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Scripps Howard Journalism Institute teaches entrepreneurship

January 03, 2013

Fifteen professors from U.S. universities will come to the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication this week to learn principles of journalism entrepreneurship through the five-day Scripps Howard Journalism Entrepreneurship Institute.

The institute, made possible by a generous grant from the Scripps Howard Foundation, immerses selected faculty in entrepreneurial concepts pertaining to the journalism and digital environments.

It is led by Dan Gillmor, founder of Cronkite’s Knight Center for Digital Media Entrepreneurship and an internationally renowned thought leader on journalism entrepreneurship. He will be joined by speakers who include Richard Gingras, head of news products for Google, as well as prominent digital entrepreneurs and experienced venture capitalists.

“With Gillmor and numerous other digital media leaders on its faculty, the Cronkite School was early to embrace teaching entrepreneurship as part of its journalism curriculum,” said Elizabeth Smith, Cronkite School outreach director, “so it’s only natural that it would share its knowledge with other j-schools wishing to follow suit.”

The 15 fellows were competitively selected. The Scripps Foundation’s goal is to infuse entrepreneurship into college journalism and communications classrooms across the country. Each of the fellow’s universities has committed to offer a class in journalism entrepreneurship in the year following the fellowship.

"There are terrific opportunities in our industry,” said Mike Philipps, a longtime journalist and president and CEO of the Scripps Foundation, “but those best equipped to exploit those opportunities will need to understand how to be entrepreneurial, innovative and nimble in everything they do. We think the best way to create young people with those skills and perspectives is to model the way with skilled and motivated faculty. This program achieves that goal."

Faculty who attended last year’s institute introduced new classes and programs into their curriculum, improved existing classes and forged external partnerships that enhanced student opportunities. They also explored journalism entrepreneurship at a symposium, conference and in research for an academic paper. 

“This institute was life changing,” wrote 2012 participant Derina Holtzhausen, professor and director of the School of Media and Strategic Communications at Oklahoma State University, in a post-institute email. “I cannot quit referring to it with colleagues and in class. They may have even tired of hearing about ‘The Institute.’”

The 2013 Scripps Howard Entrepreneurship Institute fellows are:

• Nsenga Burton, chair, Department of Communication and Media Studies, Goucher College

• Donica Mensing, associate professor, Reynolds School of Journalism, University of Nevada-Reno

• BJ Roche, senior lecturer, Journalism Program, University of Massachusetts-Amherst

• Camille Broadway, assistant professor, Department of Communication Arts, Georgia Southern University

• Kim Garris, assistant professor, Department of Communication/Journalism, Shippensburg University

• Debra Johnson, public relations professional-in-residence, Department of Journalism and PR, Cal State-Chico

• Carrie Brown, assistant professor, department of journalism, University of Memphis           

• Francis McDonald, assistant dean, Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications, Hampton University

• Ryan Thornburg, assistant professor, School of Journalism and Mass Communication, UNC-Chapel Hill

• John Dinges, Godfrey Lowell Cabot Professor of Journalism, Columbia Journalism School

• Brendan Watson, assistant professor, School of Journalism & Mass Communication, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities

• Jose Luis Benavides, associate professor, Journalism Department, CSU-Northridge

• Hans Meyer, assistant professor, E.W. Scripps School of Journalism, Ohio University

• Kimetris Baltrip, assistant professor, A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications, Kansas State

• George Daniels, associate professor, College of Communication and Information Sciences, University of Alabama

The Cronkite School is a leader among journalism schools, recognized for its “teaching hospital” method of hands-on education for tomorrow’s cross-platform journalists and communications professionals. The Scripps Howard Foundation is the philanthropic arm of The E.W. Scripps Company, a leading media enterprise with 19 television stations and newspapers in 13 markets, that's developing and expanding its digital strategies, including social gaming, for multiple platforms. Since 1941, Scripps has operated the National Spelling Bee, one of America's most-enduring celebrations of academic excellence.