Former Knight Center doctoral researcher Tony Van Witsen will begin teaching next week as a full time visiting faculty member at Alma College, a small liberal arts school in Alma, Michigan. He will be teaching two undergraduate courses, Research Methods and Relational Communication, which will mostly encompass the relationship between science and policy. Tony entered the I & M program in August of 2014 and successfully defended his dissertation this past May. His research examines news coverage of environmental controversies and complex scientific issues, particularly the ways journalists make sense of statistics.
Knight Center director Eric Freedman and senior associate director Dave Poulson represented MSU at the recent annual conference of the Society of Environmental Journalists in Fort Collins, Colorado. At the conference Poulson finished his second three-year term as the academic representative on the SEJ’s board of directors.
The MSU team included, in alphabetical order:
- Alaska fisheries and environmental reporter Margie Bauman, a Journalism School alum who visits the Knight Center each fall to speak to our classes and network with our EJ students.
- Environmental Health News senior editor Brian Bienkowski, a Knight Center master’s alum.
- Detroit Public TV news director Natasha Blakely, a former Great Lakes Echo staff writer,
- EJ master’s student Andrew Blok, a staff writer for Great Lakes Echo.
- Audubon magazine associate editor Andy McGlashen, a Knight Center master’s alum.
The SEJ conference, “Headwaters to the Plains: Where Rivers, and Politics, Change Directions,” took place October 9-13 at Colorado State University.
By David Poulson
The journey of a recent story with roots in Michigan State University’s Knight Center for Environmental Journalism shows how journalism schools play important news roles.
Nowadays. students, alumni and university-based news networks aren’t only about education. They play a direct role in the rise of public service, nonprofit news reporting. There are stories — like the one I’m about to tell you — that wouldn’t be reported or have the same impact without these university connections. Continue reading