Ole Miss journalism students explore Columbia

By MARK DOLAN,

Teaching journalism is about getting the students outside of the classroom and into real-world reporting.

Earlier this month, along with Dean Will Norton at the University of Mississippi’s School of Journalism and New Media, students partnered with The Columbian-Progress to produce a series of stories about Columbia and Marion County, with a focus on activities being done to overcome the challenges that rural communities throughout the state and nation are facing.

Seven students from the Ole Miss journalism school, five of them freshmen, hit the streets of Columbia for two days to interview residents and business owners, educators and elected officials.

In doing so, they discovered an appreciation for how a newspaper works, and they made connections a town most had never visited. They left town exhausted, but proud.

These are the first published stories for many of these students. Student reporting trips have a long tradition within the journalism program. It’s exciting to see them grow as reporters in such a short time. We hope you enjoy their contributions.

Mark Dolan is an associate professor of multimedia journalism at the University of Mississippi School of Journalism and New Media. Reach him at mdolan@olemiss.edu.