After 60 Journalists and 80 GW Interns Work with 4,000 Urban Students, Prime Movers Media Sunsets at the End of May
The Prime Movers Media program at GW’s School of Media and Public Affairs is sunsetting after nine successful school years. The nation’s first intensive journalism mentoring and news literacy program targeting students within urban high schools, the program was established for its first three years with a grant from the Knight Foundation and supported in more recent years by a contract with the D.C. Public Schools. Financial support from George Washington University and the School of Media and Public Affairs, along with news organizations, individuals and smaller foundations has provided supplemental funding for the program. The completion of this year’s contract with the D.C. Public School system (D.C.P.S.) left too large a gap without new sources of funding to sustain the program. Without new funding, it has become difficult to sustain and administer the Prime Movers program so the program will close at the end of this academic year.
Prime Movers Media has brought 80 interns from the George Washington University together with 60 professional journalists to train more than 4,000 students in 28 schools in the Washington area. Along with the White House Correspondents’ Association and AOL, Prime Movers Media has facilitated college scholarships for students to study journalism and mass communications.
Prime Movers Media has touched many lives and will continue to leave its imprint on the careers of many GW and D.C.P.S. students. “GW has been a wonderful partner in bringing Prime Movers Media to the Washington community and I am grateful to the university for its support,” said Dorothy Gilliam, the program’s founder and director.
The program’s legacy will continue as D.C. students study a mass media/journalism education curriculum Prime Movers wrote for D.C. Public Schools. An “Articulation Agreement” between GW and D.C.P.S. will allows students who complete the curriculum to gain three credits if they enroll at GW.
“What Dorothy Gilliam and her program has brought to GW and the greater Washington D.C. education community have been highly valued and will be sorely missed,” said Frank Sesno, director of GW’s School of Media and Public Affairs. “Her vision and dedication has touched the lives of thousands of students and we are grateful to her and to her team for everything they have done.”
If you have questions or comments before May 30, please contact Dorothy Gilliam at firstname.lastname@example.org
They are awe-filled but not dazed by the world around them. They want to produce objective and unbiased reporting that documents their total community. All they need is an opportunity to learn how to use the tools and techniques.
These are the students of Prime Movers Media. Here are their projects and personal insights.
Don Hecker works with Ellington HS student.
(by: Saudia Staten)
Intern Nicole Capo helps a student edit a photo.
(by: Saudia Staten)
Sylvia Moreno meets with Banneker High students’ newspaper club.
(by: Saudia Staten)
President Obama Congratulates PMM Student Brianna Little at WHCA Annual Dinner
An emotional Brianna Little of Benjamin Banneker Academic High School met President Obama at the White House Correspondents' Dinner this past weekend. Brianna, the editor-in-chief of her school newspaper, was chosen by Prime Movers Media to receive the White House Correspondents' Digital Scholarship. Photo Credit: Daniel P. Swartz
PRIME MOVERS MEDIA PARTNERS WITH WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENTS' ASSOCIATION, AOL, TO AWARD SCHOLARSHIPS
Photo Credit: Daniel P. Swartz
WHCA, AOL Donate $30,000 to Scholarships for DC High School Journalists
WASHINGTON, D.C., APRIL 8, 2013 - The George Washington University's Prime Movers Media (PMM) program, Washington, DC's only intensive high school journalism mentoring program, is partnering with the White House Correspondents' Association (WHCA) and AOL to recognize outstanding DC high school journalism students.
WHCA and AOL will each give two high school seniors $15,000 scholarships to study mass media at the colleges of their choice. Representatives from PMM, WHCA and AOL judged the contest, which was based on applicants’ essays, participation in PMM programs and financial need.
Jabriel Ingram of Coolidge is the recipient of the WHCA scholarship and Brianna Little of Banneker will receive the AOL scholarship. The scholarships will be presented at the annual White House Correspondents’ dinner on April 27.
"We are delighted to be able to support a program that has already mentored thousands of budding journalists in the DC area (and Philadelphia)," said Michael Scherer, TIME magazine White House correspondent and chair of the WHCA Scholarship Committee. "This is precisely the sort of work the White House Correspondents' Association was founded to support."
Based at The George Washington University's School of Media and Public Affairs, PMM sends veteran journalists and GW students to mentor high school students and assist teachers, while revitalizing their media programs in television, radio, print and digital/online production. PMM has active programs in eight high schools in Washington, DC to promote ongoing journalism training and diversity among young journalists. PMM wrote the Mass Media Communications curriculum that is currently being used in three DC high schools. Since its inception in 2004, PMM http://www.gwu.edu/~primemovers has sent 83 George Washington University students into DC high schools. During that time, more than 100 professional journalists have worked with 4,000 high school students in greater Washington, DC, and Philadelphia.
