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Media College eNews

24 Jan

The College of Media will be hosting a integrated marketing communications study abroad experience in China from June 2-23. The trip gives students the opportunity to have an international internship within an advertising or public relations agency. In addition, students will be taking an IMC course at Guang Dong University of Foreign Studies (GDUFS) for 3 elective credits (400 level). The trip will spend 4 days in Hong Kong, 13 days in Guangzhou, and 5 days in Beijing. For additional information contact Dr. Sammy Lee or Professor David Smith.

See the attached flyer for details.

19 Jan
1484751161_md Following the 2016 presidential election, voters left a trail of red from Alabama to Pennsylvania, including nine of the 19 states that make up Appalachia.

The national media dubbed the region “Trump Nation” as they searched to find the answers behind what many considered to be a surprise victory for Donald Trump.

But much like America, Appalachia is a melting pot of people representing a variety of social, economic and political perspectives. In an effort to provide a more nuanced understanding of the region to a national audience, West Virginia University Reed College of Media, in partnership with West Virginia Public Broadcasting and The Daily Yonder, is launching the reporting project,”100 Days in Appalachia.”

The project is designed to burst the filter bubble of social news and to candidly narrate the first 100 days of the new Presidential administration from within the heart of our region.

“We’ll listen, and ask the world to listen with us, as people respond to cabinet picks, policies and promises made, said Dana Coester, project editor and creative director. “While we’re at it, we’ll do some soul searching on the role media plays at building, or eroding, peoples’ trust in journalism.”

The project will include a mix of content — news stories, multimedia features, opinion pieces — produced by faculty, professionals, and thought leaders from across the region. Students from several classes will be tasked with editing and curating stories in a social feed.

Dean Maryanne Reed says the project offers students a unique opportunity to work alongside professionals in a real newsroom environment.

“This project will give students the in-demand skills they need to work in a digital newsroom,” Reed said. “Students will learn how to build an audience for compelling content across multiple media platforms. That’s something you don’t see in most traditional journalism classes.”

One item already on the storyboard is a piece that demonstrates how cultural identity and political identity are aligning in new and unexpected ways. The 360 series, “Muslim in Appalachia” will provide a window into what it means to navigate both Muslim and Appalachian identity, while challenging stereotypes of both.

“The voices you hear from this region are usually from very expected sources, they’re very routine,” said Dave Mistich, project managing editor and digital editor/coordinator for WVPB. “What we’re trying to do is reach people who can narrate the first 100 days that aren’t the expected voices.”

Subscribe to the “100 Days in Appalachia” mailing list by visiting and follow the project’s progress on Facebook and Twitter.

18 Jan

The Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) (May 30-July 28, 2017) is now accepting applications from undergraduates who are interested in graduate school and research/creative work within their discipline as well as their faculty research mentors. Selected students complete 8-weeks of full-time research at West Virginia University (WVU) under the direction of a WVU faculty research mentor and a graduate or post-doctoral mentor. Undergraduate participant benefit includes $3,700 stipend. The application works best if the student has a faculty mentor in mind (or vice versa), and they both apply separately, requesting that they each work with the other. Review of completed applications will begin March 1, 2017. For more information and link to the online applications (for undergraduates and faculty research mentor), visit the SURE website .

Spring Symposium: The Office of Undergraduate Research and the Honors College in conjunction with Undergraduate Admissions are organizing a campus-wide, culminating spring poster event to celebrate undergraduate scholarly activity (research/creative endeavors) whilst encouraging prospective students to decide on attending WVU. We are now accepting abstracts for this event that is set to take place on Saturday April 8, 2017 (1-3 p.m.) in the Mountainlair Ballrooms. To submit an abstract, go to The poster event will coincide with prospective student and family attendance at the April 8 Decide WVU Day at the Mountainlair. Please encourage your undergraduate students to submit abstracts for consideration by the February 15, 2017 deadline. More info? Contact

18 Jan
1484687857_md The West Virginia University Reed College of Media is in an optimistic “State of Mind” after receiving its largest planned gift ever.

