Environmental justice for poor and minority communities featured at National Communication Association convention

PHILADELPHIA — Environmental justice in poor and minority communities, such as the U.S.-Mexico Border region and the city of Philadelphia, took center stage at sessions during the 2016 annual convention of The National Communication Association (NCA) early November. Kathleen de Onis, a doctoral student at Indiana University, said she was motivated to organize the environmental sessions at NCA, because, “it is really important for us to have an engaged community where members can bring in their experience and their knowledge to share their struggles and their successes.” Students from several universities, including speech and multimedia journalism majors from the University of Texas El Paso, provided presentations at the Building Bridges/Construyendo Puentes sessions on how some underrepresented communities face a variety of environmental justice challenges, from air contamination to soil toxicity and damage from floods. In addition to the UTEP undergraduate students, several doctoral students from the The University of Colorado at Boulder (UCB) and Indiana University (IU) also participated.  

The students shared the stage with local environmental experts from Philadelphia.

Borderzine director Zita Arocha inducted into NAHJ Hall of Fame

By Rene Delgadillo, UTEP Prospector
UTEP Associate Professor of Practice Zita Arocha was inducted to the NAHJ 2016 Hall of Fame on Friday, Aug. 5, for her journalism career and for serving Hispanic and Latino students. “I think it is a huge honor for UTEP because it really focuses attention on what we’ve done there over the last 14 years, and by that I’m talking about the whole team in our department,” Arocha said. “I feel really blessed and privileged to have had the opportunity to spend 14 years for preparing the next generation of bilingual, bicultural journalists. At the ceremony Arocha said, “ if you don’t know about UTEP, it’s scrappy little school on the border, we kick butt, we really do.”
Arocha, a former NAHJ executive director and current director of multimedia web magazine borderzine.flywheelsites.com, said her students give her the strength to continue each day.

Periodistas amenazados frecuentemente en Veracruz

Desde la ocasión en la que paso dos días en la sierra con un grupo de autodefensas indígenas, hasta cuando entrevistó a un joven completamente drogado que ahorcó y destripó a su novia para luego dormir con ella, Sergio Aldazaba ha tenido que cubrir historias que no cualquier periodista ha tenido la oportunidad de vivir. “Cada caso te va marcando y si sabes sacar lo mejor de cada situación, te ayuda a crecer como periodista y como ser humano”, dijo el periodista veracruzano en una reciente entrevista. Aldazaba, de 28 años, se gana la vida escribiendo sobre la nota roja y política para periódicos y sitios en linea. Al estar cubriendo temas tan sensibles en el estado de Veracruz, el joven periodista dice que está en constante peligro de un atentado contra su vida. “Se los riesgos que todo esto conlleva, pero alguien tiene que hacer el trabajo sucio y hasta cierto punto te puedo decir que se vuelve un tanto adictivo cubrir todo este tipo de historias”

A pesar de esto, nada lo preparó para cubrir la muerte de tres compañeros periodistas a causa de la corrupción del sistema de gobierno en Mexico.

Q & A with journalist Molly Sinclair McCartney on her book, ‘America’s War Machine’

Former Washington Post reporter Molly Sinclair McCartney visited UTEP recently to discuss in detail “America’s War Machine: Vested Interests, Endless Conflicts,” the the book she co-authored with her journalist husband. The book is an in-depth exploration of United States interventions in the Middle East and the growing power of this country’s military establishment. Originally begun by her late husband, the respected D.C. journalist James McCartney, and completed by Sinclair, it is a culmination of several years of research about the influence and growth of a war industry that includes the U.S. military, Department of Defense and Pentagon. Related: Writer examines ‘America’s War Machine’

She sat down recently with students and faculty at the Sam Donaldson Center in the Department of Communication to discuss how she researched the issues raised by the book, published by St. Martin’s Press last fall.

Writer examines ‘America’s War Machine’

When veteran Washington, DC political journalist James McCartney passed away suddenly in May of 2011 from an aggressive form of cancer he left behind an unfinished manuscript about his decades-long reporting on the U.S. Military establishment. After his death, several friends approached his widow, former Washington Post journalist Molly Sinclair McCartney, and asked what would happen to the half-completed manuscript on Jim’s desk at their Florida retirement home. Related: Q & A with journalist Molly Sinclair McCartney on her book, ‘America’s War Machine’

“I don’t know,” Sinclair replied. Several suggested she take up where McCartney had left off and finish the book. So she did.