"We are happy to have the support of this prestigious organization of the nation's top journalists," said Dorothy Gilliam, director of Prime Movers Media, an industry pioneer and former president of the National Association of Black Journalists. "The involvement of this association is exciting for our students. It will contribute to our goals of revitalizing media programs, mentoring future journalists and advancing media literacy and civic engagement of youth in urban and diverse high schools."
The School of Media and Public Affairs (SMPA) is dedicated to the rigorous study of journalism and political communication with a focus on understanding the impact media have on how societies inform and govern, connect and communicate. As media undergo transformational change, SMPA's goal is to advance both theoretical insight and innovative practice. SMPA conducts groundbreaking research, offers inspiring teaching, encourages hands-on work in the field and in our production facilities and engages directly with thought-leaders in Washington, DC, and around the world.
Former Deputy Managing Editor of The Washington Post, Milton Coleman Speaks to Prime Movers Media Interns
Photo courtesy of waronthehorizon.com
Milton Coleman, contributing editor at The Washington Post, spoke to Prime Movers Media interns at GW about careers in journalism during the age of social media.
Journalism students must “perfect their craft and learn to do it well” so they can format it to any medium, such as blogs, twitter and Facebook. He urged the college students to learn how to write a short story “so it can be easily understood.”
He also warned the young journalists to be cautious in their approach to the news: “We don’t know as much as we think and what we know is not as important as we think.” In this age of everyone trying to disseminate the news first, Coleman stressed that journalists must have a strong concern for the truth and continuously ask themselves: “What do I know that I can publish?”
Coleman, who joined the Post in 1976 as a reporter on the Metropolitan staff, rose to become City Editor, Assistant Managing Editor of Metropolitan News, Deputy Managing Editor and Senior Editor.
Since he began his career, Coleman has been committed to diversity in the newsroom. He said the media has not been successful in representing the melting pot of readers. Diversity is important because it helps journalists write with authority about where people live, what is happening in their lives and what they think about it, he said.
“If you don’t represent all views, it is bad business,” Coleman said, explaining that you will miss readers if you fail to develop relationships with people in their communities and do not report the news occurring there. “You need to be aware of what’s important in the community to reach them.”
Prime Movers Media Holds WHCA Panels for Eastern SHS and Wilson HS Students
Prime Movers Media and the White House Correspondents’ Association (WHCA) recently partnered to sponsor some of the nation’s premier journalists on panels at two D.C. high schools.
On March 5, more than 100 history, government and mass media students at Wilson High School attended a question and answer session with five WHCA journalists. The journalists were: Yasmeen Alamiri of WJLA –TV Channel 7; Robert Levinson of Bloomberg Government, Ryan Lizza of The New Yorker, Maria Pena of Efe News Service; and Jodi Schneider of Bloomberg News.
At Eastern Senior High School, a week later, another panel of WHCA journalists spoke to a group of freshmen and sophomore mass media students. The panelists included Ching-Yi Chang of Phoenix- TV; Louis Jacobson of Politifact, a fact-checking website of the Tampa Bay Times; Ryan Lizza of The New Yorker; Darlene Superville of the Associated Press; and Tiffany Tate of BET Networks.
The students’ questions covered topics ranging from immigration to defense spending and coverage of Osama Bin Laden’s death to time management and how the reporters balance their personal and professional lives. The next WHCA panel will be during Prime Movers Medias’ year-end Media Showcase event on Thursday, May 9, 2013.
NBC4 Washington Morning News Anchor Visits Ballou High School
LEFT News4 Washington Anchor Aaron Gilchrist talks to Ballou students. RIGHT A student cameraman shoots Gilchrist
Photos by Yolanda Woodlee
Aaron Gilchrist, the weekday morning co-anchor of NBC4 Washington, spoke to mass media students at Ballou High school about how his career began, why he loves his job and how they can become broadcast journalists.
Gilchrist, of Richmond, Va., encouraged the students to read, read, read newspapers, novels, biographies; to get mentors and advice from speech teachers. He said he was very nervous the first time he was in front of a camera; however, he decided that was the career path he wanted to pursue.
Television reporters don’t have a lot of time to tell their stories, Gilchrist explained.
“You want to get the most important information and you want it to be as clear and concise as possible,” he said. “Accuracy is everything.”
