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From the Dean

 

The power of the blog

Alumna Allyson Bird has roiled the waters of newsrooms with two succinct sentences: "I don't think the Internet killed newspapers. Newspapers killed newspapers." She goes on to explain in her "Sticky Valentines" blog post last month that "the vanity of a byline was keeping me in a job that left me physically and emotionally exhausted, yet supremely unsatisfied." Money, not surprisingly, was a factor, too.

Allyson BirdHer "Why I Left News" post has generated hundreds of responses. Many concurring; some differing. The dialogue on the blog and across the spectrum of media musings is worth reading and contemplating. It's at http://allysonbird.com/2013/03/19/why-i-left-news/

I remember Allyson when she arrived as a freshman journalism major, already gifted with the capacity to ask good questions and turn the responses into even better writing. After her 2005 graduation, I saw her stories occasionally and felt she was in an ascendant career. So, I was a bit surprised, though not astonished, to learn she had not long ago left the Charleston paper and taken a job in fund raising. Fund raisers need to be as persuasive as journalists.

Career changes — arrived at via that proverbial fork in the road which Yogi Berra paradoxically advises us to take — are the 21st century norm. I'm here because of one that involved leaving the newsroom for, in part, the classroom. My move provoked no national discussion. More power to Allyson.

But here's the irony, as she herself describes it in a subsequent post:

"I never have experienced such a poignant response to anything I've written. The blog post is 1,457 words with one photo, decidedly less digestible than cat memes and screaming goat videos. Yet thousands of people read it, shared it and responded to it."

Cat memes and screaming goats. That's why I've always liked Allyson Bird's writing.

At that posting, she reported that 165,000 people had read her original post, a circulation many of today's condensed daily newspapers would be thrilled to have. That's the message to newspaper publishers and to us in today's myriad of media possibilities. Let's not kill the newspapers, nor let them be killed. If they want to morph through new delivery systems, that's fine. What we are really saying is let's not sever the lines of access to vital information.

There are plenty of journalists still practicing the profession they love, even if they don't love every moment or everyone in it. Did we ever?

Each fall, scores of freshmen come to us eager to become journalists. They need to hear what Allyson Bird has to say. She was one of them not all that long ago. What I can add is that Allyson was a good journalist and, I expect, will be every bit as good at fund raising. Communication skills are transferable to a breadth of professions.

Charles Bierbauer

Bierbauer signature

 


College News

SLIS student wins Smithsonian Gardens internshipBella Wenum

Library and Information Science graduate student Bella Wenum has been selected for a summer internship with the Archives of American Gardens within the Smithsonian Gardens in Washington, D.C. Wenum is the third School of Library and Information Science student to receive this internship.

In her position, Wenum will process collections and gain archival experience, and she hopes to assist in outreach efforts, especially through social media. The 10-week internship begins June 3.

Read the full story onlinearrow

 

Advertising student recognized in CMYK magazine

Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum

Senior advertising student Maddie McDowell was recognized in CMYK magazine's "55 New Advertising Creatives" showcase for her campaign for Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum. McDowell worked with fellow intern Natalia Fredericks to design the campaign while interning for The Richards Group in Dallas over the summer. McDowell and Fredericks are one of three undergraduate groups recognized in the magazine.

 

Alumnus returns to campus to discuss business journalism

Former deputy managing editor of Fortune Magazine Hank Gilman, '75 journalism, paid an extended visit to the J-school in March as part of the Baldwin Business Journalism Initiative. Gilman spoke to business journalism students, touching on the future of journalism, career options and the keys to journalistic success. Read the full story onlinearrow

 

Carolina News wins first "Best All-Around Newscast" award

The USC Carolina Magazine won "Best All-Around Newscast" in the Society of Professional Journalists' Southeast regional awards. This is the first time Carolina News has won this recognition. The newscast, "Alcohol," was produced by broadcast students Krista Bagley, Sam Davis, Lauren Fulp, Kim Gaffney and Maggie Winterfeldt.

   

Individual students won across the board for their television news pieces: Kyara Massenburg won first place in the television feature category for "The Three Little Bears;" Hannah Moseley took second in the same category for "Spina Bifida: Thomas Clark's Story;" Mike Wadsworth's "Lakeisha Sutton" won second place in the television sports reporting category; Krista Bagley took third place in television general news reporting for "Fake IDs;" Jacob Fisher got second place in television feature photography for "Radioiodine Therapy;" and Chelsea Parler got third in the same category for "Celtic Festival."

The two first-place winners will move on to the national competition. National winners will be announced in late spring.

Nominations open for SJMC alumni awards

Please consider nominating a candidate for Distinguished Alumni or Outstanding Young Alumni! Deadline to nominate someone is April 15.

The Distinguished Alumni are alums of the School of Journalism and Mass Communications who have graduated in 2002 or earlier. Outstanding Young Alumni have graduated in 2003 or later.

