News From the Philip Merrill College of Journalism

Journalism Center Offers New Resources For Covering Sex Trafficking of Minors

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Sex trafficking stories seem to be in the news virtually every day. But it can be a tough subject for media to cover. For instance, while newsroom style books and media law guides may offer guidance on when to use words like “accused,” arrest” and “indict” – that many might consider loaded – tips on language for sex trafficking are less clear.

Now, the Journalism Center on Children and families (JCCF) has unveiled a package of resources to help reporters do a better job of covering sex trafficking of minors.

Recently, we asked JCCF Director Julie Drizin about the new resource package, why it was created, and how reporters can get the most out of it..

1) What made the JCCF decide to start gathering resources for reporters to help them cover sex trafficking stories?

Last year, the McCormick Foundation sponsored a specialized reporting institute (SRI) on covering sex trafficking. I asked JCCF Program and Editorial Coordinator Mina Dixon to apply to attend and she was accepted. We agreed that she would work on creating content for our website on the topic for release some time in 2014.
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New Timeline Details Merrill College of Journalism History

COLLEGE PARK, Md. -  A new historic timeline details the history of journalism at the University of Maryland.

Journalism did not become a stand-alone department until after World War II and its own college until 1972, but courses were taught off and on beginning in 1919. Even Curley Byrd – the iconic Terp who went from student to football coach and finally president of the university got in on the act. In 1918 – before the first classes were taught – he was listed in the student yearbook (The Reveille) as a “Professor of Rural Journalism and Coach.”

The Dipity timeline is a “living document” and material will continue to be added to it as possible over time.

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Merrill Doctoral Student Trains St. Maarten Government Staff in Social Media Skills

St. Martin Social Media Workshop

Graduates of the St. Maarten Social Media and Citizen Engagement Workshop show off their certificates of completion. Lokot is in the back row, fifth from the left.   Photo courtesy of the St. Martin News Network.

By Tetyana Lokot

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Merrill College doctoral student Tetyana Lokot  developed and taught a workshop on social media and citizen engagement for the government communicators of the island of St. Maarten (Netherlands) July 10.

The workshop – titled “Social Media and Citizens’ Participation: What is Your Strategy?” – was funded by Netherlands Antilles development agency USONA and organized by the Secretariat of the Council of Ministers of St. Maarten.

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Denny Named CNS Annapolis Bureau Chief

KarenDenny mugshotCOLLEGE PARK, Md. – Former McClatchy-Tribune Editor Karen Denny will be the new Capital News Service Annapolis bureau chief. CNS is the Philip Merrill College of Journalism student-powered news organization with bureaus in College Park, Annapolis and Washington, D.C.

In making the announcement, Dean Lucy Dalglish said, “We are happy to welcome Karen Denny to our full-time faculty. Not only is she a Merrill College graduate and a part-time instructor here for many years, she is a  top-notch editor with an outstanding record at one of the nation’s leading wire services. We’re excited that she will bring those skills to the Capital News Service..”

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Merrill College History: The Humphrey House’s Journalism Connection

Humphrey House on Adelphi Road

The Humphrey House in an undated photo from the UMD Facilities Management website.

By Frank Quine

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – So how did a small and nondescript 1950s brick rambler on Adelphi Road become the epicenter of a national watchdog journalism magazine, a national journalism center devoted to at-risk children, a $2 million grant from the Pew Charitable Trusts and the National Association of Black Journalists?

It all began in 1993. The highly regarded national magazine American Journalism Review, published monthly by the University of Maryland’s College of Journalism, operated from a commercial office high-rise on Route 1 in College Park. AJR sought to reduce its rental expenses and also seek a closer affiliation with the university. Journalism Dean Reese Cleghorn learned of a vacant house on Adelphi Road, near the university golf course, that had been a gift to Maryland in 1991 by the Hugh R. Humphrey family. University records don’t contain background on the Humphreys or why the home was donated, but it naturally became known as The Humphrey House. In time, it was referred to as just The House.