Gilchrist added: “The reality of the world is the news is not always good... it’s a luxury when you can get a laugh.”
He got a laugh from the students when their teacher, Arnelle Hughes, gave him a verbal high-five because they both graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Prime Movers Media Students Participate in Forum on First Amendment
Prime Movers Media students representing four DC public schools were among 90 participants in a recent forum on the First Amendment at The Washington Post. The forum was sponsored by the DC area Journalism Education Association and The Washington Post’s Newspaper in Education (NIE) program.
The featured speaker was Mary Beth Tinker whose silent protest of the Vietnam War when she was a 13-year-old junior high school student in Iowa led to the landmark Tinker vs. Des Moines Independent Community School District in 1969. She described in riveting details how seeing soldiers die on the television news affected her as a young teen. She and her brother, John, wore black armbands to school in a silent protest. They were suspended and their father lost his job for supporting them.
The publicity led the American Civil Liberties Union to step in and the suit against the school district eventually went all the way to the Supreme Court. The Court ruled that students had First Amendment rights and the school district was wrong to punish their expression of opinion.
A later ruling, referred to as Hazelwood, found that students do not have the right to disruptive expressions of opinion. Since the definition of disruptive is not closely defined, this ruling weakened students' First Amendment rights.
PMM Receives Grants to Equip Mass Media Classrooms
Wilson High School Mass Media teacher Kadesha Bonds opens new equipment with one of her students.
Photo by Yolanda Woodlee
Thanks to our financial partners for the 2012-13 school year. Your generosity helps update mass media classes with high-tech equipment used to teach media literacy and improve the writing, public speaking and technological skills of students in DC public and charter high schools.
The Gannett Foundation donated $10,000 to PMM for equipment for the students and an external program evaluation. The grant was used to purchase cameras, headphones, tripods and speakers and other high-tech equipment for Anacostia, Ballou, Banneker, Coolidge, McKinley Tech and Wilson high schools.
“The program is the nation's first program targeting urban schools. The work being done in this program aligns with Gannett's commitment to diversity and to journalism, which we believe are critical for our democracy,” said Virgil L. Smith, Vice President/ Talent Acquisition and Diversity.
Kadesha Bonds, who teaches mass media at Wilson High School said the equipment is an added value to her classroom.
"This is very important because you can not teach today’s mass media without today’s technology, which is cameras and video cameras,” she said . “We definitely need this equipment and we will use it in our upcoming audio projects.”
The American Society of News Editors (ASNE) donated $4,000 to fund the purchase of equipment for mass media programs at Eastern Senior High School
and Richard Wright Public Charter School
. The equipment includes computer software, cameras, tripods and a video camera.
PMM Dedicates Journalism Lab at Eastern High School in Honor of Journalist
Dorothy Gilliam, director of Prime Movers Media, (far right) looks at 1946 Eastern High School yearbook with Barbara Plummer, far left, Nancy Hoffer and Eastern Principal Rachel Skerritt (front). Photo by Saudia Staten
Prime Movers Media established a new journalism lab at Eastern Senior high School
in honor of the late Elsie Carper, a trailblazing reporter, editor and news administrator at The Washington Post.
The Elsie Carper Charitable Fund contributed $35,000 to Prime Movers Media for journalism and media literacy mentoring at DC high schools.
Eastern received a $10,000 grant to provide updated equipment for the mass media center, “The Elsie Carper Journalism Lab.” A plaque in memoriam of Ms. Carper is displayed in the classroom, which hosts computers and other high-tech media equipment.
Eastern is one of the eight high schools where PMM sends professional journalists and interns from The George Washington University School of Media and Public Affairs to work with the students. PMM worked with Eastern to revive its mass media program, even assisting the administration in its search for a journalism teacher.
Ms. Carper graduated from Eastern High School
in 1937, and received a scholarship to GWU, where she received her bachelor’s degree.
After graduation, Ms. Carper worked at the Post for 48 years. She was one of the first reporters on a major metropolitan newspaper to write about the then segregated black schools in the nation’s capital. She was promoted to edit the Post’s “Style” section and transformed its coverage of society news and women’s features to more serious community issues. As the Post’s assistant managing editor for news administration, she encouraged the hiring of more women and African Americans.
“The dedication of the Elsie Carper Journalism Lab is a fitting honor for a legendary newspaper journalism pioneer who devoted much of her storied career to diversifying The Washington Post newsroom, as well as the kinds of news it covered,” Leonard Downie Jr., vice president at large of The Washington Post, said in a written statement. “Elsie’s unwavering dedication to journalistic excellence and diversity, her unquestioned integrity, her steely toughness and her sly, ice-breaking humor combined to make her a figure of great influence during her half century at The Washington Post.”
