summer - Reed College of Media



summer - Reed College of Media
Our Reach
Students and faculty use their expertise
to improve lives both locally and globally
James P. Clements
West Virginia University
Maryanne Reed
Diana Martinelli
Interim Associate Dean
Steve Urbanski
Director of Graduate Studies
Chad Mezera
Director of Online Programs
Kimberly Walker
Angela Lindley
Bailee Morris
Katlin Stinespring
1 Message from the Dean
2 Around Martin Hall
4 PR students bring long-term impact
to rural economy
6 Integrated marketing
communications on wheels
7 Student project honors 29 lost
8 Mobile app signals change,
opportunity for rural area
10 Students serve as content curators
13 Career journalist exports TV talents
14 Students develop campaign for
client in Ireland
WVU University Relations, Design
Forrest Conroy, Graham Curry
and Karyn Cummings
Mobile app signals change,
opportunity for rural area
12 Digital media experience helps
young journalist land editor position
Christa Vincent
WVU University Relations,
16 Road Tour project shares alumni
success stories
19 Student organization makes West
Virginia history
20 Journalism Week 2011: Game
changers under 40
23 Alumna finds niche market in
Snoburbia, U.S.A.
Students serve as content curators
24 Covering the hot zone of
25 IMC students complete online
master’s degree while serving their
26 Exploring “The Real World”
27 The young and the ambitious
28 May Commencement
30 About Our Donors
31 About Our Scholarships
32 Faculty Briefs
Alumni share success stories
34 Class Notes
WVU is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Institution. West Virginia University is governed by the West Virginia University Board of Governors
and the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission. James P. Clements is the 23rd president of West Virginia University.
Message from
the Dean
Welcome to the SOJ Insider, our magazine for alumni
and friends of the P.I. Reed School of Journalism. In this
edition, we focus on the School’s growing engagement
with the wider world – beyond Martin Hall and the
WVU community.
Rooted in Appalachia, the School has always embraced
its role within the University’s land-grant mission: to serve
West Virginia and help improve the quality of life for
its citizens. This community-based focus has influenced
every aspect of the School’s culture – from teaching and
creative scholarship, to training and outreach.
But within today’s dynamic digital environment, we
are poised to have an even greater impact. Faculty
research projects, such as the West Virginia Uncovered
mobile initiative, are helping rural media and their
local communities become players in the digital realm.
Through service-learning projects, such as the Ritchie
County Buy Local Initiative and the Soldiers of the
Coalfields interactive exhibit, our students are hoping to
increase civic participation and enhance local economies
through new media tools.
WVU Photo Services
New technology also has enabled us to expand our outreach to the global community.
This spring, students in the Health Public Relations capstone course developed a
social media campaign and mobile app for Shine, Ireland’s largest mental health
organization. The School’s IMC master’s degree program is providing its cuttingedge marketing communications education to an international audience, including
members of the U.S. military currently serving overseas in active duty. Going forward,
the School will be developing partnerships with universities around the world, leading
Save the Date!
Join us for WVU
Homecoming 2011 on
Saturday, October 1.
opportunities for the School of Journalism to expand its impact and reach. By
Details about the School
of Journalism’s annual
homecoming tent will be
available on the website.
further engaging our faculty in innovative approaches to strengthening journalism
to a cross-cultural exchange of students, faculty and curricula.
WVU’s new strategic focus on raising its research profile will create even more
and community in the digital age, the School can become an incubator of new ideas
that will benefit our students and the profession.
We welcome your ideas, suggestions and support, so that we can continue to provide
our students with a quality, relevant journalism education and the opportunities to
apply their skills in a global marketplace.
Maryanne Reed
Around Martin Hall
IMC program joins forces
with PRSA
In June, the School of Journalism’s Integrated
Marketing Communications (IMC) program partnered
with the world’s largest public relations organization,
Public Relation s Soc iety of A m erica (PRSA ) to
augment and enhance the IMC learning opportunities
available through
PRSA. Findings from
a recent PRSA survey
predict that IMC will
be one of the top five
proficiencies for public relations and
communications professionals in the next
five years. Through the collaboration,
IMC faculty, students and alumni will share content
Google executive visits SOJ
Google executive David Pavelko
returned home in October 2010 and paid
a visit to Martin Hall. The Morgantown,
W.Va., native talked to students about
the “Changing World of Advertising.”
Pavelko gave students a crash course
on the billion-dollar industry of searchadvertising, the future of mobile and
their interconnectivity with media. He
also provided a real-time demonstration
of “Google Instant,” a new search
enhancement tool that shows query
Alex Wilson
Google executive David Pavelko talks with SOJ
students about the future of mobile advertising
during his October 2010 visit to Martin Hall.
results as you type. Pavelko is the head of travel for the eastern region at
Google and manages marketing and advertising campaigns for travel businesses,
including airlines, hotel chains, cruise lines and car rental companies across
through PRSA newsletters, magazines, conferences
Google search, display, YouTube and television advertising platforms.
and the online Jobcenter. IMC and PRSA also will
School of Journalism co-sponsors
state’s 2010 U.S. Senate Debate
work together to develop relevant industry research
and professional development opportunities. Learn
more about the partnership and the IMC program at
SOJ students share their
learning experiences
from abroad
SOJ students have been
blogging this summer as part
of course-related work and
study abroad programs.
Public relations senior
Katlin Stinespring blogged
about her experience studying
abroad in the United Kingdom
while interning at the
London-based sports PR and
marketing firm, Totally Sporty.
On October 18,
Dean Maryanne Reed
moderated the 2010 West
Virginia U.S. Senate Debate.
The live event, which was
held in Morgantown, was
co-sponsored by T h e
Associated Press and the
School of Journalism.
WVU Photo Services
People across the country
SOJ Dean Maryanne Reed moderates the 2010 West Virginia
U.S. Senate debate at West Virginia Public Broadcasting
studios in October 2010.
tuned in to C-SPAN and West
Virginia Public Broadcasting
to watch four candidates debate for an opportunity to fill the vacant seat left by the late
U.S. Senator Robert Byrd. Democrat Joe Manchin, Republican John Raese, Mountain
Party candidate Jesse Johnson and Constitution Party candidate Jeff Becker answered
questions from a panel of four journalists. Then-West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin would
go on to win Byrd’s seat on Capitol Hill just 15 days after the debate.
L e d by Vi s i t i n g S h o t t C h a i r o f Jo u r n a l i s m
Lois Raimondo, a g roup of students traveled to
China in June as part of the International Media
course. Students studied Chinese media, politics
a n d c u l t u re a n d d o c u m e n t e d t h e i r a d ve n t u re s.
Scan the QR code to watch
the debate video
Student Awards
The fall 2010 crew for “WVU News” had a remarkable year,
earning regional, national and international recognition for
the student-produced newscast.
Best of Festival King Foundation Award
First Place in the “Student Newscast” category
Gold Award of Excellence as “Best Informational Newscast”
Silver Award of Distinction in the “Broadcast Newscast”
The fall 2010 “WVU News” cast and crew received numerous accolades last year, including
being named “best newscast in the country” by the Broadcast Education Association.
“I feel incredibly lucky to have been
able to work with and be a part of the
‘WVU News’ team. Winning an award for
all of our hard work really makes it all
worth it. It was definitely a team effort.”
– Keri Gero, television journalism senior and fall 2010
executive producer of “WVU News”
Scan the QR code to visit
the “WVU News” website
Gold Award in the “Best Broadcast TV Program” category
Platinum Award for “Best Broadcast Newscast”
Second Place in the “Best All-Around Television Student
Newscast” category
Award of Merit in the “Broadcast Newscast” category
This spring, “WVU News” also launched its website at, which features the producers’ blog,
current and archived newscast videos, a Twitter feed, student cast
and crew information, and more. “WVU News” airs statewide on
West Virginia Public Television and on Time Warner Cable in North
Central West Virginia and is available for download on WVU’s
iTunesU and YouTube.
Dean Reed receives positive
five-year review
In fall 2010, WVU Provost and Vice President Michele Wheatly
reappointed Dean Maryanne Reed to her position following her
favorable five-year review. A committee composed of nine internal
and external stakeholders evaluated Reed’s performance as the
School of Journalism’s Chief Academic Officer during 2004-2010.
Those serving represented faculty, staff, administrators and external
Several sources of information were used to assist in the review
process including the Dean’s self-evaluation, her presentation to the
committee, and a faculty/staff questionnaire. Reed was evaluated
in the areas of leadership and planning, personnel management,
program/budget management, enhancement of quality, faculty
governance/internal relations, students, external relations, and
Chelsi Baker, Breaking News Photography
Ashton Pellom, Television General News Reporting
Andrea Sauer, Television Sports Reporting
Tony Dobies, Sports Column Writing
Shannon Teets, Television Feature
Erica Mokay
10th place
Radio Category, Broadcast News Competition
WVU’s Public Relations Student Society of America
Matt Morris, Lauren Paslawsky, Brittany Vallina, Paige Selle
and Alyssa Schmid
Case study: “Facebook’s Privacy Issues”
overall assessment.
In a memorandum to the School’s faculty and staff, Wheatly
wrote, “Dean Reed is clearly doing an excellent job and is highly
valued by virtually all with whom she interacts as dean.”
Imagine driving 30 or more miles just to
purchase basic grocery staples, such as milk,
eggs and bread. With only two grocery stores in
the entire county, this is reality for many Ritchie
County, W.Va., residents.
Roy Griffith, owner of the Independent
Grocers Alliance (IGA) in Harrisville and
Pennsboro, W.Va., works every day to maintain
the two stores to prevent Ritchie County residents
from traveling even farther away.
Griffith is just one of many small-business
owners struggling to survive in a rural community
with a declining economic base.
With support from the Buy Local Initiative,
a new movement in Ritchie County, this outlook
is beginning to change.
The Buy Local Initiative is a long-term
campaign to educate Ritchie County residents
about how shopping at locally owned businesses
can contribute to the economic growth of their
communities. School of Journalism public
relations students spent the spring semester
helping to increase the public’s understanding of
the importance of buying locally and supporting
community businesses.
