Journalism at GRCC

Why take journalism at GRCC? Why not wait until I attend a university?

The Collegiate offers students practical, real-life journalism experiences in their first and second years of college. Such opportunities for freshmen are much harder to find at universities. Then, after working for the GRCC Collegiate for a year or two and building a portfolio of published work, stepping into positions at universities will be much more possible.

Journalism is Changing

Journalism is changing, but if you’re interested in it as a career those changes only mean you need to know more, not less. You need to learn journalism’s basics of reporting, writing, and editing. You need to know print; you need to know website production using photography, audio, and video. And, most important, you must get your work regularly published.

Former GRCC journalism students go on to excellent jobs at newspapers and media around the country, including The Grand Rapids Press, The Detroit News, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and Yahoo Sports. One even won a Pulitzer Prize.

In this profession, having a portfolio of published work is essential to show interviewers and employers. Are you thinking of transferring to a university and working on their newspaper or web site, or of finding an internship at a publication, web site, or other media outlet? You must have a portfolio of published work to show, and the Collegiate is the place to build that portfolio.

Below are the course offerings in the Journalism (JR) department at GRCC. For more information, contact faculty adviser Jennifer Ackerman-Haywood at jhaywood@grcc.edu.

Journalism Courses:

Journalism 251:  Introduction to Journalism. Reporting, interviewing, writing in the journalistic style, page design, editing, and multi-media reporting for websites (photo, audio, video). Requires work on the student newspaper or web site in the student newspaper office on campus. No previous journalism experience required. Offered only in the fall, Tuesdays & Thursdays 11:15 – 12:45. (3 credits)

Journalism 252:  Advanced Journalism. Continues the work of JR 251. Requires work on the student newspaper or web site in the student newspaper office on campus.   Offered only in January, Tuesdays & Thursdays 11:15 – 12:45.  (3 credits)

Journalism 253: Journalism Internship. Grants credit to students who have secured their own positions working at radio stations, TV stations, or newspapers. (2 credits/semester).  Instructor permission to enroll is required.

Journalism 254:  Mass Media.  A course examining the history and influences of print, TV, radio, movies, the Internet and their role in a democracy. No prerequisites. (3 credits).

Journalism 255: Newspaper Production.  An independent study (not a regular course) for students who wish to work on the student newspaper or web site. Work options include: graphic design, page design, illustrating, cartooning, photography, or web/Internet projects. Students work a number of hours per week on the student newspaper or web site, according to their own schedules and availability. Previous experience not required. (2 credits)

Please note: Do not enroll in JR 251 or JR 252, and JR 255 at the same time.

Journalism 256: Broadcast Communication.  Radio and TV broadcast history, production, technology, ethics, and writing for radio and TV.  Note:  this is primarily a lecture, not a studio-based, course although some hands-on experiences are offered. (3 credits)

Journalism 257:  Reporting.  Beats, backgrounding, interviewing, using public documents, computer assisted reporting techniques, and ethics.  Students should not enroll in this course before taking JR 251 or JR 252. (3 credits)

Journalism 266: Fundamentals of Public Relations. An examination of the role of public relations in society, business, and government. (3 credits)

Journalism 293: Seminar in Multi-media Journalism. A course focusing on the use of photo slideshows, audio, and video reporting projects for the Internet. Prerequisite: JR 251, or JR 252. (3 credits).