Media College eNews

100 Days in Appalachia to host Mellon Workshop Series

Ashton Marra Teaches

A new workshop series encourages participants from a variety of disciplines and backgrounds to come together and learn innovative techniques for creating robust stories about the Appalachian region.

100 Days in Appalachia, a nonprofit, national news outlet incubated at the West Virginia University  Reed College of Media, recently received an Andrew W. Mellon grant that will support the workshop series and a new full-time practitioner-in-residence who will help increase 100 Days’ presence on campus and integration into curriculum at WVU.  

100 Days launched in January 2017 to combat stereotypes in the first few months of the Trump administration and has since earned a reputation as a go-to source for real stories by the journalists and community members living in Appalachia. In addition to becoming a national news outlet that is changing the way our country perceives Appalachia, 100 Days is a teaching platform that experiments with new community engagement and storytelling techniques.

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'Stories of the Ohio' panel shares insights from collaborative reporting project

Good River Panel

With 25 million people living within the Ohio River watershed and at least 5 million depending on it for drinking water, seven newsrooms in the region joined together to create Good River: Stories of the Ohio, an initiative covering what is often referred to as one of America’s most polluted waterways despite years of clean-up.

The project’s first phase began last May and ended this month with contributing journalists, nonprofit leads and community members coming together at West Virginia University’s Media Innovation Center to celebrate their work so far, which includes more than 20 multimedia pieces that cover the Ohio River’s environment, economy and culture.

The panel shared their own experiences working and living along the Ohio – the progress they’ve seen in healthy water levels and wildlife growth, how to handle new threats like the impacts of climate change, and redirecting the narrative from warning against the river’s dangers to reinvigorating the region’s tourism.

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WVU Reed College of Media launches fellowship to support local news outlets with new investment from Knight Foundation

Newspaper stack at Beaver County Times

Aspiring journalists looking for a pathway to newspaper ownership will get a leg up at West Virginia University thanks to the nation’s only fellowship program designed to maintain and strengthen local news ownership.

“Many current owners are aging and ready to retire but have no succession plans and don’t want to sell their legacy operations to media chains,” said Jim Iovino, director of NewStart, a new entrepreneurial media ownership program at the West Virginia University Reed College of Media which today announced a $200,000 investment from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation that will help students ensure communities stay informed and local democracy thrives.

“They’re looking for people to become part of the community and own and run the paper. And we want to make sure that paper is set up for the long term.”

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