A journalism alumna who wishes to remain anonymous has pledged $700,000 to the College through a planned estate gift. The bequest is part of “A State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University.”

At the time the money becomes available, it will be used to support major journalism initiatives that provide students with both foundational skills in writing, reporting and research and new skills in emerging journalistic practice.

“We are very appreciative of the generosity of our donor whose gift will have a transformative impact on the College,” said Dean Maryanne Reed. “Private giving is essential to support the good work of our students and faculty and the continued growth and success of our academic programs. “We still have a year to go in the campaign, and we hope to end 2017 on a high note.”

The College of Media’s fundraising efforts are part of a comprehensive campaign to raise money for WVU and its regional campuses. “A State of Minds” was launched by the WVU Foundation in 2012 and runs through the end of this year.

Proceeds raised during the campaign will be used for a variety of funding priorities including scholarships and enhancement funds, faculty research support, student projects and capital improvements.
What type of legacy will you leave? Planned gifts are one of the best ways to support WVU and benefit yourself and your loved ones at the same time. With thoughtful planning you can:

• Make a gift that costs nothing during your lifetime
• Give stock and realize larger tax savings
• Get quarterly income for life in return for you gift
• Donate your house, continue to live there, and get a tax break at the same time

It’s never too early to get started, check out the WVU Foundation’s interactive Legacy Planner for ideas. You can also connect with the College of Media directly by contacting Director of Development Tiffany Samuels at or 304.293.6775.

9 Jan

As a young professional and a student at the P.I. Reed School of Journalism, now West Virginia University Reed College of Media, Martha Smith, (BSJ, 1970) had some unforgettable mentors. Martha Smith

Legendary West Virginia sportswriter Mickey Furfari, his wife Betty, a columnist at The Dominion News, now The Dominion Post and beloved journalism professor Paul

Atkins left such an impression on Smith that she is creating endowed scholarships in their names.
Smith’s planned gift of $155,000 will establish the Mickey and Betty Furfari Endowed Fund and the Professor Paul A. Atkins Endowed Fund. The money will provide scholarships to undergraduate students studying journalism at the College of Media.

As a student writer, Smith worked with the Furfaris during a summer at The Dominion News. She was able to observe Mickey in the newsroom and get hands-on experience with Betty as a contributor to her society column. She became friends with the Furfaris and remained in contact with them throughout her career.

As for Atkins, she says having him as a professor helped her become a stickler for spelling and editing.
“If I see a typo I will point it out,” said Smith. “When I do, people always ask if I’m a teacher. I respond: ‘No, I’m a journalist.’”

A first generation college graduate, Smith recognizes the importance of giving since she was able to attend WVU with the help of scholarships. Smith wants to give budding journalists the same opportunity.

“When I get the alumni magazine, I am very interested to read about the students going places and helping people,” said Smith. “I support what the College and its students are doing, and it’s time to put my money where my mouth is.”

Smith a native of West Virginia spent 50 years as a journalist including 30 years as a staff member of the Providence Journal. She has received several honors including New England Magazine Journalist of the Year and an induction into the Rhode Island Press Association Hall of Fame. She is the author of two books, her most recent, “Me and Mr. Zane Grey,” was released this year and is available nationally.

Betty Furfari was a 1947 graduate of the School of Journalism and Mickey graduated from the School in 1948. The couple met while working together at The Daily Athenaeum.

Betty passed away in 2004, just shy of the couple’s 56th wedding anniversary. Mickey referred to her as his “best friend, editor and confidant.”

Mickey passed away last July at the age of 92. He began covering WVU sports for the Times West Virginia in 1989, and he continued his column until his passing. Furfari was a five-time winner of the West Virginia Sports Writer of the Year award and a member of the WVU Sports Hall of Fame.