Led by Dr. Rita Colistra, the students
collaborated with the Ritchie Progress Alliance
and a class at Glenville State College to implement
the initiative. Colistra was awarded a $5,000
Campus-Community LINK grant from West
Virginia Campus Compact, a statewide
service-learning initiative funded by
the Claude Worthington Benedum
Foundation and coordinated in
partnership with the West Virginia
Community Development Hub and
WVU’s Center for Civic Engagement.
PR 324 students pause for an informal photo before giving their Buy Local Initiative presentations at the WV
Campus Compact Conference in Fairmont, W.Va., in April 2011. Front Row: Lauren Sandberg, Alexa Hadfield
and Julie Hildenbrand. Middle Row: Brittney Nuckols, Lindsay Kenders, Dr. Rita Colistra, Bridget Feeney, Taylor
Scarnato, Jacqueline Manley and Katlin Stinespring. Back Row: Samantha Esposito, Erin Gomez, Jared Lathrop,
Andria Alvarez, Kelly Dodds and David Scott (Ritchie County Buy Local Committee co-founder).
“I knew I had to be a part of the Buy Local
Initiative because I am a native West Virginian
who grew up in a rural area,” said Colistra. “I’m
a strong believer in service learning, and I want
to give back to the state in a way that can help
communities help themselves.”
By promoting the Buy Local Initiative, the
class not only practiced the public relations
skills they are learning in the classroom but
also gained practical experience by executing
a real campaign.
Jared Lathrop, a public relations junior,
said the project opened his eyes to the power of
public relations.
“The Buy Local Initiative has shown me
what few resources Ritchie County would have
without local businesses and why our efforts can
have so much impact,” said Lathrop. “Being a
part of it has really given me the confidence to
be a public relations professional.”
The students’ efforts are contributing
in more ways than their Ritchie County
contacts ever thought possible.
Senior Lauren Sandberg’s logo design
(left) was selected by members of the
Ritchie Progress Alliance to represent
the Buy Local Initiative.
“I am really excited about [the Buy Local
Initiative] because it is nice to have this infusion
of students with the community and all of the
“The Buy Local Initiative has
shown me what few resources
Ritchie County would have
without local businesses and
why our efforts can have so
much impact.” – Jared Lathrop
attention to buying local,” said Linda Bowlby,
small-business owner and co-chair of the Ritchie
Progress Alliance’s Buy Local Committee. “The
Alliance often has good ideas but no manpower
to accomplish them. With the students involved,
we can make a greater impact.”
Throughout the semester, the students
created newsworthy, professional media for the
Buy Local Initiative and gained exposure for
the many businesses that thrive within the hills
of Ritchie County.
The students explored North Bend State
Park, discovered a butterfly farm that operates
Photos by Chris Tokarcik
about 90 miles southwest of WVU’s campus, and
learned the distance that residents travel to sell
arts and crafts created in this rural community.
Senior Lauren Sandberg discovered that
many Ritchie County residents find social
communities within local businesses.
“Dodd’s Sporting Goods is the local hangout
for hunters and gun enthusiasts. People come
from all over West Virginia, Pennsylvania and
Ohio to visit this store,” Sandberg said. “I realized
this is the way locals interact – this is their way
of life. Visiting Ritchie County changed the way
I look at rural communities.”
“Working with the Buy Local Initiative
has truly shown me how much hard work,
devotion and time these local [business] owners
put into their stores,” said Julie Hildenbrand,
a public relations junior. “I hope the initiative
can better these businesses and show residents
how important they are to the community. By
making residents more aware that their support
does matter, the initiative has great potential to
change the spending habits of Ritchie County
residents in the long run.”
Excited to share these stories with both local
residents and an audience beyond Ritchie County,
the students blogged about their experiences,
uploaded videos and photos, and wrote regular
posts. In addition, they also learned that public
relations is about doing good and making an
impact in a community.
“Because of this class, I learned that
money is not the bottom line of PR, nor is it
just providing a service. It’s showing that we
care about our clients and the people that we
come into contact with,” Lathrop said. “[My
final trip to Ritchie County] was the moment
when I actually felt like a publicist. I felt that
my trip was the bookend of this project. I came
to Ritchie County to make a difference – not
just for a grade in my PR class. I realized that
I completed my goal. I made a difference in
Ritchie County, and no one will ever be able to
take that away from me.”
Arrows line the wall of Dodd’s Sporting Goods, a highly specialized firearms store in Ellenboro, W.Va.
Public relations students Samantha Esposito, Jacqueline
Manley and Lauren Sandberg talk with Ronnie Dodd Sr.
to learn more about his store, Dodd’s Sporting Goods.
Handmade marble from Davis Marbles in Pennsboro,
W.Va. Even with customers from around the world,
the family craftsmanship is part of a prominent West
Virginia landmark – two marbles serve as the eagle’s
eyes atop the Capitol dome in Charleston, W.Va.
Scan the QR code to visit
the Buy Local blog
Tin toys and bulk candy are just some of the treasures
to be found at Berdine’s Five & Dime, the oldest
store of its kind in America at more than 100 years in
operation in Harrisville, W.Va.
Integrated marketing
communications on wheels
When Daniel Gutzmore
(BSJ, 2002) and Juan Perez (BSJ,
2001) were sitting in their advertising
classes in Martin Hall they had a
vision – to be entrepreneurs. Now their
ingenuity is on display for a quarter-ofa-million commuters in New York City
other like-minded young
Highbrid Media
entrepreneurs in the School
o f Jo u r n a l i s m . S o o n ,
Highbrid Entertainment, a
promotional company for
musical artists, was born.
“Looking back on
it now, I can say that
experiences like putting
on shows at 123 Pleasant
each week.
SOJ alumni Daniel Gutzmore (left) and Juan Perez (right) began their own
Street [a Morgantown,
commuter-van marketing agency, Highbrid Media, converting private mass
Nearly seven years ago, the duo created W. Va . , mu s i c ve nu e ] ,
transportation into rolling advertisements.
Highbrid Outdoor – now called Highbrid Media – p re p a re d u s fo r wh at
a premiere commuter-van marketing agency. The we are doing now with
company has exclusive contracts to convert private Highbrid Media.”
mass transportation into rolling advertisements.
They also strive to take on clients that serve
After graduating and moving to New York
Gutzmore and Perez, both Brooklyn natives, City, Gutzmore and Perez tried to keep Highbrid their communities in some way. Clients like
didn’t have the idea for their venture until after Entertainment alive. However, trying to support New York State’s Child Health Plus Program,
they graduated from the School of Journalism. themselves while making it in the competitive which helps to educate New Yorkers about
However, they say their time at the School helped music industry proved to be too much.
reliable healthcare at little or no cost to anyone
them lay the foundation for their future.
During a brainstor ming session one under the age of 19, benefit from the company’s
“As soon as we got involved in the creation afternoon, they conceived a way to branch out. services. Gutzmore and Perez believe their strong
of Highbrid Media, I snapped back to what I Mutual friends in the printing industry approached commitment to building community has helped
learned sitting in the classroom at the J-School,” them about installing vinyl advertising on vehicles them grow as respected business leaders.
said Perez. “At the time it really didn’t connect for independent record labels, but Gutzmore and
“Daniel and I are always striving for greatness,”
with me because we weren’t
said Perez. “Sometimes being in the trenches, it
on Madison Avenue. We “As soon as we got involved in the creation
becomes hard to see how far you’ve come because
were just learning theory
always looking forward, but I can remember a
of Highbrid Media, I snapped back to what you’re
in a classroom, but it really
time when we only had one client. Now, looking into
became apparent that we I learned sitting in the classroom at the
the evolution of Highbrid Media, it’s interesting to
were trained well.”
look back and realize we’ve worked with Fortune 500
J-School.” – Juan Perez
It wasn’t only the
companies like McDonald’s and Western Union.”
advertising curriculum that prepared Gutzmore Perez took the idea even further.
Although Gutzmore and Perez have a lot
and Perez to launch Highbrid Media – experiences
“It was kind of like this lightbulb moment,” to look forward to – expanding their business to
in and out of the classroom also offered life lessons. said Gutzmore. “We knew we had this mass North Jersey, Philadelphia, Connecticut and South
Both entered WVU with different aspirations. transportation system in New York City, and there Florida this year – they never forget where it all
Gutzmore started as a marketing major, and Perez were these blank surfaces rolling all throughout the started for them. Both men are still involved in the
was going in a completely different direction with City – all throughout the neighborhoods – where WVU Alumni Association and the WVU Alumni
his education.
Business Council.
billboards aren’t prevalent.”
“I was actually looking to become a
“Whatever we can do for the school,” said
Gutzmore, the president of the company, and
biomedical engineer, but after a year-and-a-half of Perez, the CEO, refer to Highbrid Media as the Gutzmore. “My four-and-a-half years [at WVU]
struggling through calculus and physics, I needed a “Moving Marketing Experience.” In addition to really shaped me into the man that I am today.”
change of pace,” said Perez. “I took an advertising outdoor mobile marketing, their services include
“We love this school,” said Perez. “And that’s
course and really found it to be something I was digital signage in the vans’ interior, traditional not just a sales pitch.”
passionate about. After taking the class for one billboard campaigns, print advertising campaigns,
day, I changed my major.”
direct marketing, SMS marketing and customized
Once the two young men were introduced, retail marketing. The messages they create for their
it didn’t take long for them to join forces with clients are highly targeted and hyperlocal.
Student project honors 29 lost miners
On April 5, 2011, a small community in the actual service tuned in to
Katie Griffith
southern West Virginia gathered to remember 29 watch it live.
“Though there will
coal miners who lost their lives a year earlier in one
of the worst mine disasters in state history. And, e ve n t u a l l y b e a p hy s i c a l
thanks to the School of Journalism, their gathering memorial, this website is a place
where anyone can go,” Lavender
was accessible to a national audience.
The “Faces of the Mine” website was said. “They don’t have to be in
developed from an assignment for the West West Virginia to visit the site.”
“In creating a site where
Virginia Uncovered project by SOJ seniors
Paige Lavender and Evan Moore, as well as the public could gather online
AmeriCorps VISTA member Katie Griffith. and contribute the majority of
Officially launched on April 5, the site allows the content, students have been
the public to post their memories of miners who able to see first-hand the power
perished in the explosion at the Upper Big Branch of the media to give people
Mine, the largest mining disaster in West Virginia a voice,” said West Virginia
Uncovered project coordinator
since 1970.
