New York and has taught at St. John’s University and at Hunter College. He is a former reporter for TIME and Newsweek, and served as senior associate editor at Yahoo! Internet Life. An accomplished violinist, Caplan conducted a video interview/duet with cellist Yo-Yo Ma for TIME.

Caplan is a graduate of Princeton University and holds master’s degrees from Columbia’s Graduate School of Journalism and the Columbia Business School.

Briggs and Caplan report to Bill Mitchell, who leads Poynter’s entrepreneurial journalism program, and to Stephen Buckley, who is dean of faculty.

“One of the most important elements of successful entrepreneurship is assembling an effective team,” Mitchell said. “Mark and Jeremy bring to Poynter a range of experience and expertise that will enable us to get off to a fast start helping journalists and others create sustainable media ventures.”

Poynter’s work in entrepreneurship includes two week-long training programs focused on producing quality journalism on emerging platforms while generating sustaining revenue. The institute will also create an online entrepreneurial course to serve as a continuing, accessible source of training. And Poynter will work with one or more journalism start-ups, helping entrepreneurs build their enterprise and highlighting lessons learned along the way.

Poynter’s efforts in this area are made possible by a $750,000 grant from the Ford Foundation. Ford has joined forces with Poynter to address the need for research and training provoked by the changes sweeping traditional journalism and emerging forms of content creation and distribution. In addition to entrepreneurship, the grant funds Poynter’s work with the emerging media sector known as the Fifth Estate, a group that includes bloggers and others who provide news, information and analysis to fellow citizens.

Poynter is using the grant to help journalists and non-journalists alike make sense of the news and to create the new ventures consumers will need to inform themselves in a well-functioning democracy.

About The Poynter Institute

Poynter trains journalism practitioners, media leaders, educators and citizens in the areas of online and multimedia, leadership and management, reporting, writing and editing, TV and radio, ethics and diversity, journalism education and visual journalism. Poynter’s News University offers newsroom training to journalists and journalism students through interactive e-learning modules and links to other journalism education and training opportunities. Poynter’s website is the dominant provider of journalism news, with a focus on business analysis and the opportunities and implications of technology.

About the Ford Foundation

The Ford Foundation is an independent, nonprofit grant-making organization. For more than half a century it has worked with courageous people on the frontlines of social change worldwide, guided by its mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation and advance human achievement. With headquarters in New York, the foundation has offices in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

Contact information

Bill Mitchell, faculty, bmitch@poynter.org

Jessica Sandler, marketing director, jsandler@poynter.org

Phone: 1-727-821-9494 Read more

Tools:
0 Comments

Friday, Mar. 26, 2010

Poynter Receives $750,000 Ford Foundation Grant To Expand Sense-Making Programs

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — A $750,000 grant from the Ford Foundation will enable The Poynter Institute to expand a series of initiatives aimed at addressing the troubling crisis in journalism by fostering a competitive, independent and responsible news industry that takes full advantage of the emerging digital technology.

Specifically, Poynter will cultivate and incubate new entrepreneurial media models in the digital space; deepen its understanding of how citizens are consuming news in the digital era; create case studies that analyze and help the public understand the workings of the nontraditional news sector, known as the Fifth Estate, and train those nontraditional journalism practitioners in a variety of journalism areas, including ethics and accuracy.

Poynter, a school dedicated to serving journalism in the interest of democracy, aspires through this project to influence — for the good of a democratic society — the news values that are emerging among those who are contributing news and information to this rapidly changing media landscape.

“Poynter has long been a leader in teaching journalists and media owners,” said Poynter President Karen B. Dunlap. “Now we will become a leader in helping citizens make sense of this new universe of news and, hopefully, help the news industry learn how to sustain itself.”

“With the advent of the Internet, consumers now have at their fingertips access to more sources of news and information than ever before, however, the integrity of these new media sources remains uncertain,” said Calvin Sims, Program Officer for News Media and Journalism for the Ford Foundation. “Through our support for the research and training programs of the Poynter Institute, we seek to infuse standards and ethics in the new digital media space to help insure that the information the public consumes is both reliable and responsible.”