Known as the “Flying-A,” Paul Atkins taught at the School of Journalism for 33 years before retiring in 1986. In addition to being a full-time professor, Atkins served as the faculty adviser of The Daily Athenaeum for 12 years, holding the position longer than anyone else.

What type of legacy do you want to leave? Join other Mountaineers who are making a difference and connect with us by visiting or email Director of Development Tiffany Samuels at

The gift was made in conjunction with A State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University which runs through December.

3 Jan
Commencement_December_2016_080 copy On Friday, December 16, 75 students from the WVU Reed College of Media participated in the University’s Commencement Ceremony. The annual event was held at the WVU Coliseum. This year’s keynote speaker was Sean McWilliams, an assistant professor in the WVU Department of Physics and Astronomy. McWilliams stressed that graduates should utilize their newfound knowledge and abilities to work together toward a common goal of a greater, grander future for all of humanity. Watch the full video at
21 Dec

2016 December Commencement

December 21, 2016

On Friday, December 16, graduates from the WVU Reed College of Media celebrated the culmination of their college careers at the University’s December Commencement ceremony held at the WVU Coliseum. The ceremony’s keynote speaker was Sean McWilliams, an assistant professor in the WVU Department of Physics and Astronomy.

Each December, The College of Media recognizes its Top Overall Graduate. This year the honor goes to Hannah Booth. Booth is a native of Buffalo, West Virginia. She earned a bachelor’s degree in strategic communications with an emphasis in public relations. After graduation, Booth will join the College of Media staff as the social media and marketing coordinator for the Media Innovation Center. Her parents are LuAnn Wiseman, stepfather Chris Wiseman and the late J.L. Toney. Commencement_December_2016_050 copy

During her college career, Booth interned with Fahlgren Mortine of Charleston, West Virginia, and the WVU School of Nursing. She was an active member of the WVU PRSSA chapter and served as chapter president during the 2015-2016 academic year.

The College also wants to recognize its students who achieved Latin Honors. In an academic institution, Latin Honors indicates the level of academic distinction with which an academic degree is earned. There are three levels of Latin Honors:

Summa Cum Laude, which means “with highest honor”—a student must have an overall GPA of 3.80 or higher
Magna Cum Laude, which means “with great honor”—a student must have an overall GPA of 3.60 to 3.79
Cum Laude, which means “with honor”—a student must have an overall GPA of 3.40 to 3.59

Three students received summa cum laude including Hannah Booth, Lindsay Terlikowski and Whitney Norris. Magna cum laude recipients include Darian Seese, Merill Tebay and Megan Saporito. Students who received cum laude include Nathaniel Temple, Jaden Hardesty, Maleea Martin, Morgan Mularski, Elena Paige, Angela Sparachane, Natalie Lorenze and Liam Frawley.

Congratulations to all of our December graduates!

More than 2,800 students participated in WVU’s December Commencement ceremony.

20 Dec

The Larry Whiteside Scholarship offers an undergraduate or graduate student the opportunity to attend 2017 NABJ Convention and Career Fair. The scholarship winner will receive an award of $5,000 covering the trip to the 2017 NABJ Convention & Career Fair in New Orleans, LA. Registration, lodging, a round-trip flight and a meals stipend will be provided. He/She will be acknowledged during the Sports Task Force events and required to write a post-convention account of the experience.

Specific Application Requirements:

  • Must major in journalism with an interest in pursuing a career in sports journalism
  • Must be an undergraduate or graduate student with at least one year left in school.
  • G.P.A. requirement: 2.5 or higher in journalism major and at least a 2.0 cumulative
  • Essay topic: “Write a profile essay on a sports journalist (alive or deceased) you admire and explain why this person has inspired you to pursue a career in sports journalism.” (1,000 – 2,000 words)

General Application Requirements:

  • Resume, cover letter, official college transcript, five work samples and three references.

