LMU introduces new journalism minor - Los Angeles Loyolan : News

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LMU introduces new journalism minor

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Posted: Monday, October 29, 2012 1:00 am

For those LMU students interested in pursuing a career in the media, a journalism minor will be available in the upcoming Spring 2013 semester.

After nearly 10 years of work and commitment to establish a journalism minor, LMU English professor and head of the journalism program Linda Bannister is excited about the new opportunity and said that “it’s a nice match with so many of the major programs at LMU.”

According to Bannister, the minor will require 21 units including four required courses: ‘The Language of Journalism’ (or ‘Writing for Journalism’), ‘Journalism: New Media,’ one course in community journalism or specialized journalism and one 400-level Capstone course with backpack journalism and long-form focus.

Bannister is particularly excited about the 400-level Capstone course, which she says will expose students “to the civic landscape of Los Angeles.” According to Bannister, students will acquire first-hand experience in journalism as they work on a long-form project grounded in interviews. The projects will be focused on issues prominent in the community and will be featured on LMU’s website and beyond.

In addition to these required courses, students may choose three electives to complete their units.

Bannister explained the appropriateness of such a major at LMU, saying, “The minor at LMU directly engages the University’s social justice mission by actively involving the students in the community and training them to participate in the new civic ecology.”

She further explained that LMU’s minor will stand out among other journalism programs because “the marriage of the social justice mission and the journalism program will make us unique in the Southern California region.”

Sophomore communications major Jackie Fischer is among many students at LMU who have been awaiting this program. “I’m really excited about the new journalism minor because I intend to go to graduate school for journalism and I know that will be extremely beneficial for me when I apply,” she said.

“I think it’s great that LMU has added the minor, because I know a lot of people, including myself, are really interested in it,” added Fischer.

While many students plan to declare their minors in the upcoming months, LMU English majors will be unable to participate at present, due to University regulations restricting students from minoring in their major program. Bannister assures English majors that the department is working hard to open the minor for them as well.

As the world of journalism continues to change, the minor also aims to address today’s new media. As LMU journalism professor Evelyn McDonnell explained, “The journalism and new media course is integrated in the program as an early prerequisite to provide students with part of the basic foundation of journalism.”

McDonnell also affirmed that “multimedia storytelling will be incorporated from the beginning” to prepare students for the jobs of the future.

Addressing those thinking about adopting the minor, Bannister said, “If you see yourself as a thinker who wants to have an impact on society, then what better way to do it than through your communication skills.”

As a journalist, Bannister said, “You can not only reach people, but you can cause them to be better informed and make better decisions.”

If you are seeking more information about the minor, contact Bannister at lbannist@lmu.edu.

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