Traditionally, journalism students gain professional experience before graduation through internships, part-time or summer jobs, and campus media.
Those avenues are often insufficient to adequately prepare them for professional workplaces and standards.
In a recently published study, Knight Center director Eric Freedman and senior associate director Dave Poulson examine two practice-based programs at the Michigan State University School of Journalism that provide that essential preparation: Great Lakes Echo, covering environmental news in eight states and two Canadian provinces, and Capital News Service covering government, politics and public policy in Michigan.
Undergrad and master’s students staff both news services. Their published and posted articles and visuals are valuable additions to their portfolios and resumes.
The study observes, “The much-bewailed downturn in the economic fate of traditional news organizations benefits these types of practice-driven, production-focused programs at journalism schools.”