Deadline: March 1, 2017

Larry Whiteside, a pioneer in the field of sports journalism, was the first African-American beat sports writer for The Boston Globe. His achievements earned him many prestigious honors including induction into NABJ’s 2009 Hall of Fame (posthumous); NABJ’s 1999 Lifetime Achievement Award; induction into the 2008 National Baseball Hall of Fame (posthumous); and the 2008 J. G. Taylor Spink Award posthumously given by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. Mr. Whiteside passed away in 2007 due to complications from Parkinson’s disease. NABJ’s Sports Task Force established this scholarship in Mr. Whiteside’s honor to provide financial assistance to journalism students interested in sport journalism.

30 Nov

Each month, the Newseum in Washington, D.C., features the best in virtual reality. This month, the WVU Reed College of Media and the Charleston Gazette-Mail made the top 10.

The 360 video, “West Virginia Flood Recovery,” is featured on Newseum’s Top 10 VR Videos of the Month for November. College of Media Senior Lecturer David Smith and journalism senior Jennifer Gardner of Charleston, West Virginia, shot and produced the video, which was highlighted on

The video gives viewers an immersive look at cleanup efforts following the June 23 floods that devastated parts of southern West Virginia.
Gardner, a former student of Smith’s, was working for the Gazette-Mail as a summer intern when he came to her with the idea of covering the floods using 360 video cameras.

“The 360 video of the flood is powerful because people can understand the damage from a unique perspective,” said Gardner “Viewers can interact with the scenery because they are immersed within it and can explore the flood zones for themselves through their mobile devices.”

The video can be viewed with a phone or computer on Facebook and Youtube, or viewed in a VR headset such as a Google Cardboard or Oculus Rift.

The College of Media has been an early adopter of immersive media technology, incorporating experimental techniques into the curriculum since 2013.
Smith, who has taught two experimental journalism classes at WVU, says being featured in the Newseum shows the College is moving in the right direction when it comes to media and innovation.

“Google, GoPro, Huffington Post, NY Times and National Geographic are all showcased within the Newseum,” said Smith, “Our College and the Charleston Gazette-Mail being featured alongside these names validates our emphasis on new ways of storytelling. Right now viewers see 360 video as a novelty but soon it will be mainstream.”

“West Virginia Flood Recovery” was selected based on a submission process and will be featured in the Newseums’ Top 10 VR Videos through the first part of December.

The Newseum, headquartered in Washington, D.C., promotes, explains and defends free expression and the five freedoms of the First Amendment: religion, speech, press, assembly and petition. The Newseum offers seven levels of interactive exhibits include 15 galleries and 15 theaters. View their video online.

30 Nov

Numbers can tell a story, but they can also be misleading. And as we now know, pre-election polls in the 2016 Presidential Election predicted the wrong outcome with Donald Trump beating Hillary Clinton in the Electoral vote.

Wall Street Journal Data Reporter Paul Overberg shared his insights about the role data played in the historic election in his presentation, “By the Numbers: Data, Journalism and the 2016 Election,” at the College’s Media Innovation Center on November 28. Paul Overberg

Overberg addressed problems in polling, such as outdated data-gathering methods and the “shy voter” phenomenon, in which voters aren’t always truthful about their choices. He also discussed the possible impact of both candidates’ historically high unfavorability ratings leading up to the election.

“There was a lot of trying to figure out this year who was going to show up to vote—no one really knew,” said Overberg. “There has never been an election where both candidates were so underwater in terms of favorability.”

Overberg suggested that the large amount of money spent on polling could be better spent on funding data reporting before and after elections. And he demonstrated how demographic and economic data can be used to better explain what happens in elections and why. For example, through data analysis, he was able to show the connection between immigration patterns and voting in specific regions of the country.

Overberg said data journalism is only going to grow in importance over time, and he encouraged students to take more math classes, learn coding skills and use easy tools that enable journalists to analyze and “interrogate” data, such as Structure Query Language.

“All journalists will have to know how to use data,” he said “If you learn a little bit of data while you’re in school, you’ll be ahead of many professional journalists.

