Dean Diane McFarlin
The Gainesville Sun featured UF College of Journalism and Communications Dean Diane McFarlin in a May 23, 2016 profile. In “A Story to Tell,” McFarlin focuses on the evolution of journalism and her quest to ensure students have a career path following graduation.
University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications (UFCJC) Deputy News Editor and Digital Director in the Division of Media Properties Gary Green published “The New Norm” in the May 2016 issue of Journalism Practice.
This article examines how one Central Florida newspaper used emerging media technologies to communicate and engage better with a newly active audience during its coverage of two high-profile court trials. Through a series of in-depth interviews with participating journalists, the author demonstrates how the Orlando Sentinel disrupted traditional newsgathering and dissemination methods during reporting of the Casey Anthony and George Zimmerman trials, and in doing so, challenged long-standing gatekeeping media theories and exemplified emerging participatory journalism models. Findings show that audience demands for live and continuous information throughout the development of the Casey Anthony and George Zimmerman stories and resulting court proceedings were a driving force in changing outdated journalism paradigms that led to the adaptation of a new norm by the Orlando Sentinel newsroom and journalists.
UF College of Journalism and Communications Telecommunication Professor Churchill Roberts has received a $20,000 Art Works Award from the National Endowment for the Arts to support production and post production costs for his documentary film The Curse of the Terracotta Warriors.
Art Works Awards support the creation of work and presentation of both new and existing work, lifelong learning in the arts, and public engagement with the arts through 13 arts disciplines or fields. This grant was part of the NEA’s second major funding announcement for fiscal year 2016. So far this year, the NEA awarded $82 million nationally to local arts projects and partnerships.
In The Curse of the Terracotta Warriors will tell the little known story of the seven farmers who in 1974 uncovered the Terracotta Army of China’s first emperor, Qin Shi Huang, and how their lives were forever changed after their discovery. Once completed, the film will be offered to film festivals, universities and museums and will be targeted for national broadcast.
Roberts was also a recipient of a UF College of Journalism and Communications seed grant to help fund the film’s production.
The University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications is accelerating its efforts to help organizations use the science and art behind effective storytelling, particularly on digital platforms, to better inform, persuade or connect with their audiences.
The College today named Matt Sheehan to the new role of Director of Stories and Emerging Platforms. Sheehan will transition from his current role as Director of the Innovation News Center (INC), the College’s award-winning, multimedia news operation.
Sheehan will be charged with driving real-world experimentation at the intersection of storytelling, narrative science and social good across all four of the College’s disciplines – advertising, journalism, public relations and telecommunication. He also will work collaboratively in the College’s Media Effects and Technology Lab, which is being spearheaded by Journalism Professor Sri Kalyanaraman.
“Our mission is to develop a strategic vision for emerging storytelling approaches, grounded in solid research, to inform content experimentation,” said Dean Diane McFarlin. “Matt’s visionary work in the INC, deep understanding of emerging technology, teaching experience and strong network of potential partners will allow us to hit the ground running.”
The program will use the College’s extensive student immersion programs and media properties to experiment with content approaches in real-world environments. INC students produce news, weather and sports content for the College’s seven terrestrial broadcast and affiliated digital properties, including the local NPR, PBS and ESPN affiliates. The College also is home to The Agency, an advertising, public relations and consumer research firm led by professionals and staffed by students primarily focused on marketing to millennials.
“There is an increasing amount of science about effective storytelling and how to use stories to prompt social change,” Sheehan said. “My role will be to help apply the science in partnership with industry and academic organizations to demonstrate what is possible and what works. We are fortunate in our ability to take risks and ‘fail fast’ in real-world environments without fear of impact on the bottom line. ”
Experimentation and innovation will be centered in a new content incubator. A team of students from all four of the College’s departments, as well as other disciplines within the University, over the course of an academic year will form and reform into product development work groups. Additional consultants — including developers, content strategists and visiting professionals — will be added on a project-by-project basis.
Sheehan joined the University of Florida in 2011 as director of the nascent 21st Century News Lab and a member of the Journalism Department faculty. The Lab evolved into the Innovation News Center, which Matt helped architect and has led since its launch in 2012. Prior to joining UF, he was COO of a media startup, a former assistant news editor at The Washington Post and worked in administration at University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism.
