We asked a few former students to tell us what they learned in the Newmark J School at CUNY’s Engagement Journalism MA program and how they explain what they do

There is no one better at explaining what engagement journalism is all about than our brilliant graduates. We recently made some videos of them discussing our program and how they talk to others about what engagement journalism is. If you are a prospective student or just someone curious about engagement journalism, I think you’ll love checking these out.

Class and alumni party before the world shut down

For context, engagement journalism can be hard to define; different people and news organizations have their own ways of thinking about the role and its responsibilities.

As the program director, I’ve written about this challenge and my preferred definition, while also suggesting…

The pace of change in newsrooms is slow, but our students and alumni are getting more creative and radical to meet the moment and involve communities in their work

Members of the class of 2019 at Hearken’s Engagement Innovation Summit.

In January 2015, a brave group of about a dozen students joined our first engagement journalism cohort at the Newmark J-School at CUNY.

We were full of conviction that journalists must put the needs of the communities it serves at the center of its work if we want a sustainable and equitable future for news, but we were, and still are, figuring out how a graduate program can best prepare students for this challenging fight for industry transformation.

We’ve learned a lot since then, especially from our own students, who have done so many creative engagement projects, from “prison food…

Much has long been said and written about dogs as our best friends. Better known as Sammy, Fatty, and any number of other random endearments including but not limited to “bunsen burner,” “chunky bear” and “snoogly boogly,” this one was mine.

Sam’s biggest claim to fame is being featured by Reuters. “Sporting” was a bit of a stretch for him, but he was very good at fetching, and the rest is all true.

It’s hard to write about Sam without using cliches like that one because he quite simply embodied all the things that make a good dog good: he was loyal, playful, happy and friendly, beloved by so many people and dogs and most of all, his family.

Although he got his middle name from my childhood dog Toby, Sam was…

The pandemic hasn’t stopped Newmark J-School at CUNY students from engaging communities this summer

Photo by Allie on Unsplash

Zee Ngema, Editorial Intern at OkayAfrica

Ideas and Resources for Serving a Community During a Pandemic

United Nations via Unsplash.

**Updated March 19, 2020. Will continue adding to this document with additional resources and ideas as they become available**

I developed some ideas on for my social (engaged) journalism students, each of which chooses a community to serve during their time in our MA program. I’m sharing in case this is of use to other journalists/students. I rewrote it somewhat for an external audience.

Important note:

I’ll keep repeating this: Your physical and mental health is the most important thing. This is an unprecedented crisis and we will all deal with it in our own ways, and we also all…

Social journalism students showed all that is possible when you engage communities with a commitment to empathy, equity, and sharing power

It was the best night of my professional life.

The 14 members of the social journalism class of 2019 at the Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY shared the results of a year and half of working *with,* not for, communities on a rainy Tuesday night in December, just days before their graduation.

They brought down the house. I don’t think there was a dry eye in the room.

My colleague Jeff Jarvis eloquently shared what each one of them did and how profoundly proud we are; we will link to video of the presentations soon.

Lena Camilletti shares her incredibly powerful and personal work. She is joining ABC News to work in social newsgathering and verification.

Each of our…

Lessons from the “Weave the People” gathering in DC

In mid-May, a diverse group of community “weavers” from a variety of different professions and passions came from across the United States to Washington, DC to talk about the ways in which they bring people together to solve problems and build meaningful relationships.

Supported by The Aspen Institute and led by New York Times columnist David Brooks, Weave: The Social Fabric Project aims to tackle the widespread isolation and division in America that has contributed to a 30 percent increase in suicide rates in the past decade and a half, among other social ills.

Truly the best way to kick off a meeting or conference that I have ever seen

Let me say before going forward…

Apply now for a last minute spot at the Newmark J School at CUNY


Due to an unexpectedly high number of incoming students deferring their admission to next year, the social journalism MA program at the Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY has a few openings for our incoming class that will begin this fall.

Members of student organizations talk at social journalism orientation, 2016

If you are interested in applying, please follow the steps on this page. You can ignore the posted deadlines as we have temporarily re-opened the application.

What *is* social journalism, you may ask? Also known as “engaged journalism,”…

Learn more about social journalism from the experts

By Marie Gilot and Carrie Brown, Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY

Today’s journalists must learn how to engage with audiences in new, authentic, and mutually rewarding ways. Lucky for us, talented trailblazers have successfully reinvented the art of journalistic engagement in the digital age.

Fahrenthold in the Newmark J School at CUNY studio

Some of them teach at our school, the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY in New York City. Others at media organizations and startups around the country have much to teach us by virtue of the enterprising work they’re doing in the field.

No matter if you’re a Newmark J-School student…

Alumni, student and faculty updates and other happenings in our MA program in engaged journalism at the Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY

**If you have any news that I’ve missed, please let me know!**

Allen Arthur, ’16 won the Stephen B. Shepard Prize for Investigative Reporting, the first social journalism alum to win the award. He was also a finalist for the Scripps Howard Community Journalism Award.

Class of ‘19’s Erica Anderson and Tori Hoffman give their final presentations in the fall community engagement course

Erica Anderson, ‘19, had her final project from the multimedia course last semester chosen for the CUNY Film Festival.

Allen Arthur, ’16, landed a job as the online engagement manager for the Solutions Journalism Network.

Rubina Fillion, director of audience engagement at The Intercept, spoke to our metrics and outcomes course.

Ariam Alula Frezghi and…

Carrie Brown

Social journalism director at Newmark Graduate School of Journalism in NYC. Runner; beer & Packers enthusiast.

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