“Faces of the Mine” is an interactive site, and SOJ lecturer Mary Kay Twenty-nine pieces of coal, each painted with the name of a miner killed in the
disaster, sit under a cross at a temporary memorial in Whitesville, W.Va.
created for the Whitesville, W.Va., community, McFarland.
Though students built the
where people can post stories, photographs
and videos and share the impact of the mining site and publicized it with an aggressive social deal of work to gain the trust and commitment
disaster on their lives. It includes photos and media campaign utilizing Facebook and Twitter, of those involved.
biographies for each miner, links to media the site was always intended to be handed
“Reaction has been quite positive in the
off to community community,” Gwinn said. “The site has taken
c ove r a g e o f t h e
m e m b e r s f o r on a life of its own. It’s expanded beyond its
disaster, a blog with “It’s the social aspect of ‘Faces of
them to manage. original scope, and that’s because of the flexibility
information about
Long before the and willingness of its creators. The quality of
the community and the Mine’ that makes it more than
site went live, the the website itself is a reflection of those who
progress updates
We s t V i r g i n i a created it.”
on the permanent
Upper Big Branch
memorial being built near the mine.
Katie Griffith
to discuss what
Built using free applications and software,
the site also featured live-streaming video the community needed and how the site could
coverage of the one-year memorial service. be sustained after it was built.
On April 5 – the one-year anniversary of
Hundreds of people who couldn’t attend
the mine disaster – the website was officially
Katie Griffith
handed over to the communities of Whitesville
and Montcoal, W.Va., where many of the miners’
families live. The site will be managed by the
Upper Big Branch Mining Memorial Group.
Mike Gwinn, a member of the Memorial
Group and the site’s community moderator, said
Journalism senior Paige Lavender checks her camera
settings while filming the “Remember the Miners” tribute
this is a unique way to memorialize the miners.
concert in Morgantown, W.Va., in November 2010.
“The interactive nature of the site makes
it different from other memorials,” Gwinn said.
“It’s the social aspect of ‘Faces of the Mine’ that
Scan the QR code to visit
makes it more than just a tribute page.”
the project website
Gwinn said he wasn’t initially sure how
A miner’s helmet, flowers and a flag sit in the UBB
the website would be perceived by the miners’
Miners Memorial gazebo, a temporary memorial in
Whitesville, W.Va.
families but that the SOJ students did a great
Mobile app signals change,
opportunity for rural area
West Virginia Uncovered project extends beyond newspaper support
“They’re doing the hard work to bring mobile
resources into their own community rather
than have national brands bringing those
resources to them.”­– Dana Coester
George Cicci, a May 2011 graduate of the School’s Integrated Marketing Communications
master’s degree program, designed the app as part of his research and graduate work.
Tucked away in the mountains of West
Virginia’s Potomac Highlands, Tucker County,
may seem an unlikely place for digital and
journalistic innovation.
But School of Journalism faculty and students
have been working with The Parsons Advocate to
produce a new mobile application that represents
much more than a technological advance or a
chance to boost advertising sales.
In this first iteration of the mobile initiative,
the School is piloting the app with the Advocate, a
weekly newspaper that serves the area. The project
is aimed at creating economic opportunity for an
entire community that may also serve as a model to
help bolster the flagging newspaper industry.
The new technology comes to the Advocate
courtesy of Assistant Professor Dana Coester, who
is using a $200,000 grant from the Ford Foundation
to lead an experiment in rural mobile media. The
Ford grant will enable Coester and the School of
Journalism to deploy the mobile app and research
its impact on several rural communities throughout
West Virginia.
The experiment is an extension of the West
Virginia Uncovered multimedia training project. The
project, which began in 2008, is designed to help rural
newspapers in West Virginia transition to the digital
age. The project began with students and faculty
training newspaper staff to produce multimedia and
interactive content for their websites.
Coester’s mobile app project in Tucker
County is focused on building a mobile community
by showcasing the county’s natural attractions,
such as Canaan Valley Resort State Park,
Blackwater Falls State Park and Dolly Sods
Wilderness to boost tourism dollars.
The app enables community members to
promote their businesses and the area in general.
Christa Vincent
Coester describes the initiative as a “leapfrog
event,” meaning participants have been asked
to work with the latest technology without first
learning and mastering more basic processes.
“We have business owners participating in the
app who don’t even have a smartphone,” Coester
said, “so they can’t even look at the app and see how
it works. But if I waited for all of the technology to
be in place, they would miss an opportunity to enter
something early, be players and take advantage of
what these tools and resources can do to make their
community more competitive.
“They’re doing the hard work to bring mobile
resources into their own community rather than have
national brands bringing those resources to them.”
Another goal is to strengthen legacy media by
providing new sources of revenue through the mobile
app that can supplement traditional advertising.
Former Advocate editor Kelly Stadelman said
the timing is right for the partnership.
“I think the people of this community are
ready for it,” she said. “You walk into the high
school, and it’s amazing how many kids have smart
phones. All the tourists who come here have smart
phones. The community has to be ready. If not,
technology’s going to pass us by.”
Coester is eager to track the results of the
app. She says it can be adopted by other rural
communities and, depending on its degree of
success, perhaps be used to infuse much-needed
capital into newspapers worldwide.
“The big disruption in the journalism industry
is the lack of an economic model: how does news
get paid for?” Coester said. “A lot of people are
racing to deliver this kind of solution. We think rural
communities have just as much innovation to bring
to this challenge as urban centers.”
This fall, Coester and her students will launch
the second iteration of the project, “Mobile
Mainstreet,” which proposes strategic “community
branding” as a viable economic model for local media
working in partnership with community members.
“Envisioning the community as a curated
mobile brand sponsored by local media puts a
new twist on traditional audience-building efforts,”
said Coester.
She and her interactive marketing students
will partner with multimedia reporting students
to develop content for the Parson’s app, as well as
deploy the app in at least two other communities.
West Virginia Uncovered by the numbers
How many papers are involved with the project?
The Parsons Advocate
Hampshire Review
Charleston Daily Mail
The Pocahontas Times
The Journal
Glenville Democrat and Pathfinder
The Register-Herald
Two-Lane Livin’
The Inter-Mountain
The Times Record
Moorefield Examiner
Coal Valley News
The Observer
Clay County Free Press
The Nicholas Chronicle
Spirit of Jefferson
The Shepherdstown Chronicle
How many students have taken the class?
since fall 2008
Total amount of funding the project
has received to date:
Ford Foundation:
Benedum Foundation:
Scan the QR code to
download the app
McCormick Foundation:
Three soldiers decorated with
the French Croix de Guerre for
bravery under fire near LeMans,
Sarthe, France. Left to right:
1st. Lt. William J. Warfield, Sgt.
Lester Fossie and Pvt. Alonzo
Walton. 2nd A.C. Photo by Pvt.
William B. Gunshor, U.S. Army
Signal Corps, January 1, 1919.
Students serve as
content curators
Interactive exhibit honors African American veterans
Photo courtesy of National Archives
What started as a class project
at the School of Journalism has
evolved into an interactive exhibit,
a website and an online store, and
more importantly, the opportunity
for one rural West Virginia
community to examine its cultural
heritage and share with the world
lessons from the past.
who migrated to McDowell County from the
The small town of Kimball in McDowell
with the McDowell County memorial and its
A guest at the exhibit opening on Veteran’s Day 2010
views one the photo essay walls of images from the
National Archives.
County, W.Va., is home to the Kimball World
board members in 2004 while working on his
Coalfields” opened to the public in November
War I Memorial, one of the nation’s only
documentary, “Fighting on Two Fronts: The
2011. Housed in the Kimball Memorial Building,
memorials honoring WWI black veterans.
Joel Beeson
rural South in the early 1900s to work in the coal
mines and who served in WWI.
“The miners bonded together under
dangerous conditions – their jobs often trumped
skin color,” said Beeson. “One of the quotes often
heard from school children was ‘when our fathers
came out of the mine, they were all black.’”
Beeson, the director of the West Virginia
Veterans History Project, became acquainted
Untold Stories of African American WWII
the display contains two full wall exhibits of
In 2009, SOJ Associate Professor Joel Beeson
Veterans.” After talking with community
photographs from the World War I time period,
shared the idea of creating a photo exhibit for the
leaders in Kimball and receiving a WVU
as well as a recording room for veterans to share
memorial with students in his visual storytelling
Grant for Public Service, Beeson and his
their stories with future generations. Assistant
class. He wanted to use photographs, multimedia
students were able to make his vision of an
Professor Dana Coester served as faculty
interviews, timelines and war memorabilia to
interactive exhibit and website a reality.
art director, advising students and providing
narrate the unique story of African Americans
“Forgotten Legacy: Soldiers of the
oversight of the exhibit installation.
Joel Beeson
A.J. Lawson
Photo courtesy of National Archives
Visual journalism senior, Evan Moore (center) applies acid-free adhesive to the bottom of a print
at the Kimball Memorial Building in November 2010. Visual journalism senior, Andrew Lawson
(right), documents the progress, while anthropology student, Maisie Fraley (left), lends a hand.
SOJ graduate student and Kimball Project AmeriCorps VISTA coordinator
Brianna Swisher (below left) aligns a sequence of prints with Assistant
Professor Dana Coester prior to the exhibit opening.
Brianna Swisher, a 2010 SOJ graduate and
store is hosted through Café Press, an online
revenue and tourist opportunities for the
AmeriCorps VISTA coordinator, helped lead
retailer of stock and user-customized, on-
memorial and the community. Board member
the project from its inception. In addition
demand products, including exhibit-related
E. Ray Williams said he has high hopes for the
to using her skills in a real-world setting,
posters, t-shirts, notebooks and postcards.
project’s impact on the community.
Swisher understands the impact this project
will have for years to come.
W h i l e i n K i m b a l l fo r t h e l a u n ch ,
“The Kimball World War memorial
students from Beeson’s multimedia reporting
project brings to light a tremendous amount
“This wasn’t an assignment we turned in for
class gathered oral histories, conducted
of history, important to healing cultural
a grade. We had people excited and counting on
interviews and worked to recruit area youth
wounds caused by deeply entrenched racism,”
us to follow through with our plans,” said Swisher.
in McDowell County to participate in a
said Williams. “Creating a larger market
“As a West Virginia native, I am honored to be
multimedia workshop to be held this summer.
for products will provide drastically needed
part of a project that brings to
life forgotten legacies in the hopes
that these oral histories won’t
disappear as generations pass.