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TERP Magazine Features Q & A With Knight Chair Dana Priest


PH_STAFFCOLLEGE PARK, Md. – The University of Maryland’s TERP Magazine has published an online Q & A with new Knight Chair in Public Affairs Journalism Dana Priest. “A Career Spent Uncovering Secrets” by Liam Farrell looks at Priest’s long career in journalism – when she realized working as a journalist was the career path she wanted to take, the art of investigative reporting, and her book “Top Secret America.”

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Dr. Klive Oh Defends Dissertation

DSC_0033COLLEGE PARK, Md.  – Philip Merrill College of Journalism Ph.D. candidate Klive Oh successfully defended his dissertation Wednesday, June 25 in Knight Hall.  Dr. Oh’s  dissertation was entitled: “What’s in a ‘like’? Influence of news audience engagement on the deliberation of public opinion in the digital public sphere.”

The dissertation committee members included:

  • Professor, Linda Steiner, Journalism – Committee Chair
  • Assoc. Professor, Ron Yaros, Journalism
  • Asst. Professor, Kalyani Chadha, Journalism
  • Asst. Professor, Sahar Khamis, Communication
  • Assoc. Professor, Xiaoli Nan, Communication – Dean’s Representative

Dr. Oh has accepted a position at William Paterson University in New Jersey starting this fall.

Screen Shot 2014-06-25 at 3.55.04 PM

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TERP Magazine Features Alumna Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson of NPR

NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson

NPR’s Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson ’85

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – The Spring, 2014 edition of TERP Magazine offers a look inside the life of NPR reporter Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson ’85. Author Liam Ferrell writes in “Witness to History” that, “From writing about sludge on Maryland’s Eastern Shore to covering protests in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, journalist Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson ’85 has witnessed the gamut of human experience.”

Nelson originally wanted to become a doctor but an introductory journalism class at Maryland changed her mind and a trip to Haiti in 1994 bolstered her interest in foreign affairs. By 2006, she was working for NPR when she opened the Kabul, Afghanistan bureau for the network. A Pulitzer Prize winner, she is currently based in Berlin. She met her husband, Eric ’87 while both were working for the Diamondback. They have a 24 year old son.

Read the full story online on the TERP website.

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Merrill College iBooks Provide Wellness Guide, Help for Incoming Freshmen

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – For the first time ever, students at the Philip Merrill College of Journalism have produced two iBooks* for the iPad that incorporates everything they’ve learned about mobile journalism into digital books with impact. Both iBooks were collected and assembled by students in Merrill Associate Professor Ronald Yaros’ two “Mobile Journalism” courses.

DSC_0075Shell Shock! Being A Savvy Terp Who Survives and Thrives at the University of Maryland

This free iBook is filled with valuable tips for incoming freshman, new transfers and international students at the University of Maryland.  Additional information is available from the companion web site at Download Shell Shock! on your iPad.

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First UNITY Fellowship Goes to Merrill College Graduate Balakit

Melanie Balakit '14 is the first-ever UNITY Fellow.

Melanie Balakit ’14 is the first-ever UNITY Fellow.

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Melanie Balakit ’14 has won the first-ever UNITY Reporting Fellowship. “This is a rare opportunity for a college student to develop immersive multimedia and reporting skills from all over the country. The fellowship is designed to simulate convergence journalism, technology and cross-cultural communications,” said Roberto Quinones, Executive Director of UNITY.

As the UNITY fellow, Balakit will cover five journalism conventions this summer, with travel and hotel accommodations provided.  Conventions include the Asian American Journalists Association, the National Association of Black Journalists, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, the Native American Journalists Association, and the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association.

“We’re very pleased that Merrill College graduate Melanie Balakit is UNITY’s first fellow,” said Dean Lucy Dalglish. “She is a wonderful representative of our undergraduate program and we know she will do us proud covering these conventions.”

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