With the new one-year grant, Poynter will greatly expand work begun with Ford’s support in 2009 to identify and train the next iteration of news media. First, Poynter will collaborate with members of the Fifth Estate — freelancers, bloggers, entrepreneurs and other Web independents — to expand the ongoing work on a project called Sense-Making, and second, the Institute will build a core of training programs for entrepreneurial journalists, while helping a journalism start-up develop an entrepreneurial model from which others can learn.

Widening its scope on Sense-Making, Poynter will continue its case study program and develop an interactive case study tool that can be used for instruction — either in-person or self-directed. It will create and disseminate the Sense-Making Journal, an investigative online blog that will help the public understand information it receives from new sources of news.

“We intend to become the go-to site for a broad audience seeking clear analysis of the information being pushed out to the public via multiple layers of news and information providers,” said Kelly McBride, Poynter’s ethics group leader and lead faculty for the Sense-Making programs. “We’ll scrutinize news, opinion, “spin,” marketing, even punditry, looking for the truth and motives behind information.”

In May, Poynter will host its second Sense-Making conference in St. Petersburg, reconvening members of the Fifth Estate to help formulate a plan for training new voices in journalism. And it will convene a larger event in June in Washington, D.C. Additionally, Poynter will offer two on-the-ground training programs for non-traditional journalists, strengthening the news they produce by improving craft skills and helping them extend their influence.

“We will encourage the most influential voices in the Fifth Estate to articulate principles that serve the public good and create a process for going forward that ensures those principles will remain the motivating force behind their work,” Dunlap said.

The Institute also will embark on an intense effort to help journalism entrepreneurs, offering two training programs on how to produce quality journalism on emerging platforms while generating sustaining revenue. The Institute also will create an online entrepreneurial course to serve as a continuing, accessible source of training. Finally, Poynter will incubate and support a journalism start-up, guiding the company in audience research and new product development, to include analysis of revenue models most effectively matched with various forms of content provided by the start-up. The incubator will serve as both a laboratory and showcase for lessons learned.

“Our goal is to replace some of the doom and gloom characterizing the current journalism landscape with the energy and enterprise of the entrepreneur,” said Poynter faculty member Bill Mitchell, who will lead entrepreneurial training.

Finally, Poynter will expand its expertise and capacity by naming a Ford Fellow in Entrepreneurial Journalism Teaching. The fellow will work with Poynter faculty to assess the training needs of entrepreneurs, design and teach seminars, help guide the incubator project and report findings.

“We see clearly the connection between shoring up the core of journalism, influencing and strengthening the new entrepreneurs, and using sense-making to help journalists and the public fulfill the greater democratic mission we share,” said McBride. “Amidst great change, our goal remains constant: to promote credible journalism on behalf of the public we ultimately serve.”

About The Poynter Institute

Poynter trains journalism practitioners, media leaders, educators and citizens in the areas of online and multimedia, leadership and management, reporting, writing and editing, TV and radio, ethics and diversity, journalism education and visual journalism. Poynter’s News University offers newsroom training to journalists and journalism students through interactive e-learning modules and links to other journalism education and training opportunities. Poynter’s Web site is the dominant provider of journalism news, with a focus on business analysis and the opportunities and implications of technology.

About the Ford Foundation

The Ford Foundation is an independent, nonprofit grant-making organization. For more than half a century it has worked with courageous people on the frontlines of social change worldwide, guided by its mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement. With headquarters in New York, the foundation has offices in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia.

Contact information

Kelly McBride, faculty, kmcbride@poynter.org 
Jessica Sandler, marketing director, jsandler@poynter.org
Phone: 1-888-POYNTER (888-769-6837)
Read more

Tools:
0 Comments

Thursday, Mar. 18, 2010

McCormick Awards Poynter a Specialized Reporting Grant

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Thanks to a $50,000 grant from the McCormick Foundation, The Poynter Institute will present “Investigating Local Government on a Budget,” a new three-day conference for learning the tools of investigative reporting — even in newsrooms without resources to undertake large investigations.