El Paso Dow Jones Multimedia Training Academy 2016 participants selected

Sixteen journalism instructors from Hispanic Serving Institutions and Historically Black Colleges and Universities have been selected to participate in the seventh annual Dow Jones News Fund Multimedia Training Academy in late May at the University of Texas in El Paso.  Thanks to a grant provided by the Dow Jones News Fund, Borderzine organizes this seventh annual workshop training geared to multimedia journalism instructors who teach in institutions with a large minority population.  Here is a list of the 16 chosen instructors and their institutions:
Eilene Wollslager, Our Lady of the Lake Texas
Sissel McCarthy, Hunter College
Myna German, Delaware State University
Cleo Allen, Dillard University
Stacey Patton, Morgan State University
Karima Haynes, Bowie State University
Benjamin Davis, California State University Northridge
Alice Stephens, Clark-Atlanta University
Gwyneth Doland, University of New Mexico
Michael DiBari, Hampton University
Bonnie Stewart, California State University Fullerton
Sheryl Kennedy Haydel, Xavier University of Louisiana
Stu VanAirsdale, Sacramento State University
Jenny Moore, Texas A&M San Antonio
Indira Somani, Howard University
Hugo Perez, New Mexico State University
This intense multimedia-journalism academy has a proven track record of six successful years helping journalism educators acquire a new skill set in multimedia production. “The trainers at the academy understand what educators need to learn about new and emerging technologies to better prepare their students for the fast-changing future” said Linda Shockley, Managing Director of Dow Jones News Fund. “This quality of instruction at absolutely no cost to participants and their universities is priceless.”
The goal of this experience is to learn and practice new storytelling skills through the use of current technology.

Borderzine Director Zita Arocha named to National Association of Hispanic Journalists Hall of Fame

The  National Association of Hispanic Journalists this week named Borderzine founder and director Zita Arocha a 2016 Hall of Fame inductee for making a difference for Latinos in the newsroom. Arocha, an associate professor of practice teaching journalism at UT El Paso, is former executive director of NAHJ. “Zita has been the soul of NAHJ and continues to be a beacon for diversity and journalism,” said Mekahlo Medina, NAHJ President. “Zita not only helped lead NAHJ in its early days, but she has been committed to training and developing hundreds, if not thousands, of Latino journalists. She has been a leader in journalism on the border, developing a platform for stories that are uniquely situated for the region and necessary for the country and world.”

This year, the NAHJ board of directors voted to induct four individuals, one posthumously.

La reunión de la Asociación Nacional de Periodistas Hispanos fue oro puro para la nueva generación de periodistas

EL PASO – Hace un poco más de una semana, se presentó aqui una reunión de periodistas hispanos en la Universidad de Texas en el Paso (UTEP) — la segunda conferencia de la Asociación Nacional de Periodistas Hispanos (NAHJ). La reunion congregó a una amplia gama de reporteros, productores y editores de la ciudad y el resto del país para abordar temas de interés a la comunidad hispana. Estas reuniones simplemente valen oro. No solo por las oportunidades de obtener adiestramiento adicional, o por el ‘networking’ como le llaman mis colegas más jóvenes dentro de los medios, sino por el simple hecho de poder observar y escuchar las historias que los colegas más experimentados platican. Sus historias sobre como comenzaron en los medios, las veces que tropezaron y se levantaron y las lecciones que tuvieron que aprender a las malas.

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Oldest Spanish newspaper in the U.S. struggles to stay afloat and relevant

Article reprinted courtesy of VoicesOfNY.org

As the country’s oldest Spanish-language newspaper implodes, the story of its debacle keeps on adding pages. On Jan. 15, another round of layoffs, the third in less than two years, hit the already decimated staff of New York’s El Diario/La Prensa and left jobless 13 of the last 35 people still working there. The newsroom was hit the hardest, swallowing six of those losses. “The mood here at the paper isn’t somber, because there’s not even enough people to feel somber anymore,” said Óscar Hernández, salesman and union representative at El Diario.