Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Why we need Journalism at NVCC!

Why not? It is something that we deal with everyday, whether it’s through tv, newspapers, or the internet. For back to back semesters, I have enrolled in Journalism I, only to have it cancelled each time, including on the day of the scheduled first class. While I understand the politics behind cancelling a class with only seven students, why can’t the school notice that there is still a demand at the school for the class, and for the journalism itself? The seven students who signed up for the course care about writing. They care about getting a message out to the masses. They want to share their writing talents with the rest of the campus, and beyond. Why should any of these students be punished for something that isn’t their fault?
This situation can lead me into a completely different route. How can a school that raises tuition about 4% each year, only care about the students in the popular programs? That’s a question I can’t personally answer, but would love to hear a response to. What happened to the days of having smaller class totals, so it can be a more personal approach to the teaching and learning process? It’s all about money now. It seems that the relationships that could be formed in the previous teaching style is secondary now, just as long as the bottom line looks good.
Hobson Lopes
There is no Journalism course at Naugatuck Valley and this is a major issue. From a very young age, writing has been my passion. Therefore, when the Journalism class was cancelled, I was one of many disappointed students. I’ve chosen to major in the field of Journalism and taking a class here and now at Naugatuck Valley would help perfect my writing and get me ready for the future. I feel that we have willing students that will not allow this opportunity to go to waste, and will work their hardest to achieve their goals.
The college emphasizes good writing in every class; this is obvious because essays are abundant. Whether you are taking an exam or just working on a homework assignment, many times essays are present. This journalism class would not only make the newspaper better, but students essay writing will improve as well. The project of trying to get this class up and running has already had a major impact. Lara and Hobson have recruited some of us to write for the Tamarack as journalists. With this class, I feel students can do even bigger and better things.
Dennis Brown
I have been thinking about pursuing a career in Journalism, but I am not sure if I have the skills and personality to succeed in this field. A journalism class would be essential for me because I need the tools to learn the craft of becoming a journalist. Journalism is very broad, therefore I need to study and explore the various aspects of it. Through this class, I would have the opportunity to practice and improve my communication skills through speaking, listening, reading and writing. I am certain that this class will be critical in determining if this is the career path that I would like to take. In general, Journalism impacts our lives in many ways. As a society, we need it to communicate to the public the important issues that need to be addressed. It is the way to speak for people who can’t speak for themselves. It also allows our voices to be heard in ways that other mediums do not allow. I believe that we can all benefit from a Journalism class. I am looking forward to acquiring all the knowledge that Journalism I has to offer at Naugatuck Valley Community College.
Yisel de Oleo
According to their welcome page, the Journalism Department within the University of Connecticut subscribes to the definition of journalism education as given by Edward W. Barrett, former Dean of the Graduate School of Journalism, Columbia University:
"The primary aim of education for journalism is the development of disciplines, arts and attitudes of mind: the discipline of giving attention to the distasteful as well as to the appealing; the discipline of learning to gauge one's best effort to fit an allotted time span; the discipline of continuing self-education; the art of expression that is lean, direct, precise and deft; the art of grappling with a complex new subject, extracting information from inarticulate specialists, and synthesizing the finds faithfully and coherently; the art of recognizing fine points of accuracy and subtle gradations of meaning; the attitude of approaching new problems with the open-mindedness and imagination that makes solutions possible. Above all, one seeks the attitude of ruthless fairness, of reporting what he dislikes as honestly as what he likes -- in short, true intellectual integrity."
This concept of education; this type of mentoring; is what a student was expecting to receive upon registering for the Journalism classes that were offered at Naugatuck Valley Community College. It was a deep disappoint to find the course had been cancelled.
In order for development to occur, on any level or by any stretch of the imagination, first lay a foundation. No one will ever argue that the best foundation in life is found in education. For individuals that wish to enter the incredible field of journalism, a program of learning in which the education consists of both classroom and hands-on training, would be exceptional and benefit the students tremendously. The basic concepts of journalism would be taught within a classroom structure, and the close up inner workings of journalism would be taught hands-on through an internship program at a local newspaper publication. An educational program of this caliber would be extremely valuable, as it would make the graduating student completely marketable to either a four-year college or for gaining employment in the industry. However, it should also be noted that journalism programs would even be extremely useful to students who are not pursuing a major in journalism. The development of proper journalism techniques is a tool that is useful in many other genres as well.
To use my medical education and serve the poor in both the United States and abroad is a great desire of mine. The living conditions, the neglect, and the injustice that the underserved are exposed to everyday is something that should be reported. It is my hope that these articles will be used to bring real change and reform to the lives of the underserved in many areas. Learning the proper techniques of journalism would enable me to write all that is seen and experienced in a way that will grab the attention of not only the public, but also the individuals who are in power and can produce the necessary change.
Journalism is a powerful weapon. Benjamin Franklin himself stated “The pen is mightier than the sword.” It is my belief that only good can from a program that develops the “attitude of the mind” and not only provides the student with the real weapons to change the world, but to give a voice to those who are otherwise forgotten.
Loriann Cordero
Journalists are essential in providing accurate and reliable information to the public, whether it’s showing positive changes or unveiling the bad. Journalism also serves as a form of protection for those who cannot speak for themselves. This is the reason why journalists are important to society and one of the many reasons why NVCC needs to consider a journalism class.
There are many reasons why someone would be interested in taking a journalism class. Maybe they are interested in writing a newspaper column some day, or they are interested in going into broadcast journalism and need to have the basics for understanding what style of journalism they wish to pursue. Some like journalism because they want to reflect societal injustice and bring changes where needed. Others look at it as a way to bridge concepts and ideas they have acquired from other studies or careers. One thing is for sure, journalism helps to develop the voices of those who seek it.
While I’m a firm believer in one’s own natural abilities, there are concepts that reporters need to explore and understand in order to develop their skills and be successful. Journalism classes teach about accuracy in reporting, attributing the information to the right sources, being objective in one’s approach, providing clarity, showing human frailty, finding leads, how to interview, laws that protect them and the laws that protect others. More importantly, Journalism teaches one how to have a balanced approach to one’s work.
Just as some colleges require you to take photography classes and to have developed a portfolio in order to apply to their photography program, or to have taken forms of dance in order to get into a school of dance; such is the case with journalism. It is very important that Students learn the different styles of journalism so they can become familiar with what style suits them and to develop a portfolio of work to present to future prospective colleges or employers.
As Managing Editor, I am not a teacher of Journalism. I do not have a journalism degree myself and can’t take a journalism class to learn about the different styles of journalism due to the fact that the class has been cancelled two semesters in a row. I do not mind working with students on articles, as I do enjoy the many relationships I have developed while doing so.
The face of journalism is changing, but this does not mean that journalism is gone; quite the contrary. We need to learn to adapt and find where we fit in. With the web, the opportunities are endless.
It is very important for Journalists to understand what type of laws they should understand, their rights, confidentiality, etc. These issues and more are discussed in basic journalism classes. More in-depth information is provided at later 4 year institutions. However, if we don’t provide the early training, then we are not providing the future voices of tomorrow that will help to serve the community and work to protect its citizens.

Lara Chamberlin

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