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Scholarly Pursuits

Poynter Snags Three-Time Pulitzer Prize Winner

DavidBarstowPicDavid Barstow‘s first Pulitzer was for public service, in 2004. The second, a 2009 prize for investigative reporting. And the third came just last year, when Barstow – together with his New York Times colleague Alejandra Sxanic von Bertrab – won for a series about Wal-Mart malfeasance in Mexico.

Moving forward, this esteemed member of the journalism profession will soon be contributing to the website poynter.org and teaching via the organization’s e-learning site News University. From today’s announcement that he is joining the institute’s adjunct faculty:

“David Barstow is one of the premier investigative reporters and storytellers of this generation, or any generation,” said Tim Franklin, president of The Poynter Institute. “He represents exactly what Poynter strives to impart in its programs and its teaching – excellent journalism that serves the public interest. David is the first of several new adjuncts who will be joining the institute’s already stellar teaching team.”

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Outgoing Harvard Crimson Editor Celebrates Paper’s Influence

Sandra Y. L. Korn‘s final column for The Crimson is a good one. After seven semesters on the paper’s editorial board, including two as op-ed editor, she used the opportunity to sing the praises of Harvard’s student newspaper.

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Although, as Korn notes, Harvard does not offer undergraduate journalism or communications degrees, The Crimson is put out daily and delivered to dorm rooms, dining halls and professors’ offices. She also recalls a notable chain of events involving Israel, Palestine and the SATs:

In October 2012, The Crimson published an op-ed titled “Israel versus No. 2 Pencils,” in which Lena K. Awwad ’13 and Shatha I. Hussein ’14 revealed that Israeli authorities had held up that year’s SAT tests, preventing Palestinian students in the West Bank from taking the exam on time. The two authors, who had both graduated from Ramallah Friends School, contextualized this event in broader Palestinian access to secondary and higher education…

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SUNY Students Set for NYC ‘Exotic Literacy Adventure’

SUNYCortlandLogoThere are ten students coming to New York City this weekend from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Cortland, representing the courses “Rhetoric” and “The Evolution of Writing.” While most visitors headed for the Big Apple tingle over the prospect of things like a Broadway show and the view from the top of the Empire State, English professor David Franke is amped up about a less glitzy landmark:

The students’ visit to the New York Public Library will include a private tour of its rare book room. “They asked for the course syllabus and said they’d match the tour up carefully,” Franke said. “It’s just off-the-charts crazy exciting.”

Always great to behold a teacher who is passionate about their subject(s). Franke is the kind of instructor who correlates Smartphones with the hieroglyphic practices of ancient Egyptians. He also considers the advent of modern technology to be at the center of a third seismic writing-practices shift, following the invention of the alphabet and the development of the printing press.

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David Remnick is Syracuse University’s 160th Commencement Speaker

Over the years, a number of top-rank journalists have delivered the keynote at Syracuse University’s commencement. This group includes “First Lady of American Journalism” Dorothy Thompson Lewis (1937), Walter Cronkite (1968), Dan Rather (1984), Steve Kroft (1996) and Ted Koppel (2000).

On May 11 in the Carrier Dome, New Yorker EIC David Remnick will add his name to this list and receive as well an honorary degree. From the university announcement:

“As an author and journalist, David is one of the most insightful chroniclers of world events and the people who shape them,” says SU Chancellor and President Kent Syverud. “He excels at recognizing a great story and knowing how to tell it well, whether the subject is the fall of the Soviet Empire or the rise of Barack Obama.”

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Ivy League Clean Sweeper Says Yale Has the Edge

It started Monday with a Newsday report by Zachary Dowdy. Since then, the incredible scholastic achievement of 17-year-old Long Island high school senior Kwasi Enin – being accepted into all eight Ivy League schools – has been picked up by CNN, USA Today, Good Morning America and many other outlets.

Here’s how the New York Daily News leads things off:

He has a straight-A average. He scored in the 99th percentile on his SAT. And he’s a shot putter, viola player and a cappella singer.

Meet Kwasi Enin, the boy genius from Long Island who’s been accepted into all eight Ivy League schools. His extraordinary achievement was the talk of the education world Tuesday, but the 17-year-old aspiring doctor took all the attention in stride.

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Seth Mnookin Surveys the Science Journalism Landscape

SethMnookinMIT’s School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (SHASS) recently threw three questions at Seth Mnookin, associate director of the school’s graduate program in science writing. All three answers are fantastic.

To the query “… What can typical readers do to ensure the information they get is accurate?”, Mnookin replies:

“There are so many sources of information out there, and it’s important to remember they’re not all equally reliable. Just because someone has a slick YouTube channel with good lighting doesn’t mean they’re reputable.”

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Skidmore College Adds Miley Cyrus to the Curriculum

CarolynChernoffPicPer a report by The Saratogian‘s Jennie Grey, it started in the aftermath of the 2013 VMAs and took fuller form this January when Skidmore College visiting assistant professor of sociology Carolyn Chernoff (pictured) gave a lecture at the Women’s Center titled “The Rise and Fall of Miley Cyrus: Race, Class, Gender and Media.”

Reaction to the talk was generally positive, and as a result, Chernoff is now finalizing the syllabus for a much more extensive examination of Cyrus. A summer learning track:

The course, called The Sociology of Miley Cyrus: Race, Class, Gender and Media, is a 251-level special topics course. Chernoff encourages students to look past the colon in her course title and see what the class is really about.

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Marlon Wayans Takes a Page from Ellen’s Oscars Selfie Playbook

On Friday, one-time Howard University student Marlon Wayans stopped by campus yet again, and this time took a moment to do his own version of Ellen’s epic Oscars broadcast selfie.

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Wayans has been hitting various college campuses in tandem with his traveling promotional tour for Haunted House 2. After his session at Howard, he shared the following on Facebook:

I was so impressed by the questions, the attentiveness and the intention I seen the eyes of students HU. I’m a proud Bison. #theworldisyours

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Scott Pelley’s Reply to Visiting Journalism Student: ‘It Ain’t Easy’

CMANYC2014PosterHeidi Kronaiz, news editor for South Dakota State University’s The Collegian, has a zippy summary of her time spent in New York at the College Media Association’s Spring National College Media Convention. She was there with eight student newspaper colleagues.

Kronaiz says the workshops she attended, part of an overall slate of 250+ events, were “incredibly beneficial.” She also relates her convention highlight, which took place during the keynote address:

For me, the most influential part of Scott Pelley’s presentation was getting to ask him a question. Some students asked questions that were irrelevant to his presentation, looking to get a story, not advice. Being a journalism major with a broadcast emphasis, I decided to ask Pelley what it would take to land a job on a national news network.

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Longtime NYT Science Editor to Receive Honorary Degree

JohnWilfordPicHe’s won two Pulitzer Prizes and his account of man’s first walk on the moon still stands today as a bold step in scientific journalism. Later this year, John Noble Wilford will receive an honorary degree from the University of Tennessee, where he graduated in 1955 with a degree in journalism.

From today’s announcement:

The renowned journalist wrote the New York Times‘ front-page story about the first walk on the moon, which has become the most widely used account of the historic event. He covered all three Apollo missions for the Times. Wilford won a Pulitzer Prize in 1984 for his reporting of science and space exploration, and again in 1987 as part of the reporting team that covered the space shuttle Challenger disaster.

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