News21 is a program of the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation that is helping to change the way journalism is taught in the U.S. and train a new generation of journalists capable of reshaping the news industry. It is headquartered at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.
Since 2006, nearly 500 top journalism students in the U.S. have participated in the landmark national initiative. Their work has appeared in major national publications, including The Washington Post, msnbc.com, the Center for Public Integrity and many others. It is also published on the news21.com website. The content is free under Creative Commons usage.
Students selected for the News21 program study a topic in-depth during a spring topics seminar, followed by a 10-week reporting fellowship during the summer. Students work out of a newsroom at the Cronkite School and travel the country – and sometimes to other countries – to report and produce their projects.
Students work under the direction of leading news veterans, including Leonard Downie Jr., former executive editor of The Washington Post, and Steve Doig, Knight Chair in Journalism and an expert in computer-assisted reporting. Their work has been recognized with numerous awards from the Online News Association, the Society of Professional Journalists and the Society of News Design, among others.
“News21 attracts top students from all over. It’s an all-star team. So yes, it wins awards,” said Eric Newton, senior adviser to the president at the Knight Foundation. “But more important than the awards, we hope, will be its lasting impact, not just on journalism education or the notion of increased collaboration, but the impact of the stories themselves.”
Carnegie and Knight launched News21 in 2005 as a cornerstone of the Carnegie-Knight Initiative on the Future of Journalism Education. It began with five universities: the University of California at Berkeley, Columbia University, Harvard University, Northwestern University and the University of Southern California. Three years later, seven other schools were added: ASU, University of Maryland, University of Missouri, University of Nebraska, University of North Carolina, University of Texas and Syracuse University.
Over the years, participating schools have produced projects on health, religion, senior citizens, energy, education, the economy, diversity and politics, among other topics. In addition, News21 students have produced national investigations on transportation safety, food safety and voting rights in America over the past three years.
The 2013 national News21 project will bring two dozen top student journalists from 12 universities to Cronkite to conduct an investigation on post-9/11 veterans and the issues they face when they face when returning home .
About the Carnegie Corporation of New York
Carnegie Corporation of New York, which was established by Andrew Carnegie in 1911 “to promote the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and understanding,” is one of the oldest, largest and most influential of American grant-making foundations. The foundation makes grants to promote international peace and to advance education and knowledge.
About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation advances journalism in the digital age and invests in the vitality of communities where the Knight brothers owned newspapers. Knight Foundation focuses on project sthat promote informed, engaged communities and lead to transformational change.
About the Cronkite School
The Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, named in honor of the longtime “CBS News” anchor in 1984, prepares the next generation of journalists in both the time-honored fundamentals embraced by Cronkite and the multimedia skills necessary to thrive as journalists in the digital age. Housed in a $71 million state-of-the-art media complex in downtown Phoenix, the school has about 1,300 students at the undergraduate and graduate levels.
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