The conference will encourage participation from reporters in small and mid-sized newsrooms, teaching them how to hold local government officials accountable at a time when they are cutting vital services. Poynter, a school dedicated to serving journalism in the interest of democracy, will present the conference at its St. Petersburg campus beginning Aug. 29.

“Investigative reporting is critical to good journalism and local reporters need help,” said Poynter President Karen B. Dunlap. “Just as billions of dollars in federal stimulus monies are flowing through local contractors and government agencies, most newsrooms are struggling to cover investigative stories. Poynter is pleased to partner with the McCormick Foundation on this important skills-building conference.”

“The Poynter conference is one of five Specialized Reporting Institutes that we are funding in 2010,” said Clark Bell, the McCormick Foundation’s Journalism Program Director. “This project will showcase Poynter’s ability to create useful, intensive and timely training workshops for journalists.”

The decision to fund the conference comes as some newsrooms, in the aftermath of staff reductions, have decided to assign a higher priority to watchdog reporting.

Poynter’s Al Tompkins, an Emmy Award-winning broadcaster, will lead the conference, along with investigative reporting experts from around the country. “Some of the best local investigative journalists in the business will join us to teach beat reporters how to ask better questions and think critically about local stories,” Tompkins siad. “We’ll show reporters how to use databases to uncover important stories and to tell engaging multimedia stories on a shoestring.”

Other Poynter faculty will teach in the areas of ethical decision-making, beat reporting and technology. Additionally, portions of the conference will be recorded and made available through Poynter’s News University, the institute’s e-learning portal.

“It is our hope that the conversations we begin at Poynter will last long after the journalists go back to work,” said Tompkins. “We know from past experience that Poynter investigative reporting seminars often produce a support group through which these journalists build a national network and sometimes work on significant stories together, sharing resources and ideas.”

About The Poynter Institute

Poynter trains journalism practitioners, media leaders, educators and citizens in the areas of online and multimedia, leadership and management, reporting, writing and editing, TV and radio, ethics and diversity, journalism education and visual journalism. Poynter’s News University offers newsroom training to journalists and journalism students through interactive e-learning modules and links to other journalism education and training opportunities. Poynter’s Web site is the dominant provider of journalism news, with a focus on business analysis and the opportunities and implications of technology.

About the McCormick Foundation

The McCormick Foundation is a nonprofit organization committed to strengthening our free, democratic society by investing in children, communities and country. Through its grantmaking programs, Cantigny Park and Golf, museums, and civic outreach program, the Foundation helps build a more active and engaged citizenry. It was established as a charitable trust in 1955, upon the death of Colonel Robert R. McCormick, the longtime editor and publisher of the Chicago Tribune. The McCormick Foundation is one of the nation’s largest charities, with more than $1 billion in assets. For more information, please visit www.McCormickFoundation.org.

###

CONTACT INFORMATION
Al Tompkins, faculty, atompkins@poynter.org
Jessica Sandler, marketing director, jsandler@poynter.org
Phone: 1-888-POYNTER (1-888-769-6837)
Read more

Tools:
0 Comments

Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2010

Poynter Celebrates $100,000 Pledge; Introduces 35th Anniversary Matching Gift Program

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Poynter, a school dedicated to serving journalism in the interest of democracy, has launched a 35th Anniversary Matching Gift program made possible through a $100,000 pledge from Poynter Trustee Andrew Barnes and his wife, Molly.

Barnes, the retired Chairman and CEO of the St. Petersburg Times, said: “Journalism is changing rapidly, but its central mission of informing our democracy remains. Poynter is at the forefront of figuring out how to adapt while retaining what is so important. It’s time for us all to support Poynter as we can.”

In announcing the gift, Poynter President Karen Dunlap said: “As Poynter enters its 35th year, we are celebrating this significant gift which will help us to meet the needs of a changing media landscape as we prepare journalists for the 21st century.  We are enormously grateful to Andy and Molly Barnes for this generous contribution.”

