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.
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