The history of these veterans is
an important part of the history
of our state and our country.”
In November, Beeson and
his students launched the website,,
with infor mation about the
“The miners bonded together under
dangerous conditions – their jobs often
trumped skin color. One of the quotes
often heard from school children was
‘when our fathers came out of the mine,
they were all black.’” – Joel Beeson
financial support to tell the
story of these soldiers and this
community to the world.”
In addition to the impact
on the McDowell County
community, Beeson’s students
are gaining intensive real-world
ex p e r i e n c e, re p o r t i n g a n d
gathering content for interactive
jour nalism across multiple
project, the Kimball Memorial and a virtual
The workshop, funded by a Major Grant
“This is the future – journalists as ‘curators
tour of the exhibit including historical World
from the West Virginia Humanities Council,
of content’ working with computer scientists,
War I images and a photographic social survey
will teach participants how to collect and
who code and construct the interface based
of McDowell County coal miners by the famous
record digital oral histories and personal
on in-depth reporting,” said Beeson. “We are
Farm Security Administration photographer
artifacts to produce additional content for
very excited about the School of Journalism
Russell Lee.
the project.
taking a leadership role in defining new media
In October, Beeson also received a Campus-
The innovative project will continue
Community LINK grant through the West
into the fall 2011 semester, when Beeson’s
Virginia Campus Compact and WVU’s Center
multimedia storytelling class will join a team
for Civic Engagement to help support continuing
of computer science students to create rich
efforts during the spring 2011 semester.
multimedia content for an interactive touch
Scan the QR code to
visit the project website
Beeson and his students then added
table, as well as mobile and iPad applications.
an online store to the website. The virtual
Such applications will provide further
reporting, as well as making an impact on rural
communities throughout the state.”
Digital media experience
helps young journalist
land editor position
Chris Jackson
Tricia Fulks
always wanted a
career in journalism. Even before graduating
from the School of Journalism with her newseditorial degree, the Clarksburg, W.Va., native had
experience writing for the Charleston (W.Va.) Daily
Mail, the State Journal and the Daily Athenaeum.
But with the trend toward media convergence,
Fulks knew that she had to expand her skill set
beyond print journalism. Her experience as one
of the founding students of the “West Virginia
Uncovered” project did just that and ultimately led
the 24-year-old to her current position as editor of
The Shepherdstown (W.Va.) Chronicle.
Fulks credits her exposure to multimedia
production through the project as one of the
major impacts on her career path.
In 2008, Fulks and another student
collaborated with SOJ Associate Dean John
Temple to create a multimedia project that would
give students essential experience with digital
storytelling. Their initial idea developed into
the project, “West Virginia Uncovered: Digital
Journalism in the Mountain State,” through which
students and faculty partner with rural newspapers
to help bring them into the digital age.
During the project, Fulks worked with
several West Virginia newspapers, including The
Parsons Advocate, a weekly paper in Tucker
County. “West Virginia Uncovered” has since
flourished, benefitting both SOJ students and small
newspapers around the state each year.
“Starting out, I had no idea ‘West Virginia
Uncovered’ would grow so big,” Fulks said. “I
just knew I needed multimedia experience to
have a successful career.”
After graduating in 2009 – during what she
calls “the worst possible time for a journalist” –
Fulks found herself in a world where the economy
was suffering and jobs were scarce.
She took an internship in Florida but
ultimately returned to West Virginia to serve as
an AmeriCorps VISTA coordinator for the project
she helped initiate. She spent a year working with
high school and middle school students in Tucker
County, training them in citizen journalism.
“This project came about because we
had worked with the owners of The Parsons
Advocate for ‘West Virginia Uncovered,’” Fulks
said. “We branched off to work with children
in the county schools. The paper thought it
would be a natural fit to work with the schools
and teach students to be citizen journalists.”
After completing a year as a VISTA,
Fulks applied for a copy editor position at
a newspaper in Martinsburg, W.Va. The
editors were impressed by her extensive
knowledge of digital media and experience
with small weekly newspapers.
“That kind of experience is rare among
graduating students today,” Fulks said.
A week after her interview, she had an even
better position: the editor of their sister paper, The
Shepherdstown Chronicle.
Almost a year into her new job, Fulks has
already produced multimedia pieces for the
paper’s website.
“This is a college town,” she said, “so I
know some readers will be interested in an online
version of the paper. My goal is to focus on
increasing online readership while maintaining
the integrity of the print paper.”
Shepherdstown’s proximity to Washington,
D.C., has allowed Fulks to continue her
education at American University. She is
currently pursuing her master’s degree in
interactive journalism in a weekend program
designed for working professionals.
The “West Virginia Uncovered” project not
only shaped Fulks’ education but will continue to
play a part in her career for years to come.
“The idea to go to graduate school in
interactive journalism came from loving my
experience with ‘West Virginia Uncovered,’”
Fulks said. “I really enjoy digital media. Down
the road, as long as I’m doing multimedia
projects, I’ll be happy.”
Career journalist exports TV talents
Hunsicker joins Peace Corps at age 47 BY ANGELA LINDLEY
Steve Hunsicker
a student at WVU, he had no idea how far his training
in broadcast news would take him. As it turns out, he’s
been around the world and back again.
After graduating in 1983, his first stop was
WAJR radio in Morgantown, W.Va., where he
was a news reporter.
A year later, he moved to a television station
in Tallahassee, Fla., where he became acting
news director just five months after his arrival.
“It was a trial by fire,” Hunsicker said,
“but that experience is what got me interested
in management.”
Shawn Quast
His career as a broadcaster and news director
took him to television stations in Gainesville, Fla.;
Harrisburg, Pa.; Honolulu, Hi.; and Chattanooga,
Tenn., before he became Executive News Director
at a station in West Palm Beach, Fla., in 2003.
Although he was responsible for eight hours of
local news programming on two TV stations and
managed more than 70 people, Hunsicker felt
distanced from the news and from what initially
attracted him to the profession – public service.
“The best times of my news career were when
I was helping viewers solve problems,” he said.
After a 23-year broadcasting career,
Hunsicker took a dramatic change in course,
but it certainly wasn’t due to a shift in
personal philosophy.
At age 47 – nearly 20 years older than the
typical participant – Hunsicker was accepted
to serve in the Peace Corps and traveled to
the Kingdom of Tonga, an island country in
the South Pacific. It was the fulfillment of a
dream he had held since college, when he had
the opportunity to interview Lillian Carter, a
noted Peace Corps volunteer and President
Jimmy Carter’s mother.
I n To n g a , H u n s i c k e r u t i l i z e d h i s
background in management and worked as
a small-business advisor. He also was able
to transfer the skills he learned in his career
to help Tongan-owned businesses, including
building websites and creating videos.
Hunsicker said one big challenge he faced
was creating a business training video, which was
produced in the Tongan language. In the video, he
profiled successful Tongan business people.
Shortly after he returned to the United States
in December 2009, Hunsicker took a position as a
Peace Corps recruiter in South Florida. He works
from his home and spends a great deal of time on
college campuses speaking with students.
Hunsicker has written one book about
his experiences in the Peace Corps and is coauthor of another. “Steve’s Adventures with the
Peace Corps” is available in both printed and
electronic versions on and by other
booksellers. “Tonga” is a travel book published by
Other Places Publishing. The co-authors of the
travel book with whom Hunsicker collaborated
are returned Peace Corps volunteers.
Hunsicker credits his remarkable career
to the groundwork laid by the School of
Journalism and WVU.
“WVU gave me a great foundation for a
wonderful career,” he said.
Inset: At age 47, Steve Hunsicker fulfilled a personal
dream and joined the Peace Corps. He is pictured here
in 2009 in the Tongan Rain Forest on the island of
‘Eua, the southernmost island in Tonga.
Background: A Tongan man gives his horse a drink on
the island of Nomuka in the Ha’apai island chain in
Tonga. Hunsicker conducted a business workshop on
the island in 2008.
Steve Hunsicker
Students develop
campaign for
client in
“Life changing.”
That’s how one public relations
senior described her experience in
Ireland as part of this spring’s Health
Public Relations capstone course.
SOJ adjunct instructor Chuck Harman and
13 students traveled to Dublin during spring break
to meet with executives at Shine, Ireland’s leading
mental health organization. But the overseas
excursion was only one part of the journey
throughout the 16-week course.
Each semester, Harman leads an alternative
public relations capstone course focused on
developing a PR campaign for a real-world
healthcare client. The class functions as an
agency, giving the students a hands-on approach
to public relations – working as a team to meet
tight deadlines, manage demanding clients and
adhere to budgets.
This spring, Harman introduced his students
to Shine. Based in Dublin, Shine also operates
Ireland’s national media monitoring program to
promote responsible and accurate coverage of
mental health issues.
As director of external relations at the
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)
based in Arlington, Va., Harman has had several
encounters with Shine’s national projects manager,
Kahlil Thompson-Coyle. Harman knew Shine was
a perfect match for his class.
“I mentioned the idea to Kahlil nearly three
years ago,” said Harman. “It took a lot of time to
come to fruition, but it was worth the wait.”
Coyle was just as enthusiastic, seeing the
inherent benefits of working with Patty Harman
the college class.
“We were excited about
having the students get involved
with our organization because it
offered an opportunity for fresh
eyes to consider what we are
doing and how we might do things
better,” Coyle said.
The class also had the added
bonus of working with SOJ
alumnus and “agency mentor,”
Mike Fulton (BSJ, 1979), executive
vice president of GolinHarris,
one of the world’s leading public
relations and government affairs
firms. Fulton offered the students
real-world advice on working in
teams toward a common goal
– staying focused on the client’s
goals as well as responding to and
enhancing tactical elements.
One of the class’ first
challenges was to brand their
agency. The group of soon-to-be
college graduates aptly named their firm “Young
and Able.”
