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Community Journalism

“Democracy dies in darkness” ­ The Washington Post

“Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter.”  Thomas Jefferson

“News is what someone wants suppressed….what we print and what we don’t print matter a lot.” — Katharine Graham

Inside the Classroom

In this course, you will help to provide Metro Richmond residents with the news they need to make informed decisions about things that matter. You will see how good local journalism is essential to the health of a vibrant, engaged community.

You will learn how to determine what makes news and the different ways news is reported and produced.

You will learn how to cover local government and other institutions of power and influence. And you will also learn to write feature articles and human interest stories that paint a fuller picture of the people and places that make up our community.

Classwork will take a liberal arts approach, so you will have readings in news, politics, government, education, social policy, music and poetry (ask me why), and any other topic that will make you a better journalist.

You will also receive detailed training about various forms of news production.

Outside the Classroom

We are partnering with local media in underserved, underrepresented areas of Metro Richmond to give you experience as a professional journalist (without the pay). You will have opportunities to compete head-to-head with veterans as well as create your own path covering people, issues and institutions neglected by traditional media in Richmond. In other words, you will have what is known as a beat to cover and be responsible for producing news that serves your section of the community.

We will travel both locally and to New York City. Start with an extensive exploration of Metro Richmond, not just the nice parts around campus. Discover what it means to be part of an extended community. Eat, shop and invest yourself (with UR funds) just as a professional journalist would.

Our outside trip is to New York to visit UR journalism graduate Chris Hamby, '08 of the New York Times, a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter and author. Did I mention he is a UR journalism graduate? And Pulitzer Prize winner? Two of our former journalism students have won Pulitzer Prizes. Could you be next?

About JOUR 370

JOUR 370 has no prerequisites, and can count towards major or minor requirements in Journalism.