Three DCPS CTE Schools Launch College Prep Mass Media Curriculum written by PMM
This school year, three DC public high schools – Ballou, Wilson and McKinley Tech – will use the new “Curriculum for Mass Media,” a college-prep program developed by Prime Movers Media under a contract with the DCPS Career and Technical Education (CTE) Department.
The curriculum requires the participating schools to offer four courses that may be taken in an intensive way in one semester or one each year, depending on the individual school’s scheduling. The courses are “Introduction to Mass Media,” “Genres of News and Audio Production,” “Video Production and Broadcast Journalism,” and “Multimedia Writing and Reporting.”
Upon completion of the courses, the students who have earned the required grade point average and meet the admission standards of George Washington University may be eligible for three college credits.
Mass Media teachers Arnelle Hughes of Ballou; Kadesha Bonds of Wilson; and Judy Moore and Kobi Colston of McKinley Tech are instructing the courses.
“I love the curriculum,” said Ms. Hughes at PMM’s kick-off event. “It’s really helpful having a plan to follow.”
The 125-page curriculum has a 13-item appendix that includes a summary of AP Style. It was compiled by PMM’s DC Area Manager Lois Page, an eight-year PMM veteran and a retired English and media teacher; with technical advice from Carol Knopes, a former PMM consultant and veteran journalist.
The curriculum and the standards underlying it involved consultation with Iris Wilson, CTE program specialist, and CTE instructors Judy Moore of McKinley Tech and Michael Spikes, formerly of Roosevelt High School; and former CTE instructor J.D. DiMattio of Ballou High School.
GWU Interns, Professional Journalists Off to DC High Schools for PMM's 9th Year
PMM Intern Jennifer Krems works with a student at Richard Wright Public Charter School. Photo by Saudia Staten
In the rapidly changing world of journalism, PMM students at Ballou High School are taking it a step farther and smarter. They’re ditching the traditional notebooks and pens for their high-tech smart phones to do interviews. Using the lens of their cell phones, the students will create unique stories exploring what their identity says about them. The students will conduct video interviews with friends, family and strangers to get a clear picture of how others perceive them. They will ask questions such as “When you look at me, ‘what does my leopard-colored top’ or ‘my long locked hair’ say about me?” The project is under the direction of Ballou HS teacher Arnelle Hughes, PMM professional journalist Hamil Harris of The Washington Post, GWU professor Kerric Harvey and PMM program manager Saudia Staten.
Other DCPS and charter schools participating in PMM this year are also honing their interviewing and news writing skills, as well as working on digital editing and newspaper design.
Anacostia H.S. media students are preparing to do a video project to air during Black History Month in February. PMM will work with the students of Anacostia and Friendship News Network, under the direction of teacher Marilyn Kaufman, as they write and produce the project.
Banneker Academic H.S. has a new newspaper club adviser, Harriet Frost, who will work with the school’s newspaper, Train of Thought. Longtime professional mentor Sylvia Moreno, formerly of The Washington Post, is assisting Ms. Frost as the students prepare to publish their first newspaper with stories on Hispanic Heritage Month and neighboring Howard University’s homecoming.
Eastern H.S. is reviving its journalism tradition and has a new but veteran adviser, Kevin Bjerregaard, who will teach two journalism classes and lead the after-school newspaper club. Journalist David Michaels of The Dallas Morning News will be working with the newspaper club. SMPA interns, sophomore Malika Searcy of McDonough, Ga., and freshman Allison Kowalski of Shrewsbury, N.J., are advising the students who are preparing for their first edition.
Students in the newspaper club at Coolidge H.S. are interviewing teachers, classmates and athletes as they prepare to write stories for their first print edition. SMPA intern junior Christina Oriel from Los Angeles, Ca., is working with afterschool newspaper club advisers, English teachers Elizabeth Collins and Clare Berke, and professional journalist Yolanda Woodlee, formerly of The Washington Post and now a PMM program consultant.
Mass Media students at McKinley Technical H.S. are continuing to produce projects using digital editing. They recently held a Mass Media Showcase to recognize outstanding student videos. Mass Media student Dayna Hayman was awarded “Outstanding Editor” for the 2011-12 school year for her excellence in digital editing. Dayna said she learned a lot about lighting from PMM professional Victor Blandburg, a freelance photographer. Mass Media teacher Judy Moore has invited PMM’s Yolanda Woodlee to speak to students this year on the importance of good writing skills in every aspect of media work.