28 Nov

West Virginia University Reed College of Media traveled to Pittsburgh this month to visit two of the city’s largest local agencies: BrunnerWorks and Gatesman+Dave.

This professional opportunity, sponsored by the College’s Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) chapter, allowed 14 strategic communications juniors and seniors to tour agency facilities, speak with upper-level management, engage in professional development and discuss entry-level positions.

At BrunnerWorks, students enjoyed a facilities tour, meeting multiple partners and employees. The group had the opportunity to ask questions and learn about the day-to-day functions of each agency department. agency

BrunnerWorks Vice President and Director of Public Relations Steve Radick says that the agency tours are mutually beneficial and provide a renewed sense of energy at the agency.

“You can always tell when there’s a group of students at the agency that day. There’s more energy, more laughter, more excitement,” said Radick of the WVU tour. “By hosting students, we do more than deepen our recruiting pipeline; we draft off their energy and personalities and learn about ourselves and our jobs. I think we benefit from their presence just as much as they do. I’m looking forward to working with them all in the near future.”

Gatesman+Dave provided the group with an hour-and-a-half conversation with seven different employees, ranging from new hires to senior account managers, to ask questions and learn about the agency experience. Employees were brought in one or two at a time, based on their experience, and had a candid discussion with the group about the ins and outs of agency life. agency1

WVU’s chapter of PRSSA organizes and attends agency visits every semester, along with a variety of other professional development opportunities such as national & regional conferences, peer mentorship programs, community service ventures and published writing opportunities.

To learn more about WVU’s PRSSA chapter, visit, or attend one of the bi-weekly Monday meetings at 5 p.m. in Martin Hall 205.

17 Nov

Law School Information Session

November 17, 2016

The “Law School Information Session” will be held on Tuesday November 29 at 3:30 p.m. in Martin Hall Room 201. We will be hosting Elissa Momen, Assistant Director of Admissions at WVU College of Law, for an information session on applying to law school, career opportunities, and answering questions you may have about the process.

View the attached flyer for additional information.

14 Nov

Starting this month, K-12 students won’t be the only ones receiving a report card. Public schools will be expected to demonstrate progress, according to a new school accountability system launched by the state with the help of students at West Virginia University Reed College of Media.

The College partnered with the West Virginia Department of Education to develop and implement a public awareness campaign for the new grading structure. The A-F School Accountability System measures how well students are learning, growing and achieving in key areas. Based on school rankings, the system will provide resources and support to schools, parents and teachers to increase student performance.

Dr. Geah Pressgrove is leading the capstone course this semester and has previously partnered with the WVDE.

“Our students act as an extension of the WVDE staff providing communication expertise as a trusted partner,”Pressgrove said. “The goal of the A-F school accountability communications campaign is to start a dialogue with parents and community members about supporting their local schools.”

Strategic communications students created the campaign as part of their capstone class. They created a full-scale, integrated marketing communications agency with real positions such as account managers, research directors and media relations strategists.

Senior Kimberly Dutcher of Milroy, Pennsylvania, was the agency’s account executive. She says the hands-on experience has prepared her to join the workforce.

“For many students, this is their first time negotiating media buys, writing communication copy and working off of a real budget,” Dutcher said.”I have prior experience in the communication field. However, after leading a team of nine peers I have more confidence entering the field once I graduate in December.”

Capstone students presented their final campaign to the West Virginia Board of Education in Charleston November 9. The campaign consists of traditional media, public relations and digital media tactics to promote awareness of the new A-F school accountability system.

West Virginia Department of Education Director of Communications Kristin Anderson has worked alongside the strategic communications students this semester and will carry on the campaign through next year.

“The West Virginia Department of Education has been extremely fortunate to partner with the College of Media and work with senior-level students as part of their capstone course,” Anderson said. “The students have become an extension of our communications team and provided strategic ideas that we will continue to implement after the completion of their capstone course.”