“The Barnes’ gift will enable us to match, dollar-for-dollar, unrestricted gifts of $1,000 received until June 2010,” said Ann W. Madsen, Director of Development.  “Thanks to this pledge, donors who give $1,000 during this special period will be afforded entry into our new leadership recognition program, The President’s Circle.”

Madsen said Poynter would also match the first $1,000 of any larger unrestricted gift during the same timeframe.

The Institute, which was founded in 1975 by Nelson Poynter, owner of the St. Petersburg Times, is a non-profit school dedicated to teaching and inspiring journalists and media leaders.  Poynter stands for journalism that informs citizens and enlightens public discourse.

In creating the Institute, Nelson Poynter said it would be “an institution of such excellence that it will attract support from outside foundations in the form of grants, scholarships and funding of special experimental projects.”

The Institute today trains journalism practitioners around the world in the areas of online and multimedia, leadership and management, reporting, writing and editing, TV and radio, ethics and diversity, journalism education and visual journalism. Poynter’s News University (www.newsu.org) offers newsroom training to journalists and journalism students through interactive e-learning modules and links to other journalism education and training opportunities. Poynter’s Web site, Poynter.org is the industry’s daily destination for news and conversation about journalism.

For more information about making a matching gift, contact Ann W. Madsen at amadsen@poynter.org or (727) 553-4651, or donate online at Poynter.org/donate.
Read more

Tools:
0 Comments

Saturday, Dec. 19, 2009

Knight Foundation, Poynter Join Forces to Train “Underrepresented” Journalists

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and The Poynter Institute has announced a partnership designed to provide professional development to journalists and media leaders from underrepresented demographic groups in an effort to increase their effectiveness and presence in newsrooms. The partnership calls for Knight to provide a grant of $50,000 to Poynter and individual grants of $20,000 to each of six journalism organizations to help fund scholarships to Poynter programs for more than 100 journalists.

“I see this grant as a stimulus to keep good journalists in the news business,” said Karen Dunlap, president of The Poynter Insitute. “To survive and thrive, these journalists and media leaders need continued grounding in journalistic craft and values and new multimedia and entrepreneurial skills. This funding compliments Poynter’s ongoing scholarship campaign and its intent to provide access to training for as wide a range of journalists and media leaders as possible.”

Dunlap noted that the current downsizing of America’s newsrooms has been particularly hard on journalists from underrepresented demographic groups — the same people that news organizations had been slow to hire and promote when economic times were much better.

“The perspectives of these journalists,” Dunlap said, “are essential to an industry seeking creative approaches to engaging communities. Their voices are critical in a society challenged by new realities of globalization and cultural change and old issues of race.”

The grants are intended to provide the journalists who are selected for the program — they will be known as Knight-Poynter Fellows — with training in one of Poynter’s broad range of training venues, including News University; Poynter Online; Webinars; online chats; on-site seminars and regional workshops.

The six journalism organizations scheduled to receive $20,000 grants as part of the program are: National Association of Black Journalists; National Association of Hispanic Journalists; Native American Journalists Association; Asian American Journalists Association; Journalism and Women Symposium; and National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association.

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation advances journalism in the digital age and invests in the vitality of communities where the Knight brothers owned newspapers. Since 1950, the foundation has granted more than $400 million to advance quality journalism and freedom of expression. Knight Foundation focuses on projects that promote community engagement and lead to transformational change. For more, visit www.knightfoundation.org.

About Poynter
Serving journalism and citizens in the interest of democracy, Poynter was founded in 1975 in St. Petersburg, Fla. It is one of the nation’s top schools for professional journalists, future journalists, journalism educators and students. Poynter offers training throughout the year in the areas of online and multimedia, leadership and management, reporting, writing and editing, TV and radio, ethics and diversity, journalism education and visual journalism. Poynter’s News University (www.newsu.org) offers newsroom training to journalists and journalism students through interactive e-learning modules and links to other journalism education and training opportunities. Poynter.org, the Institute’s Web site, is the industry’s authoritative provider of media news, business analysis and practical information about how to advance journalism.

CONTACT:
Jessica Blais Sandler, jsandler@poynter.org
Phone: 727-821-9494
Read more

Tools:
0 Comments