For more on Sheehan’s perspective on news and news operations, visit his Medium publication.
University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications Telecommunication students Ryan Nelson and Taylor Trache were runners-up in the Society of Professional Journalists student Mark of Excellence national competition.
Nelson was honored in the “Radio In-Depth Reporting” category for a story on the demand for bear taxidermy following the Florida bear hunt. Trache’s series, “Jockeys: Misunderstood Athletes,” was honored in the “Radio Sports Reporting” category.
CJC student winning entries in all categories – print, digital, radio and television – can be seen and heard here.
University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications Journalism students Taylor Bello and Paige Levin have received prestigious Dow Jones News Fund Internships (DJNF). DJNF provides paid summer internships in digital media, business reporting, news editing and data journalism for juniors, seniors and graduate students.
Bello was selected for the news copy editing program and will work at newspapers, websites and other media. Levin will participate in the digital media program based at The Walter Cronkite School at Arizona State University in Phoenix.
The DJNF works with news organizations from across the country to offer students a one-of-a-kind internship that provides professional hands-on training in the newsroom.
Journalism Professor Norm Lewis, who administers the tests for internships, indicated that only about one in ten applicants win an internship, and this is the eighth consecutive year that one or more CJC journalism students have won one.
The Palm Beach Post quotes University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications Advertising Department Chair Tom Kelleher on a May 10, 2016 story “National Hurricane Center, there’s no app for that,” on the value of mobile apps for information sharing and tracking.
Ali Schmitz, BS Telecommunication 2016, has been selected for the highly competitive Carnegie-Knight News21 voting rights investigative journalism fellowship program.
Schmitz is one of thirty-one journalism students from 18 universities selected to lead the national multimedia investigative reporting summer initiative.
This year’s project focuses on the political divide between citizens with significant voting power and those without, particularly in disadvantaged communities. The students participated in a spring seminar taught in person and via video conference by Leonard Downie Jr., former executive editor of The Washington Post and Cronkite’s Weil Family Professor of Journalism. This summer, they will work out of a state-of-the-art newsroom at the Cronkite School in downtown Phoenix and travel the country to report and produce their stories.
Headquartered at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, News21 was established by the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation to demonstrate that college journalism students, under the direction of top journalism professionals, can produce innovative and deeply reported multimedia projects for a national audience.
The UF College of Journalism and Communications is providing financial support for Schmitz’s participation in the program.
Omnicom’s BBDO New York has promoted Kirsten Flanik, BS Advertising 1989, to president of the New York office. Flanik joined the agency in 2006 to oversee the Mars U.S. business and became managing director in 2011. She has worked on many accounts including FedEx, ExxonMobil and Tropicana.
Before joining BBDO, Flanik worked in accounts and business development at agencies such as BBH New York, Cliff Freeman & Partners and Fallon. She was named an Ad Age Woman to Watch in 2010 and was featured in Ad Age’s “100 Most Influential Women in Advertising” in 2012.
“In a business that never stands still, I’m excited to take this next step at BBDO New York as we continue to expand and evolve our offering,” said Flanik in a statement. “I look forward to building on the strong partnership and teamwork that already exists between myself and John and the rest of the BBDO New York leadership team.”
University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications Public Relations Professor Linda Childers Hon will receive the Milestones in Mentoring Educator Award from the Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations. The award will be presented at an induction ceremony in Chicago on Nov. 10, 2016.
Established in 2010 to recognize those who lead by example, the “Milestones in Mentoring” honorees are selected by their peers and the Plank board in six categories: Legacy, Executive, Corporate, Agency and Educator. The Plank Center, housed at the University of Alabama, was named for public relations leader and UA alumna, the late Betsy Plank. The Center develops and recognizes outstanding diverse public relations leaders, role models and mentors to advance ethical public relations in an evolving, global society through a variety of initiatives.
The Educator Award honors educators who have been instrumental in mentoring students and future educators. This award is named in honor of Dr. Bruce K. Berger, an exceptional public relations leader and educator.