Check your school’s grade or learn more about the A-F School Accountability System by visiting

10 Nov

December Graduate Open House

November 10, 2016

On Friday, December 16, graduates from the WVU Reed College of Media will celebrate the culmination of their college careers. The University will hold its December Commencement Ceremony at 1:30 p.m. in the WVU Coliseum.

The College of Media will hold an Open House at the Media Innovation Center from 10-11:30 a.m. The event is an opportunity for students to show their family and friends around the Media Innovation Center and mingle with faculty, staff and mentors.

For additional information see the attached flyer or RSVP online .

7 Nov

Join Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) at WVU for a special viewing of the movie Spotlight on Thursday November 10 at 6 pm in Martin Hall Room 205. Anyone interested in joining SPJ is encouraged to attend. Snacks will be provided.

For additional information see the attached flyer or email SPJ .

3 Nov

Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) and the WVU Reed College of Media are collecting monetary donations and materials to make blankets for West Virginia flood victims and WVU Medicine Children.

Requested supplies:
-Fleece, two or two-and-a-half yards
-Lightly used blankets
-Gift cards to Wal-Mart or craft stores

Donations will be accepted until Dec.1 and can be dropped off at Room 104, Martin Hall.

For more information see the attached flyer or contact Bryanna McCullough.

31 Oct


October 31, 2016

WVU students will host the second annual CreateAthon@WVU event on November 11 at 2 p.m. and end November 12 at 2 p.m. at Martin Hall.

CreateAthon@WVU is a 24-hour creative blitz coordinated by Reed College of Media students in partnership with United Way. The event provides students the opportunity to work with professional mentors and offer free creative services to select 501c(3) nonprofit organizations in Monongalia and Preston Counties. WVU is proud to be a CreateAthon partner and is looking forward to giving back to three nonprofit organizations, including: Preston County Workshop, The Shack Neighborhood House, and Scott’s Run Settlement House.

CreateAthon@WVU offers students the opportunity to develop creative talents and learn to collaborate as well as lead teams and projects, all while gaining experience with real clients. The work that is created by the students can then be used in personal portfolios. For additional information, to view materials created by WVU students at the past CreateAthon@WVU visit .

24 Oct

WVU News won two MarCom Awards for the Spring 2016 semester. The team won a News Program Gold Award for their Newscast “Substance Abuse: A West Virginia Epidemic” and the team received an honorable mention for the newscast “Evolution of Diversity in the Mountain State”.

MarCom Awards is a creative international competition for any individual or company involved in the concept, writing and design of print, visual, audio and web materials and programs. Entries come from corporate marketing and communication departments, advertising agencies, PR firms, design shops, production companies and freelancers. The MarCom competition has grown to perhaps the largest of its kind in the world with about 6,000 entries per year. A look at the winners shows a range in size from individuals to media conglomerates and Fortune 50 companies. The competition is so well thought of in the industry that national public relations organizations, local ad clubs, and local business communicator chapters are entrants.

24 Oct

The WVU Chapter of The Association for Women in Sports Media (AWSM) presents Celina Pompeani host of PensTV on Thursday November 3 at 6 pm in the Media Innovation Center. Pompeani will discuss her work for the Pittsburgh Penguins and how she established herself in the sports industry.

See the attached flyer for additional information.

21 Oct

Wellness Workshop Series

October 21, 2016

Though finding romantic connection is a big part of the college experience, forming and maintaining healthy relationships can often be hard work. Do you feel comfortable asking for what you need from your partner? How do you know if things are moving too fast? How do you move beyond “Netflix and Chill?” And sometimes when relationships end, we find ourselves overwhelmed with intense emotions and feeling unsure of how to move on. As part of the Wellness Workshop Series, The Carruth Center will be offering a free Workshop designed to help students learn to recognize and form healthy relationships, and cope with the hurt of breaking up. The workshop will be on Tuesday, 11/1 from 6:30-7:30 in CPASS Room 101 and is open to all students.

See the attached flyer for additional information.

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