With the time difference and geographic
distance to consider, the agency “met” with their
client via Skype video conferencing and email
to discuss Shine’s public relations problems and
identify their long- and short-term goals. Most of
the real work, however, was done outside of the
“Outside of class is where all the
brainstorming, team meetings, research and
implementation took place. This was an experience
From left to right: Chuck Harman, Kahlil ThompsonCoyle, Amanda Ciktor and Dan Frey visit Newgrange, an
ancient temple located in Ireland’s Boyne Valley built
more than 5,000 years ago.
“They helped us to stand back and gain a different perspective,
which has been a very valuable learning experience for us. They have
also helped to ignite change within the organization in a positive way
and helped us to focus in on some key developments that are very
achievable for us to implement.” – Kahlil Thompson-Coyle
in itself,” said Amanda Ciktor,
public relations senior. “Having
to come together as a group
outside of class to create and
implement an entire PR plan
was definitely challenging.”
The students assembled
themselves into three teams to
match the needs of the client:
updating their helpline services,
reorganizing their membership
options and promoting their
emerging art program. Charged
with developing this three-part
campaign, Young and Able set
to work conducting research
and developing tactics for a
comprehensive plan.
By March, the class was
ready to present their plan to
Shine’s senior management.
The group traveled to
Patty Harman
Dublin for a seven-day trip. Each
team presented their findings
and pitched their campaign
Young and Able group photo. Front row: Amanda Ciktor,
ideas to the client. Prior to the trip, Shine explained
Lindsay Kenders, Jordan Weisenborn, Missy Marlow
that they did not have any funds for the agency’s
and Kristina Snider. Second row: Adrienne Lundell,
work and that any ideas generated by the students
Dan Frey, Caitlin Melvin, Johnna Shumate and Lindsay
needed to be implemented without costs.
Bailey. Third row: Chuck Harman, Lauren Paslawsky,
Marissa Leuzzi and Apollo Marple.
After presenting their plan, Shine’s Director
John Saunders was
so impressed that he
“hired” Young and
Scan the QR code to watch a video
Able to implement the
about the project
plan and provided a
budget of 5,000 euro
(approximately $7,200).
While in Ireland, the group also heard
lectures by Irish public relations professionals, and
two of the students presented a lecture at Griffith
College Dublin. They also traveled by train to
Kilkenny to visit a regional Shine office and toured
a famous archeological site built in 3300 BC.
“They helped us to stand back and gain
a different perspective, which has been a very
valuable learning experience for us,” Coyle said.
“They also helped to ignite change within the
organization in a positive way and helped us to
focus in on some key developments that are very
achievable for us to implement.”
By semester’s end, Young and Able revamped
Shine’s website; implemented a new blog and
Facebook page for the Shine Arts program;
created new membership levels; developed
new promotional materials; and worked with
SOJ advertising senior Armand Patella to build
a smartphone app, saving the organization
thousands of dollars in production costs.
Ciktor said the experience gave her more
than just a final grade on her transcript.
“Working firsthand in healthcare PR has
made me realize how important it is to fully support
and believe in the cause you are representing,”
Ciktor said. “A successful healthcare PR campaign
doesn’t just satisfy the client, but it creates a positive
impact on the wellness of individuals.”
Harman felt the group went above and
beyond what was expected of them as students.
“The students were strategic, creative and
extremely professional,” Harman said. “It is
hard to determine whether this experience had
a more profound effect on the students or Shine.
Clearly, this was an experience that made a positive
difference for a number of people.”
“Road Tour”
Project shares alumni
success stories
During the summer of 2010, fellow School traveling to videotape interviews with alumni
of Journalism student Corey and I were sent on a in their home environments and work places.
mission to gather stories of SOJ alumni. Quickly By the end of the summer, we had interviewed
dubbed the “Alumni
20 graduates who
Road Tour,” the effort Christa Vincent
shared their success
focused on collecting
stories and ref lected
the testimonials of SOJ
on their time at WVU
graduates living and
and the School of
working in West Virginia
and the mid-Atlantic
While on the
road, we also blogged
Corey and I worked
about our experiences
as a cross-disciplinary
a n d s h a re d s a m p l e s
team, combining our
skills into a multimedia,
We d i s c u s s e d t h e
story-telling production
ch a l l e n g e s we f a c e d
ef fort. Corey was a SOJ broadcast graduate Corey Preece (left) and
and the lessons learned
broadcast news graduate PR senior Bailee Morris worked as a multimedia along the way – from
to collect alumni video testimonials during
a n d s t a r t i n g i n t h e team
n av i g a t i n g T h e B i g
the summer of 2010.
j o u r n a l i s m m a s t e r ’s
Apple to changing our
program, and I was a public relations senior daily plans at a moment’s notice.
with some of my own photography and video
Though it was initially designed to be part
experience. We were quick to step up to the of the School’s recruitment and marketing
challenge. It seemed like a perfect fit.
efforts, the project revealed many more
We began our efforts in late May 2010, lessons and benefits than anticipated.
researching, identifying and contacting
While we learned to deal with
alumni; scheduling meeting times; and t h e c h a l l e n g e s o f b e i n g o n - t h e - ro a d
correspondents, we were also inspired by
SOJ graduates who use their degrees in both
traditional and non-traditional professions. We
met with bloggers, entrepreneurs, social media
experts, radio personalities and more.
“One of the great things about the
project was learning about the different
areas of modern journalism,” said Corey. “I
graduated with a degree in broadcast, but I
found myself dipping into the public relations
when we had to communicate with alumni
and post to our blog. I realized that I could
use my broadcast skills and apply them into
other elements of journalism.”
Corey and I agree that while we were
able to enhance our professional skills
through this project, one of the biggest
rewards was making connections with an
extended SOJ “family” and ultimately feeling
like we were part of a larger community.
We’re happy to have had the chance
t o m e e t t h e m , a n d m o re i m p o r t a n t l y,
share their stories with past and future
generations of SOJ students.
Here are some of the people we met
along the way.
“It’s all about being able to tell a good story.
That’s what I learned at WVU.” – Kellen Henry
Bailee Morris
Bailee Morris
Bailee Morris
Ranelle Sykes
Kellen Henry
Michael Pehanich
As “DJ Rane” on WPGC 95.5 in
Washington, D.C., Ranelle Sykes (BSJ, 2000)
has had the opportunity to meet big names
in the hip-hop music industry but said it’s the
everyday people that “rock” her world.
Sykes started out at the School of
Journalism with an open mind and a strong
storytelling desire. In addition to her classwork,
she put her skills to work at the college radio
station, U92 FM, and at various internships
in the Pittsburgh, Pa., area.
Sykes loved being in the studio and knew
that it was the right direction for her career. Her
love for telling the stories of the people, she said,
“was born at the School of Journalism.”
Shortly after graduating with her journalism
degree in broadcast news, Sykes landed a job
at WAMO 106.7 in Pittsburgh, Pa., where she
reconnected with a former coworker from an earlier
internship at Black Entertainment Television. He
encouraged Sykes to return to the D.C. area – “to
come home” – and work at WPGC.
Now, Sykes uses her radio power to rally the
community for local efforts and initiatives and
finds her inspiration in the people of the D.C.
area. She said, “I remember the people more
than I remember the celebrities.” n
Kellen Henry (BSJ, 2008) knows the news.
Whether covering a local concert for the WVU
campus newspaper or writing for sites like or the PBS Newshour’s blog,
“Run Down,” Henry has always been able to
sniff out a story.
While a news-editorial student at the
School of Journalism, Henry covered stories
for The Daily Athenaeum and organized
events for WVU’s chapter of the Society of
Professional Journalists.
Henry said her education allowed her to “hit
the ground running” when she graduated.
“I remember Professor Bonnie Stewart
telling me in reporting classes, ‘Think about who
are the players, what is the game and what is at
stake.’ That’s what it all comes down to . . . it’s all
about being able to tell a good story. That’s what
I learned at WVU,” said Henry.
Now, just a few hours away from Martin
Hall, Henry is able to apply those lessons to
her career. As a web producer for Bloomberg
Gover nment in Washington, D.C., she
facilitates daily publishing on the
website and helps to build brand recognition
on social media channels. n
Michael Pehanich (BSJ, 2001) never
imagined that someday he would be working
for the NFL.
As the Director of Communications for
the Washington Redskins, he credits his career
as an “NFL PR Guy” to the strong writing skills
he learned at the School of Journalism.
H av i n g g rad u ated f ro m th e n ew s editorial program, Pehanich gained the
confidence he needed to translate those skills
across communication platforms.
“I’m in the PR field now, but I never
would have gotten into this without the writing
background that I have, which I got at the P.I.
Reed School of Journalism.”
After graduation, Pehanich worked with
the Miami Dolphins – first as an intern and
then in a full-time position for five seasons.
He eventually moved into his current position
in Washington, D.C.
“You change and you evolve in life, and
you start to find your niche,” said Pehanich.
Right now, his niche is with professional
football. n
Scan the QR code to watch
2010 Alumni Road Tour Interviews
the videos.
West Virginia and Pennsylvania
Linda Arnold
(BSJ, 1976) – Chairman and CEO of The Arnold Agency –
Charleston, W.Va.
Chip Fontanazza
(BSJ, 2009) – MetroNews Interactive Reporter and Producer at
West Virginia Radio Corporation – Morgantown, W.Va.
David Lied
(BSJ, 1976) – Vice President Consumer Promotional Services
at Brunner, Inc. – Pittsburgh, Pa.
Rose Lied
(BSJ, 1976) – Vice President, Group Account Strategy Director
at Brunner, Inc. – Pittsburgh, Pa.
Anne Linaberger
(MS-IMC, 2009) – News Director at KDKA – Pittsburgh, Pa.
Lauren O’Connor
(BSJ, 2008) – Founder of nonprofit organization, “Driving for
Washington, D.C. Metro Area
Bailee Morris
Andrew Worob
Andrew Worob (BSJ, 2005) wanted to be
a sports journalist when he graduated from the
School of Journalism but discovered a different
passion along the way. Always a proponent of
adopting new skills, his penchant for media
technology has paid off.
While a news-editorial student at WVU, Worob
wrote for The Dominion Post in Morgantown, W.Va.
Though trained as a print journalist, he didn’t limit
himself to a single medium. Worob also spent time in
the U92 FM campus radio station and worked WDTV
television station in Bridgeport, W.Va.
