Category Archives: Students

 
Journalism and non-journalism students at Michigan State University explore how to better report environmental issues to the public at the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism.
 

Environmental journalism courses can help students meet the School of Journalism’s elective requirements. They can also be used as part of an environmental theme to complete the school’s concentration requirement by combining them with environment-related courses outside the journalism program. See your academic adviser or contact the Knight Center.
 
Non-journalism students interested in environmental issues are encouraged to contact instructors to discuss waiver of pre-requisites. Often a journalism environmental course may meet communication course requirements of other departments.
 

 
Undergraduates are also encouraged to join the student Environmental Journalism Association and write for Great Lakes Echo to gain resume-building experience and clips.
 
Undergraduate students are eligible for several awards and scholarships in environmental journalism.
 
They are encouraged to augment their study with environment classes and programs elsewhere at MSU such as the Residential Initiative on the Study of the Environment.
 
 

Tremaine Phillips: Michigan Public Service Commissioner talks alternative energy, vulnerable communities 

By Rachel Duckett

Tremaine Phillips

In 2019, Michigan State University alum Tremaine Phillips was appointed to the three-member Public Service Commission, making him one of the country’s public service commissioners at 33 years old.

The PSC’s mission is to “serve the public by ensuring safe, reliable and accessible energy and telecommunications services at reasonable rates.”

That includes regulation of landlines, cable television and energy infrastructure. While it’s not an environmental agency, the commission oversees clean energy operations and sometimes assesses the environmental impact of existing infrastructure in its decision-making.

I spoke with him about alternative energy, protecting communities and more. Here’s our conversation, lightly edited:

What have you learned since being appointed to the commission in 2019?

I thought I knew a lot coming into this job, but it’s just made me learn and appreciate the complexity and the amount of devotion and commitment it takes to sustain all this good stuff we have going. So I never take for granted the light switch when I turn it on. Reliable energy is not a guarantee for many people across the world.

I think of the complexity and how many thousands and tens of thousands of people are waking up every day to make sure the system is safe and reliable. Continue reading

Ph.D. funded opportunity in inclusive science communication project

The Knight Center invites applications for a Ph.D. position in the NSF-funded project Intercultural Science Communication Research and Training to Broaden Participation Among Historically Minoritized Science Practitioners. BIPOC are strongly encouraged to apply.

The project, in collaboration with the University of Rhode Island’s Metcalf Institute, will address the lack of BIPOC representation in science communication training spaces and among trainers using an intercultural communication perspective. The project will include the development and testing of a new science communication training, the Science Communication Research Fellowship (SCARF). We are looking to fund a student interested in inclusive science communication beginning August 2022.

The successful applicant would have to apply to the Information & Media doctoral program in the College of Communication Arts and Sciences at Michigan State University. The application deadline is December 1st, 2021.

The position is suited for students from historically minoritized groups, have recently completed or near completing an MA in Journalism/Communication or related fields (media studies, environmental studies, sociology), with experience of working with relevant methods, and with relevant professional and/or personal experience. The ideal candidate would have some professional journalism or communication experience, including basic writing, reporting, multimedia skills, strategic communication, and /or public relations.

Required Qualifications:

  1. Education: M.A. in Journalism/Communication or related fields
  2. Basic knowledge of qualitative and/or quantitative communication research methods, including interviews, surveys and/or content analysis
  3. Excellent written, editing, and verbal communication skills
  4. Relevant experience working with historically marginalized populations

For more information, please contact Dr. Bruno Takahashi at btakahas@msu.edu

Bruno Takahashi, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Research Director
Knight Center for Environmental Journalism
College of Communication Arts and Sciences
Michigan State University

Environmental journalism student finishes Detroit Public TV internship

By Rachel Duckett

Rachel Duckett

This summer, I worked as an intern at Great Lakes Now, an environmental journalism initiative through PBS and Detroit Public Television covering news around the Great Lakes.

I’m a senior at MSU, and until this internship I didn’t know that environmental journalism was an option for me. Now, I feel like I have a better sense of where I want to go with my degree and a bit more experience to help me get there.

It was really rewarding covering environmental news, I got the opportunity to talk to scientists, as well as people in my community for stories that I felt proud of.

I also got to pitch my own story ideas, like this article I wrote about lighthouses.

I got to practice everything I’d learned in my classes so far and I can’t wait to learn more in my environmental journalism courses this year.

The Knight Center for Environmental Journalism underwrote Druckett’s internship.