In January 2014, two Engineering Without Borders (EWB) teams from the School of Engineering at Ole Miss returned to Togo, West Africa, to complete a school they started building for the people of the Hedome village a year before. Ole Miss Meek School of Journalism and New Media student journalist Sudu Upadhyay and professor Nancy Dupont followed the team to the West African country to document their work. Here is Sudu’s documentary that chronicles EWB’s work and tells a remarkable story of a minister trying to help his people.
The EWB organization will be returning to Togo in 2015 to work on a medical clinic for the village. For more information about the program, contact the engineering school’s assistant dean, Marni Kendricks, email@example.com.
Motivation, inspiration and knowledge – three things university professors and instructors utilize to get their points across to students. On a daily basis, students sit in class and listen to these professionals as they hand out expertise in their chosen fields, stressing what a student has to do to get a job after graduation. Many listen and follow their advice, while others may or may not understand the crucial importance of taking every opportunity and running with it.
One Ole Miss student who did listen and did all the right things is Laura Marcucci. Marcucci is an Integrated Marketing Communications major and graduates in December. And with the New Year comes a new job that is already waiting for her after graduation. Read more on HottyToddy.com.
Technology keeps changing the way journalists tell stories and that has students in Professor Deb Wenger’s Journalism Innovation class experimenting with Google Glass this semester. The Web-enabled eyewear has been used by professional journalists to cover breaking events such as the Ferguson, Missouri, riots and feature stories such as NBA Draft Day through the eyes of Victor Oladipo.
Students were challenged to come up with stories that took advantage of the unique “point of view” video that Glass wearers can provide. For example, Ashleigh Culpepper and her partner Sarah Douglass had USA pole vault champion Sam Kendricks wear Glass during a practice session.
“The Google Glass story was like nothing I’ve ever experienced before,” said Culpepper, “being a pole vaulter myself I never have seen pole vaulting in slow motion. It was one of the coolest things I’ve ever done.”
Journalism students Nicole Bounds and Gabriel Austin asked a dancer with RIOULT Dance NY to wear Glass during a rehearsal at the Ford Center with somewhat dizzying results.
“The most challenging thing is explaining to someone how to work Glass,” said Bounds. “I think it is especially hard because you can’t see what they are seeing on the Glass screen, which makes it hard to explain what to do next. With Glass, only the person wearing Glass can see the screen.”
Wenger says the class is designed to expose journalism students to the latest trends in journalism practice and hopes these experiments will help students understand what’s possible, as well as what’s effective, when it comes to the use of new technologies.
“You have to play around with tech and think through its applications before you can use it as an effective storytelling tool,” said Wenger. “These stories aren’t perfect, but producing them contributed to the learning process that every good journalist has to go through these days.”
It also gave students in the Journalism Innovation course a chance to test out some new skills. The students in Prof. Deb Wenger’s section of the course hosted a twitter chat with ACT 5 speaker Bo Sacks.
They prepped for the chat by participating in one themselves in the week leading up to the event. They researched their expert, promoted the chat through the school’s Twitter feed, as well as to their own followers and kept the conversation going about the future of print in a digital world.
“The final step in the exercise was to summarize the chat through the use of Storify, which allowed students to continue adding to the conversation by pulling in links to Bo’s previous writings and speeches and by adding context to the 140 character exchanges,” said Wenger.
Students also registered for Klout accounts to determine how hosting the chat might affect their impact on social media. Most were happy to report an increase in their scores, though a few lost a handful of followers during the event, at least one gained a couple as well.
“This type of exploration followed by application is critical to helping students understand the point of learning about technology in their journalism and communications courses,” Wenger said.