After graduation, Worob wrote for web-based
publications, including and
In 2006, he transitioned his media experience
into the public relations industry, managing media
relations and national media placements for such
companies as G.S Schwartz and Linden Alschuler &
Kaplan. In 2008, he moved to an account supervisor
position at Ruder Finn in New York.
Since starting his own personal PR blog, “PR
at Sunrise,” and gaining national attention for
his work, Worob has carved his own niche within
Ruder Finn. Currently serving as manager of digital
communications, Worob helps clients enhance their
online presence and educates Ruder Finn staff on the
changing PR landscape in the digital realm. n
Michael Fulton
(BSJ, 1979) – Executive Vice President at GolinHarris –
Washington, D.C.
Karina Gomes
(MSJ, 2004; BSJ, 2001) – Producer at Al Jazeera news network
– Washington, D.C.
Kellen Henry
(BSJ, 2008) – Web Producer for Bloomberg Government –
Washington, D.C.
Sarah McLean
(BSJ, 2008) – Account Coordinator at Concepts Inc. –
Bethesda, Md.
Jason Neal
(BSJ, 1999) – Engineering Services at NBC – Washington, D.C.
Michael Pehanich (BSJ, 2000) – Communications Director for the Washington
Redskins – Washington, D.C.
Ranelle Sykes
(BSJ, 2000) – Radio DJ at 95.5 WPGC – Lanham, Md.
Kristen Thomaselli (BSJ, 2009) – Staff Assistant to Senator Jay Rockefeller –
Washington, D.C.
New York, N.Y.
Courtney Balestier (BSJ, 2005) – Senior Associate Editor at “Every Day with
Rachael Ray” magazine – New York, N.Y.
Megan Bowers
(BSJ, 2009) – Associate Content Producer at –
New York, N.Y.
Jennifer Manton
(BSJ, 1991) – Chief Marketing Officer at Loeb & Loeb Law
Office – New York, N.Y.
Kaila J. Raines
(BSJ, 2008) – Sales and Events Manager for Restaurant
Associate – New York, N.Y.
Scott Widmeyer
(BSJ, 1975) – Chairman and CEO of Widmeyer
Communications – New York, N.Y.
Andrew Worob
(BSJ, 2005) – Independent blogger and Manager of Digital
Communications at Ruder Finn – New York, N.Y.
Student organization makes West Virginia history
SOJ home to first state chapter of National
Association of Black Journalists BY CHRISTA VINCENT
When the students and faculty who founded
the West Virginia University Association of Black
Journalists (WVUABJ) set out to start the group,
they didn’t want to create just another student
organization. They wanted to build a community.
“It was really important for students of color
to feel like they have some type of organization,
or some kind of community, that was a support
system for them,” said Chelsea Fuller, newseditorial senior and WVUABJ President.
“We have SPJ and PRSSA, but there wasn’t
anything that actually dealt with issues regarding
journalists of color.”
Fuller, along with broadcast news senior
Ashton Pellom, journalism senior Morgan
Young and the club’s faculty advisor, Visiting
Assistant Professor Tori Arthur, started laying
the groundwork for WVUABJ in fall 2009. By
fall 2010, the National Association of Black
Journalists officially accepted the group as a
charter member. They would become the first
chapter of the National Association of Black
Journalists (NABJ) in West Virginia.
“I think this says ‘yes, we are committed
to diversity,’” said Arthur. “These types of
organizations can contribute so much to our
School and our greater community by introducing
people to a host of issues – maybe even people –
they were never aware of before.”
Dean Maryanne Reed encouraged Arthur
to start the student organization as part of a longterm strategy to attract and retain students and
faculty from diverse backgrounds.
“As a School of Journalism, we need to
ensure that our population reflects the diversity
of the greater society,” said Reed. “Student
organizations like WVUABJ expose our students
to a wider range of ideas, experiences and
perspectives, which will help them succeed in an
increasingly multicultural, global community.”
One of the goals WVUABJ undertook was
to raise awareness of diversity in the media.
During the spring 2011 semester, the organization
sponsored and co-sponsored, several events,
including a panel discussion on the racial climate
at WVU; a screening of the movie “American
History X” in the Mountainlair; a reception to
commemorate the historic “Bloody Sunday”
march in Alabama; and a presentation by CNN’s
Roland Martin.
In April, WVU took notice of the group’s
hard work. At the University’s first NAACP
Image Awards, coordinated by the Center for
Black Culture and Research and the WVU
student chapter of the NAACP, WVUABJ won
Student Organization of the Year for their efforts
in promoting social justice on campus.
Pellom, who served as Vice President
of the student organization during the 20102011 academic year, was recognized with the
Outstanding Achievement Award at the same
event. He said being a part of the WVUABJ
enriched his life both personally and professionally.
“I used to spend all of my time in class, at
work or at home,” said Pellom. “I’ve done more
things in the community and met more people
this year alone than I have my first three years
here – all because of WVUABJ.”
Although Fuller and Pellom stepped
down from their executive positions after May
graduation, both of them plan to attend the NABJ
convention in Philadelphia, Pa., this August. This
The 2010-2011 WVUABJ executive board and
members pose with CNN’s Roland Martin after
his presentation in the Mountainlair Ballroom in
February 2011. Pictured from left are Diane Jenty,
Melanie Perry, Selarra Armstrong, Ashton Pellom,
CNN’s Roland Martin, Tori Arthur, Tierra Thomas,
Chelsea Fuller and Jocelyn Ellis. Not pictured are
Kyle Hayes and Brandon Radcliffe.
will be Fuller’s second year as a participant in the
NABJ Student Multimedia Project, a studentrun newsroom where participants report on the
convention. As for the future of WVUABJ, the board will
vote on new student officers in September. Both
Fuller and Pellom said they look forward to seeing
the group thrive in coming years.
“It’s kind of our child, you know? You want
your child to grow up and be successful,” said
Pellom. “We laid the foundation. Now we just
want to see it grow.”
Chelsea Fuller President
Ashton Pellom Vice President
Tiara Thomas Secretary
Jocelyn Ellis Treasurer
Melanie Perry Social Media Chair
Kyle Hayes Community Service Chair
Visiting Assistant Professor
Tori Arthur Faculty Advisor
Game Changers Under 40
Notice how many of Dave’s ideas were realized
via free tools (e.g., wikis) - you don’t need to be
technical to innovate. #jweek 04/05/2011 3 RETWEET
cornerstone of any strong campaign.
“It’s not just about messaging your
audience,” she said. “It’s about how well you can
make adjustments based on incoming information
from the public. I think that we’ve seen a lot
of success because we’ve been willing to listen,
change and adapt to what the public wants.”
In fact, Harman said it was the general public
that decided the Red Cross would create another
texting campaign to help the victims of Japan’s
earthquake and tsunami in March 2011. She
WVU Photo Services
Journalism Week speaker and SOJ alumnus Andrew Scritchfield works with SOJ students in a multimedia
editing suite following his class presentation and small-group workshop.
When students at the School of Journalism
first learned that a Pulitzer Prize winner was
coming to Martin Hall for Journalism Week 2011,
they might have expected to see someone twice
their age. Instead, they met 28-yearold newspaper reporter, Daniel
Gilbert. Gilbert, like the School’s four
other featured speakers, is changing the face
of journalism and creating
his own opportunities.
This year’s Journalism
Week speakers are bringing a
young, tech-savvy approach
to an already transformed
media landscape. Rather
than having to adapt to
the times, they are leading
the way, redefining journalism and strategic
communications in the digital age.
Wendy Harman, director of social media for
the American Red Cross, kicked-off the series of
events in April with her presentation, “Mobilizing
Your Audience Through Social Media.”
“I have the best job in the universe because
I play on Facebook for a living,” Harman said.
“Hopefully, I’m doing that for a good reason.”
When a devastating earthquake hit Haiti in
January 2010, Harman utilized social media to
raise money for relief efforts. She and her team
established a texting campaign, and in just 72
hours, the Red Cross raised $3
million – $10 at a time.
“There were no other PR or
marketing efforts behind it other than
WVU Photo Services
David “DigiDave” Cohn talks one-on-one with SOJ
students after his presentation about communityfunded journalism during Journalism Week 2011.
said that users were so accustomed to “Text Haiti
to 90999” that they began texting the number
again – without any prompting from
the Red Cross.
“[Japan relief] trended on
Catch @ascritch discussing how he
Twitter a good eight hours before
reinvented TV news at @WVUJournalism 1pm
our senior leadership made any
in Martin Hall for #jweek 04/07/2011 RETWEET
decisions about fundraising,” said
Audience participation is also
at the core of David “DigiDave”
the spread that people like you gave it on
Cohn’s community-funded reporting project,
Twitter and Facebook,” said Harman. “Clearly,
Spot.Us. Cohn, a fellow at the Reynolds
this was a whole new way of
Harman told students that
using social media for nonScan the QR code to watch
profit is more than just sending
videos of J-Week speakers
tweets or posting on Facebook
and that listening remains the
“Mobilizing Your Audience Through
Social Media”
Wendy Harman
WVU Photo Services
Director of Social Media, American Red Cross
Monday, April 4, 2011
Talia Mark shares her experience managing
NASCAR’s diversity programs with advertising
students during her Journalism Week presentation.
Journalism Institute at the University of
Missouri, launched the web-based project in
November 2008 after his idea won the 2008
KnightNews Challenge. The “experiment”
allows people to pledge money to the stories
they want to see produced.
“I didn’t invent donating to journalism.
People do that all the time,” Cohn said, citing
National Public Radio as an example. “The
difference is . . . covering your eyes, throwing money
over a fence and hoping it lands on something you
believe in versus a sense of transparency and
control over where the money goes.”
The open source project is helping to pioneer
what Cohn refers to as “community-powered
reporting.” Through the Spot.Us website, the
public can make tax-deductible contributions to
stories that interest them. Once a project is fully
funded and produced, Spot.Us partners with news
organizations to distribute the story.
During his Journalism Week presentation,
“Promoting Diversity: Changing the
Face of NASCAR”
Talia Mark
Manager of Diversity Affairs, NASCAR
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
“Spot.Us: An Experiment in CitizenFunded Journalism”
David “DigiDave” Cohn
Online journalist and innovator
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
#jweek ‘As a journalist, when I can,
I like to not just raise questions but
answer them.’ 04/06/2011 RETWEET
“Spot.Us: An Experiment in Citizen-Funded
Journalism,” Cohn told students that the end goal
was not necessarily to be a huge success but to
experiment and to learn something along the way.
