For all those folks out there who worry about the future of journalism, Laura Frank of the Denver-based I-News Network has a message:
“Meet the high school students who attended the I-News 2011 Investigative Journalism Institute,” said Frank, executive director of the I-News Network, a founding member of INN. “The future of journalism is in good hands.”
Helping train the next generation of investigative reporters is not only part of I-News’ mission, she said, it’s also a revenue stream.
I-News charged $1,000 – room and board, included – for the week-long institute, held on the University of Denver campus last month. Five scholarships were underwritten by a local philanthropy, the Brett Family Foundation in Boulder, Co. Canon sponsored the multimedia segment of the camp.
The whole institute was designed as a working newsroom. These young journalists had to think like investigative reporters, figure out how to root out the deeper story, handle touchy situations, find key information and judge its veracity, analyze relevant data, conduct interviews and turn it all into a multimedia story package of hard-hitting writing and compelling video journalism.
And they wanted more: “I don’t want to leave!” one student told the I-News team at the end. Added her dorm-roommate: “Make it longer because it was really fun and I would love to learn more!”
“It was such a great experience,” one student said. “I truly feel like I am a much better journalist and I will use everything I have learned.”
After a successful inaugural institute, I-News is getting ready for next year.
Learn more about the I-News Investigative Journalism Camp at www.inewsnetwork.org