Wilson H.S., a DCPS Career and Technical Education school for Mass Communications, has a new Mass Media teacher, Kadesha Bonds. A veteran Prime Mover instructor, Ms. Bonds is working with PMM professional Victor Blandburg and SMPA interns, senior Kathryn Ross of New York, N.Y. and sophomore Mary Ellen McIntire of Londonderry, N.H. The interns recently advised the students on their Power Point presentations on advertising and branding.
The media students at Richard Wright Public Charter School, a journalism-focused high school, are gathering story ideas for their first newspaper edition this year with their teacher, Nargis Fontaine. PMM professional David Francis of the Christian Science Monitor and SMPA interns, sophomore Enitan Aigbomian of Willow Grove, Pa. and senior Jennifer Krems of Newton, Mass., are coaching the students.
And the Winners of the Jack Donaldson Scholarship Are...
Congratulations to our two Jack Donaldson Memorial Scholarship and Internship winners:
Angel Brock of McKinley Technology High School won the $24,200 scholarship.
Shante Nia Hayes of Chapelgate Christian Academy won the summer paid
internship at Atlantic Media.
The Scholarship and Internship are given by the White House Correspondents’ Association
. Angel and Shante were congratulated by President and Mrs. Obama April 29 at the WHCA’s Annual Dinner, which was attended by more than 2,500 people including journalists, Washington insiders and entertainment figures.
Students Take Center Stage at the End-of-School-Year Showcase
Approximately 100 D.C. students showed off their best class work at the 8th Annual Prime Movers Media Student Showcase and Awards celebration, on May 9, at George Washington University’s School of Media and Public Affairs.
The day started with a discussion of Presidential campaign ads with members of the White House Correspondents’ Association: Ed Henry of Fox News, Carol Lee of the Wall Street Journal, Bill Press of The Bill Press Show (syndicated talk radio) and Jared Rizzi, POTUS Channel on Sirius XM Radio
After lunch, our DCPS students showed off their student-produced media productions and received recognition for outstanding work during the 2011-2012 school year. Emcee for the Showcase was Maureen Bunyan of WJLA-TV. Student co-hosts were Gaia Lawrence of Ballou High School and Ky’lend Adams of Duke Ellington School of the Arts.
Washington Post and Duke Ellington HS Push 'Fast Forward'
Thanks to Jaye Linnen of the Washington Post’s Young Journalists Development Project for partnering with us to offer, Fast Forward, an eight-week journalism program, Jan. 24-March 15, tailored to media students from Duke Ellington School of the Arts. On Tuesdays from Jan. 24 to March 15, approximately 20 Ellington sophomores and juniors and their teacher, Koye Oyedeji, travelled to the Post to meet professional journalists and discuss news and feature writing, editing, interviewing and video journalism.
‘The New Ballou’ Gets One Hour Special on WJLA/News Channel 8
Congratulations to our Prime Movers Media students at Ballou High School for their hour-long video magazine news show, The New Ballou
, which will be broadcast this week and next on WJLA/News Channel 8.
It’s an upbeat look at the students of Ballou with students shooting video, writing scripts, editing and anchoring eight short reports – from a school visit by First Lady Michelle Obama to the ins and outs of being part of the fabulous Ballou Marching Knights Band.
WJLA Reporter Sam Ford and Videographer Pege Gilgannon have worked on and off for seven years with Ballou students through our program. This video report by Ballou media students, under the direction of then-adviser J.D. DiMattio, is a result of Sam and Pege’s most recent Prime Movers Media collaboration.
In a short segment about their work at the school, Sam says “Prime Movers has been a lot of work for us but also a lot of fun.” Pege says. “I’ve been so happy with the experience of Prime Movers. They’ve helped us teach kids, and the kids in turn have taught us. … We’ve become part of the Ballou family, and it’s been wonderful.”
Richard Wright Students See a Newsroom in Action
We are so pleased that our newest partner, Thomson Reuters, has jumped right into our program to begin working with our students. On December 20, eighth and ninth graders from Richard Wright Public Charter School visited the Thomson Reuters Washington bureau to learn how a newsroom operates.
During a lunch after the tour, students had Q&A sessions with Washington Bureau Chief Mary Milliken, Political Editor Alistair Bell and White House Correspondent Caren Bohan.
“Prime Movers Media is doing very important work and we are very much looking forward to helping in that effort,” said Rob Doherty, Reuters’s general manager for the United States
Photo by Saudia Staten