Nominations are easy! Just think of someone who has made an impact in his or her career or community. You can even nominate yourself. Fill out this quick form and the SJMC faculty will consider nominations, voting on the finalists. All awardees are recognized at the alumni dinner in the fall. Nomination Formarrow

 


Faculty Notes

Dr. Shannon Bowen, public relations, "What are the best ways to show the C-suite that it is worth investing in measurement?" PR Week.

Tara Buehner, visual communications instructor, Ana Keshelashvili, mass communications doctoral student, "If everyone with a camera can do this, then what? Professional photojournalists' sense of professional threat in the face of citizen photography," Visual Communication Quarterly.

Each year the American Advertising Federation honors professional clubs that demonstrate excellence in education. Professor Bonnie Drewniany, advertising, honorary lifetime board member of the AAF of the Midlands, wrote the report documenting how the club's education initiatives touched a wide constituency including students, educators, advertising professionals, legislators and the Columbia community at large. AAF of the Midlands, which competes with other national clubs with 100-249 members, also won first place for its diversity and membership, second place for its public service and third place for government relations. It has been named Club of the Year.

Dr. Augie Grant gave the keynote address, "Convergence and Disruption: The New Research Paradigms," to the Annual Research Symposium at the University of Tennessee on Feb. 27. Dr. Grant, along with co-author Jeff Wilkinson, professor and director of the journalism program for Houston Baptist University, also delivered two talks, "The Future of Media Education" and "The Next Frontier: Neo-Journalism and Neo-Community," on March 1 to the Academic Innovation Exchange at the National Religious Broadcasters (NRB) Association. On March 2, Grant and Wilkinson delivered a talk, "Exploiting New Media Technologies," to the broadcasters in attendance at the NRB convention.

Dr. Daniela B. Friedman, health promotion, education and behavior, Dr. Andrea Tanner, journalism and mass communications, and Eleasa Van Slooten (Honors College and Arnold School of Public Health student), "Are we getting the health information we need from the mass media? An assessment of consumers' perceptions of health and medical news," Journal of Consumer Health on the Internet.

Dr. Ran Wei, public relations, "Power distance and online organization-public relationship building: a comparative analysis of US and Chinese corporate website," Chinese Journal Communication. Available online.

 


Feature

Media & Civil Rights History Symposium

by James Chamberlain

MCRHS photo

"Citizenship schools" created by South Carolina educator Septima Clark, many of them off the beaten path, quietly paved the way to the ballot box for hundreds of thousands of African-Americans in the South during the civil rights movement. Clark's work was a focus of the second Media & Civil Rights History Symposium hosted by the School of Journalism and Mass Communications in March.

Dr. Katherine Mellen Charron, the symposium keynote speaker, described how Clark used her background in education to establish the citizenship schools in myriad communities to help adult African-Americans become literate, which would ultimately allow them to vote. Dr. Charron is an associate professor at North Carolina State University and the author of Freedom's Teacher: The Life of Septima Clark. It is estimated that after partnering with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, whose increased budget allowed the citizenship school program to spread throughout the South, that as many 700,000 African Americans became registered voters, primarily during the 1960s. Dr. Charron's critically acclaimed biography not only relays Septima Clark's story in detail, but through its telling highlights the importance of education in the history of civil rights, as well as the role black women played in that history. An irony of the 1965 Voting Rights Act is that it made literacy tests for voters unconstitutional and lessened the role for Clark's purposeful schools.

The biennial three-day symposium brought together more than 50 professors and researchers from Texas to Colorado to the United Kingdom. The symposium focuses on the various roles that the media played in the history of the struggle for civil rights.

Carol StabileAt the symposium, the 2013 Ronald T. and Gayla D. Farrar Media and Civil Rights History Award was presented to Dr. Carol Stabile, from the University of Oregon, for her article, "The Typhoid Marys of the Left: Gender, Race and the Broadcast Blacklist."

The Farrar Award, named for the former journalism professor and his late wife, is given to the best journal article or chapter in an edited book on the historical relationship between media and civil rights published during the previous two years.

Dr. Stabile's article dealt with the chilling effect that the "anti-communist" blacklisting of the 1940-50s had on the intersection of entertainment and civil rights — especially the impact it had on the careers of African-American actress/musician Hazel Scott and white actress Jean Muir.


Chamberlin photo

 

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UPCOMING EVENTS

School of Library and Information Science's Deans' and Directors' Lecture by Alice Ozma: "Promises Made: How a Commitment to Reading Can Change Your Life"

April 4, 7 p.m.
Hollings Library

 

Cocky Award Presentation
Thursday, April 25, 5:30 p.m.
Callcott Auditorium

Meet the creators of the Cocky's Super Ad Poll's best Super Bowl commercial of 2013. Mark Sarosi and Johnny Dantonio from Anomaly will receive the Cocky Award for their Budweiser ad.

 

For more information,
contact Annie Lambert at lambert@sc.edu
or (803) 777-6791.


 

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