“Journalism is a process, not a product,” said
Cohn. “I believe journalism will only succeed on
the shoulders of its failures.”
Cohn also said that he believes journalism
schools and their students have a new obligation
– not just to learn but also to push the industry
forward. He also encouraged students to “steal”
his idea and create their own models.
“I wasn’t much older than some of you when
I purchased my first URL for $10 and started
raising money for stories,” said Cohn. “Right
now, you have a distinct advantage – youth and
a lot of leeway.”
While Cohn may be taking a progressive
“Small Papers. Big Stories:
Investigative Reporting in Rural Areas”
Daniel Gilbert
Pulitzer Prize for Public Service 2010
Wednesday, April 6, 2011
Sponsored by the Ogden Newspapers Seminar Series
“Reinventing TV News: Multimedia
Journalist Covers the World”
Andrew Scritchfield
Cameraman, NBC News
Thursday, April 7, 2011
Journalism will only succeed on the shoulders
of its failures #jweek 04/05/2011 RETWEET
WVU Photo Services
Andrew Scritchfield meets with television journalism students during Journalism Week 2011 to offer career
advice to the upcoming graduates.
approach to his career, Pulitzer Prize-winning
reporter Daniel Gilbert is proof that there are still
opportunities to shine in legacy media.
As a staff writer at the Bristol (Va.) Herald
Courier, Gilbert wrote a series of articles exposing
flaws in Virginia’s administration of natural gas
royalties. In 2010, the series earned him the
Pulitzer Prize for Public Service.
“That’s the great opportunity that exists at
that level,” said Gilbert of working at a smaller
paper. “Sometimes papers and journalists at the
micro-level will be the only ones to know that
something is wrong before national journalists
start digging.”
During his presentation, “Small Papers. Big
Stories: Investigative Reporting in Rural Areas,”
sponsored by the Ogden Newspapers Seminar
Series, Gilbert encouraged students to proactively
tackle stories that may seem out of reach.
“I learned that the best way to do investigative
reporting is to do investigative reporting,” said
Gilbert. “Send a signal to people in the community
that if they want to get something out to call or
email you.”
Although he was working for a small-town
camp” run by Investigative Reporters and Editors
(IRE) at the University of Missouri, Gilbert was
able to build a database to gather and analyze
the data necessary to uncover the missing gasescrow payments.
Gilbert has since made the jump to The Wall
Street Journal, where he covers the energy industry.
RT @dougWalp: DigiDave’s ideas and concepts seem more impressive the
more he explains them, I’m think I’m sold. #jweek 04/05/2011 RETWEET
He admits that while he is not an expert on the
subject, he strives to learn more every day so he
can “cover his beat with authority.”
Already a “go-to guy” at NBC News
at Washington, D.C., SOJ alumnus Andrew
Scritchfield (BSJ, 1998) is helping to enhance
the skills of network journalists.
Eager to tackle a project outside of the
engineering department, Scritchfield offered to
train NBC producers and correspondents how to
use small video cameras and editing
equipment to file their own stories. As
“backpack journalism” is viewed as
a cost-saving measure in newsrooms
“fail early, fail often - try again” new life
across the country, NBC executives
motto? #jweek 04/05/2011 2 RETWEET
took Scritchfield up on the offer.
“Anyone entering the business
now is expected to know how to use a
newspaper, Gilbert said his resources weren’t camera, write and edit,” said Scritchfield. “It’s
limited. After attending a six-day reporting “boot no longer a nice-to-have – it’s a must have to break
into any TV market right now.”
Scritchfield’s initiative earned him additional
opportunities. When planning a trip to Africa,
one of the producers requested Scritchfield to
be the cameraman on the assignment. When he
returned, NBC offered Scritchfield a promotion,
making him the youngest full-time cameraman
at the network. Since then, the 34-year-old has
had the opportunity to travel to Iraq, Afghanistan,
Oman, United Arab Emirates and Haiti.
Scritchfield shared his story to show SOJ
students that, with the right skills and enough
determination, they can achieve anything.
“You’ve got to have that kind of drive.
You’ve got to know what you want to do,” said
Scritchfield. “It’s not going to be that glamorous at
first, but nowadays you can shorten the curve from
freshly out of school to where you want to be.”
That same determination led Talia Mark
to her position as the manager of diversity affairs
for the National Association for Stock Car Auto
Racing, Inc. (NASCAR). Challenged to “change
the face” of NASCAR, Mark had a lot to learn
about the historically white, male-dominated sport.
“I didn’t know what NASCAR was,” said
Mark. “I couldn’t tell you what it stood for or even
name a driver.”
But her open-mindedness and desire to learn
propelled her into a rewarding career. Mark used
her public relations and advertising education to
grow NASCAR’s fan base while preserving its
brand. She led community outreach programs
like NASCAR Street Tour, an interactive mobile
marketing initiative, to bring the sights and sounds
of auto racing to a variety of audiences. She also
founded the relationship between NASCAR
and DUB Magazine and promoted NASCAR’s
Diversity Internship to college students across
the country.
“The challenge of diversity in NASCAR
is a generational challenge,” said Mark. “A
lot of people thought, think and will continue
to think that NASCAR is just for one type of
person…but it’s really not.”
A scene from Lydia Sullivan’s “Snoburbia” in Montgomery
County, Md., a wealthy Washington, D.C., suburb.
Lydia Sullivan
Alumna finds niche market
in Snoburbia, U.S.A.
the ecosystem of Borneo or
When Lydia Sullivan
(BSJ, 1984) drives her
Sullivan credits her
teenager to his soccer match,
h u m bl e We s t Vi rg i n i a
her dented 2003 Toyota
upbringing for keeping her
Sienna mini-van stands
grounded, and she credits
out among newer model
her School of Journalism
Volvos and Mercedes SUVs.
professors – including Paul
The car is emblematic of a
Atkins, Pam Yagle, Charles
woman who is both part of
Cremer and Frank Kearns
“snoburbia” and a clever
– for teaching her how to
critic of its pretentious ways.
write and “get it right.”
A Huntington, W.Va.,
She also learned about the
native and broadcast news
importance of internships,
graduate, Sullivan now
which helped her land a job
lives in Kensington, Md.,
Margriet Oostveen, NRC Handelsbad
after graduation as a media
in Montgomery County,
Sullivan stands in front of her “Snoburbia”
spokesperson for Cedar Point
a w e a l t h y s u b u r b o f home in Montgomery County, Md.
amusement park in Sandusky,
Washington, D.C. Two
Snoburbia/Adrienne Price
years ago, she launched a
The “I Got In” tee is one of Sullivan’s designs at
After that job, Sullivan moved to Los “Snoburbia,” a t-shirt site and blog that celebrate
blog and t-shirt business, called Snoburbia,
to “skewer the rampant overachiever-ism” of Angeles, where she was a lobbyist for Gannett. and gently poke fun at the overachiever suburbs of
Washington, D.C., and other big American cities.
Then she moved to Washington, D.C., where
her fellow suburbanites.
“People here are on hyper-drive, and they she served as advertising director and then
A recent comment questioning why a
are super competitive,” Sullivan said. “I didn’t publisher of the small but respected D.C.
grow up in that environment, and I find it funny magazine, Washington Monthly. In 1992, she “smart, well-educated” person like Sullivan isn’t
– there are humorous elements to it. At our local left the full-time job market to be a stay-at- doing “more” with herself received this response:
public school – a Newsweek Top 100 high school, home mom. Sullivan has four children, ages “Two words: Four. Children.”
Sullivan isn’t quite sure where her
of course – there was not one but two Intel 11, 15, 17 and 18.
These days, in addition to freelance editing newfound celebrity will take her, but for now
semifinalists this year. Seriously.”
A proud WVU alumna, she points out work, Sullivan satisfies her creative drive through she’s enjoying the ride.
“It’s a fun exercise for me. I don’t do it for
the absurdity of pushing kids academically her blog, which is starting to gain a following.
so they can get into the “best” schools. One Within three days of an article about her that the notoriety or the gain,” she said.
Nor does she plan on leaving “snoburbia”
of her t-shirts says, “My internship is more appeared in The Washington Post, her blog
impressive.” Another depicts an ivy leaf, received 70,000 hits, and the number of her any time soon. In fact, Sullivan, a self-described
Facebook fans rose from 98 to 332. She’s “political animal,” was recently elected to a seat
emblazoned with the statement, “I got in.”
Sullivan has many pet peeves about upper- received comments from all over the country and on the Kensington Town Council.
“I live here, and I am part of it. At the
middle class suburban life, including a particular world – mostly positive. Those critical of her
same time, I’m making fun of it.”
commentary often get a taste of her sharp wit.
aversion to food snobbery and “foodies.”
“When I go to a party . . . I can usually be
found by the potato chip bowl,” Sullivan said.
“I live on nuclear-orange Cheetos (I know, I
Scan the QR code to visit the Snoburbia blog
know) and Pepperidge Farm Sausalito cookies.
I recently proclaimed my love for Nutella on
my blog, and someone told me I was destroying
Sebastian Junger (left) and Tim Hetherington (right) talk with
guests after their public presentation at WVU in February 2011.
Acclaimed author and
photojournalist share their
experiences with students
Covering the Hot Zone
of Afghanistan
Between the two of them, veteran journalists the sense of brotherhood these men have and to
Sebastian Junger and the late Tim Hetherington have empathy for these men,” said Hetherington.
shared more than 20 years of experience covering “In the film and in our books [“WAR” and
conflicts and wars from Bosnia to Afghanistan. “Infidel”], we show the war – warts and all.”
During the time that Junger and Hetherington
However, they had never told a story from a
soldier’s perspective – that is, not until they made were embedded off and on with the Second Platoon
their award-winning documentary, “Restrepo,” and of Battle Company of the 173rd Airborne Brigade,
they essentially became soldiers. Both of the men
Junger wrote his nonfiction book, “WAR.”
“We weren’t really making a film about war,” said did five one-month trips – sometimes together,
sometimes apart. They went on every patrol. They
Junger. “We were making a film about young men.”
