Our Mission

November 18, 2003
Category: Uncategorized

The Poynter Institute is a school for journalists, future journalists, and teachers of journalists. No matter what their job title may be, journalists come to Poynter in a search for excellence. Our faculty provide concentrated instruction and personal support in that quest.

We tailor our programs to serve specific audiences, but all share the same approach. Poynter prides itself on a style of teaching and learning that helps shape every seminar, every conference, every course, into a “Poynter Experience.”

We keep seminars small, which means you get lots of individual attention. We emphasize a hands-on approach, so you may participate in brainstorming sessions, case studies, discussions, role-playing, and other exercises to get you involved in your own learning.

Our resident faculty includes scholars, distinguished professionals, and master teachers who bring special expertise to every session. Each seminar includes visiting faculty, accomplished professionals who leave their jobs to teach, and who spend time with you inside and outside the classroom.

We want our students to leave Poynter better prepared to produce quality journalism, so that readers, viewers, and listeners can make better-informed decisions. We want you to be equipped with new tools to handle the challenges of producing authoritative, responsible, and creative news reports, programs, and publications, and with new ways of thinking about the work you do. Here’s what we hope you might gain from your time at Poynter:

  • The courage to take risks and do your best.
  • A higher sense of self-esteem, new confidence in your craft, and a workbench full of new tools and ideas.
  • A recognition of the value of diversity in the newsroom and in life.
  • The vocabulary to describe what you do and why, and what you stand for.
  • A new network of people who support you in your work.
  • A clear picture of the special role of journalism in a democracy.
  • An understanding that your life’s work is valuable and that you can make a difference.

The Poynter Institute is a school dedicated to teaching and inspiring journalists and media leaders. It promotes excellence and integrity in the practice of craft and in the practical leadership of successful businesses. It stands for a journalism that informs citizens and enlightens public discourse. It carries forward Nelson Poynter’s belief in the value of independent journalism in the public interest.

Founded in 1975 by Nelson Poynter, chairman of the St. Petersburg Times and its Washington affiliate, Congressional Quarterly, the Institute was bequeathed his controlling stock in the Times Publishing Co. in 1978. As a financially independent, nonprofit organization, The Poynter Institute is beholden to no interest except its own mission: to help journalists seek and achieve excellence.

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