WIUM Tristates Public Radio

The World of Journalism Today

Aug 12, 2014

The Shop Talk panelists discuss the challenges of teaching journalism at a time when the media landscape is rapidly changing.

Three of the panelists – Lisa Kernek, Rich Moreno, and Jasmine Crighton – teach budding reporters at Western Illinois University.  Kernek and Moreno are with the Department of English & Journalism while Crighton teaches in the Department of Broadcasting.

Crighton feels many broadcasting students expect to become rich and famous. She said it’s important for instructors to emphasize that broadcasters put in a lot of long hours and hard work, and students are not likely to go right from campus to a job in NYC.

Moreno said print journalism students are most worried about simply getting a job when they graduate.  He tries to impress on students that journalism is more of a calling than a job. He also said he urges journalism students to learn print and broadcasting skills to make themselves more attractive to prospective employers.

Kernek said the landscape is rapidly changing for print journalists and fewer jobs are available. She said the job growth is in public relations – there are roughly four p.r. jobs for every journalism job.

Panelist Rich Egger said that’s a shame because we don’t need more spin doctors – we need more people digging for the truth and holding politicians accountable.