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TSU School of Communication students travel to Washington D.C. to cover inaugural Democracy Summit at the Center for Journalism and Democracy

Posted on Friday, December 02, 2022

TSU School of Communication students travel to Washington D.C. to cover opening of Center for Journalism & Democracy

KTSU2 multimedia journalists (l to r) Mario Dunham, Jayhlin Rodgers, Prof. Serbino Sandifer-Walker, Amber Land, and Matthew Parker pictured at the inaugural Democracy Summit at the Center for Journalism and Democracy at Howard University.

Students from TSU’s School of Communication were recently given a seat at the table on reshaping American media and examining threats to democracy.

Four journalism students, along with their professor, were invited to attend the inaugural Democracy Summit at the Center for Journalism and Democracy at Howard University in Washington, DC. KTSU2 multimedia journalists, Mario Dunham, Amber Land, Matthew Parker and Jayhlin Rodgers, were selected by Serbino Sandifer-Walker because of their commitment to the field of journalism.

“I primarily selected the students based on their skill set, enthusiasm and their desire to be journalists,” said Sandifer-Walker, interim assistant dean. “I see their commitment to the tenets of journalism, holding people accountable and finding the stories that matter in the community.”

The Center covered the costs of transportation and lodging, which allowed students to engage in conversation with journalists from across the country at the day-long Summit.

Professional journalists, scholars, and student journalists from historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) gathered at the Summit to discuss racial injustice, policy, fairness, and the threats of democracy as it relates to how professional journalists report the news. 

The Summit addressed holding investigative journalists accountable in their reporting as a direct result of the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection at the US Capitol building.

“As journalists we are the gatekeepers for democracy, and it is up to us to be true to the craft of journalism and keep telling the truth even if it’s not trending because there is so much misinformation out there and being truth seekers and story tellers are our superpowers, said Land.

TSU’s multi-skilled journalism students had an opportunity to showcase their competencies by producing videos, photos and conducting interviews.

“We weren’t treated like journalism students,” said Parker. “We were treated like journalists.”

“This experience was great because I got real world application for something I want to do,” said Dunham. “Meeting journalists who have won Pulitzer Prizes and in certain aspects changed the world and created a discussion that makes it openly available to change laws and mindsets was invaluable.”

The Center for Journalism and Democracy was founded by Nikole Hannah-Jones,

Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist and creator of “The 1619 Project” for The New York Times Magazine. The Center will fund investigative reporting courses designed to train journalism students at select HBCUs.

“The Summit taught me that my voice as a Black writer is important and transformational,” said Rodgers.

Introduction to reporting, intermediate broadcast news, news editing, and advanced reporting are journalism courses offered in the SOC designed to enhance the learning experiences of TSU’s journalism students and prepare them for future careers in journalism.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Category: Alumni, News Media, Faculty & Staff, Students

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Last updated: 12/02/2022