These 18 high school students comprise the 2012 Urban Journalism Workshop (UJW) at the Diederich College of Communication at Marquette University. The annual two-week summer program focuses on multimedia news gathering and has inspired nearly 400 students to consider the profession since it began more than 25 years ago.
This year’s group came together during an orientation on Sunday. It’s wonderful to see how well they work together and enjoy being with one another. It’s even better how engaged they were during the first two days of instruction. They asked great questions during an interviewing exercise. They produced impressive images from across the university’s campus after a photography lesson yesterday morning. They also acquitted themselves decently during their first live-tweeting assignment, at the Brewers vs. Blue Jays baseball game at Miller Park last night.
I will rejoin the program as an instructor on Monday, after presenting on digital branding at the National Association of Black Journalists Convention and Career Fair today in New Orleans, and attending the Teachapalooza conference for journalism educators this weekend at the Poynter Institute in Florida. By then, the students will be well into producing their multimedia packages after learning plenty more about telling stories using text, images, audio and video.
Assuming they do what was asked of them, I’m eager to read their daily blog posts – each student created his or her own digital portfolio on Monday – and interact with them via Twitter and the #muujw hashtag while away. Something tells me this great group of potential journalists won't let me down.