Documentary co-directors Junger and slept where the soldiers slept and ate where they ate.
“We became part of the fabric, part of
Hetherington spoke at the WVU Creative Arts
the platoon,” said
Center in February as
part of WVU’s David C. “We hoped to challenge people to
The only thing
Hardesty Jr. Festival of
think differently – to put a human Junger and Hetherington
Ideas. The presentation
was co-sponsored by the face on the war.” – Sebastian Junger didn’t do was carry
weapons, even though
School of Journalism’s
they were with the soldiers during multiple attacks
Ogden Newspapers Seminar Series.
Junger and Hetherington shared photos and and were both injured.
“I found combat to be so scary at first,” said
stories of the year they spent embedded with a
platoon of U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan’s Korengal Junger. “My fear dropped as my inclusion in the
Valley. They spent most of their time in the remote, group increased. I felt if I got hurt or killed out there,
15-man outpost, Restrepo, named after platoon it would be okay because I was doing something
medic Juan Restrepo who was killed during battle. that would be good for other people. I felt at peace.”
Both men agreed that although reporting on
Working as freelance journalists for Vanity Fair,
the men logged 150 hours of intense video footage of wars and conflicts is dangerous work, it’s a necessary
not only the fighting but also what civilians don’t see role for journalists. In a small-group session with
– the camaraderie, the boredom and even the humor. SOJ students in Martin Hall, Junger told students
“We hoped to challenge people to think that, in his opinion, the point of journalism is to
differently – to put a human face on the war, to get ultimately alleviate human suffering.
WVU Photo Services
“It could be human suffering in terms of
how the local school district is being run. It doesn’t
have to be on the grand scale of genocide and civil
war,” said Junger. “But you have to do it in a way
that really is impartial and neutral. It’s tricky, but
it can be done.”
Visual journalism junior Matt Sunday found
those words to be encouraging for both journalists
who want to stay close to home and others, like
himself, who want to work internationally.
“I already have the ambition as a journalist
to go to places where people don’t like to go,” said
Sunday. “For me, I’ve been looking at pictures of
Egypt non-stop for the past few weeks. Just hearing
[Junger and Hetherington] talk about throwing
themselves into an environment and going with their
gut reactions makes me want to cover something like
[Egypt] even more.”
In April 2011, Tim Hetherington was
killed while covering the civil conflict in
eastern Libya. Hetherington and three other
photographers fell under attack in the besieged
city of Misurata, Libya’s third-largest city.
At a memorial service in New York City’s
Manhattan’s First Presbyterian Church on
May 24, Junger said of Hetherington and his
work: “He went to those places with an open
heart, and he allowed those places to change
him. He was such a good journalist because
of precisely that.”
IMC students complete online master’s degree
while serving their country
As a master’s degree candidate in the School of
Journalism’s Integrated Marketing Communications
(IMC) program, Captain Christopher Siekman
of the U.S. Marine Corps does his studying in an
atypical learning environment. He logs-on, studies
and completes assignments from Helmand Province,
“I chose the WVU IMC program because of its
reputation, academic excellence and user friendliness,”
Siekman said. “The program provides just enough
guidance to structure the week but allows for
considerable autonomy to complete my coursework,
which has enabled me to further my degree while
deployed under very demanding time constraints.”
Online education has become increasingly popular
as military students look for programs that fit into their
busy lives, no matter where they are. According to a
recent report by the U.S. Government Accountability
Office, the number of service members enrolled in online
college classes has more than quadrupled since 2000,
and online courses accounted for 71 percent of military
higher education in 2009.
More than 500 veterans, military personnel and
Lance Corporal Richard Sanglap
their dependents are currently furthering their education
at WVU. The University offers hundreds of online classes,
Captain Christopher Siekman, U.S. Marine Corps, works on IMC classes at his home base in Afghanistan.
three online undergraduate degree completion programs
and more than 20 graduate degrees. WVU also employs a full-time veterans more than 22 years in public affairs in the U.S. Air Force, Greg Smith enrolled
in the program on the G.I. Bill and was a member of the first WVU IMC
advocate who serves as a one-stop-shop for veterans and military students.
In addition, WVU has been recognized nationally as having one of the graduating class in 2005.
While his combat team redeploys to the United States this year,
most veteran-friendly campuses in the United States. WVU veterans advocate
Terry Miller says that the University is dedicated to providing military students Siekman is still on track to graduate in December with only two more
courses to go. He sees great value in his IMC degree and appreciates the
and veterans the best educational experience possible.
“One of the many ways we can help current service members and fact that he found a program where he could further his education without
veterans is by providing unique, online opportunities like the IMC program having to put his life on hold.
“The IMC degree I’m obtaining is a professional degree with unlimited
so they can further their education from anywhere in the world with the
utility and potential,” Siekman said. “There is a science aspect to IMC –
same Mountaineer support they would get in Morgantown,” Miller said.
Before leaving for Afghanistan, Siekman worked with IMC program sure. But there is certainly an art to IMC that can enhance any organization’s
advising director Shelly Stump and program faculty to make sure that his efficiency and effectiveness, and I look forward to utilizing my degree in
deployment would not delay his graduation. He has successfully completed the future. I could not be more pleased with the program, and I wouldn’t
trade this opportunity for anything.”
four consecutive courses while in Afghanistan.
Siekman isn’t the IMC program’s only student serving in active duty. Faith
Thomas, former AT1(AW) in the U.S. Navy, completed her master’s degree
in 2007 while serving in Okinawa, Japan, and Whidbey Island, Wash. While
Scan the QR code to read
serving in the U.S. Army as a flight medic, Stephanie Luke “attended” class
interviews with IMC students
online and finished the program in 2009. She used her IMC skills to work with
media embeds while deployed to Afghanistan and to create her company’s
Facebook page. Major Andy Schmidt also completed his IMC degree in 2009
while serving in the West Virginia Air National Guard, having his first child
and working to help build the company iSIGHT Partners, Inc. After serving
Popular TV series helps launch graduate’s comedy career
Since starring in the hit MTV series,
“The Real World: New Orleans,”
2007 public relations graduate Eric
Patrick’s stand-up comedy career has
taken off. Patrick has performed in
venues from The Big Easy to The Big
Apple, warming up audiences for bigtime acts like Louis C.K. Learn about
his experience on the hit reality show
and how it impacted his life.
Q: How did you get your audition on “The
Real World”?
A:My lit t le bro t h e r e mai l e d M T V
pretending to be me. [The email] was the
worst! It said: “Yo, my name is Eric, but
people call me E-Money. I work for the
State Department. I’m a comedian, and I
love to party. Holla!”
What was your “character”?
What was it like to have the cameras
rolling 24/7?
The whole house was like a TV set –
cameras everywhere. The camera and
production crews could almost predict
when things were going to go down. You’d
be at home, and the cameras weren’t
really around. Then all of the sudden
they’d swoop in and [a housemate] would
scream: “Why did you eat my Cocoa
What was the audition like?
What did you like the most about being on
“The Real World”?
It was long and strenuous. If you add up
the minutes from all of the auditions, it’s
probably like nine or 10 hours. There is also
a psychological test to make sure you’re
not going to eat anyone’s ears.
You’re kind of like a guest of honor of
the city. We got to ride [a float] in the
Mardi Gras parade, which is a huge deal.
I’ve never been a VIP, before. I’m usually
just a “P.”
Tell me about your first day of taping
“The Real World.”
What didn’t you like about being on the
It was surreal. I was waiting for someone
to tell me it was a joke. I’d meet someone
and think, “Oh, he’s nice or she’s nice.
And then I’d spend a couple of days with
them, and it’s like, ohhh, that’s why he’s
here. He has issues.” I realized at the end
of the day, it’s a reality show. So they are
definitely going to have some characters
on there. [The producers] want the drama
and the tension.
The filming experience got a little
monotonous. There’s no television. There’s
only one phone. You’re kind of just trapped
in this world, and there’s no way to leave.
Photo courtesy of MTV
I wondered about that myself, but I figured
it out. I was the placebo – the “reaction”
guy. I think that maybe they were hoping
that my comedic side would come out
more, but some of my roommates were
just wacky! I couldn’t really be funny. I
was trying to make sure I didn’t go crazy!
Do people recognize you on the street?
Yeah! And I’m always amazed when people
recognize me in New York because I’m
thinking, “There are real celebrities here!
Why me?”
SOJ alumnus Eric Patrick poses for a press photo for
MTV’s “‘The Real World: New Orleans” reality show.
What did you gain from the experience?
Exposure. I’m the same comedian I was
before I went on “The Real World,” but
because of the experience, I have an agent.
I have a manager. I’m able to get gigs that
I wouldn’t have gotten had I not had the
TV credit.
How else has your stint on “The Real
World” helped your career as a comedian?
Before I was doing comedy on the side, but
now it’s my income. I get to meet a lot of
comedians I’ve always loved and never got
the chance to see in person. Since I’m doing
comedy every night in New York, they look
at me as a peer. That’s really cool.
The Young and the Ambitious
SOJ students put their skills to work before graduation
Students at the School of Journalism
aren’t waiting for graduation to begin
their careers. Several full-time students
either started a business or freelanced
this year. Teeming with ambition, they
saw opportunities in an evolving media
WVU Photo Services
marketplace and began paving their
own paths as agents of change.
Kate Ramsey
People took notice when Lindsay Bailey
began building her brand in October of her senior
year. Shortly after starting her blog, “Accessory
Obsession: and Other Fashionable Addictions by
Lindsay Bailey,” public relations agency, Dream
Cartel, contacted her about a virtual internship.
Lindsay, who graduated from the public
relations program in May, thought it was too good
to be true until she spoke to the owners of the
company, with offices in both New York City and
Los Angeles. She began writing press releases and
assisting them with event planning. She also had
the opportunity to attend a networking party for
Fashion Week 2011 in New York City.
“Getting to go to Fashion Week was
truly a life-changing experience for me,” said
Bailey. “I was so excited to get some hands-on
experience. It confirmed for me that I want
to be part of the fashion industry.”
While there, she interviewed with another
fashion PR firm, Shine Media. She landed a
social media internship and hopes to parlay it
into a permanent position. n
Armand Patella III knew from the age of
five that he wanted to be his own boss.
“I always wanted to do my own thing,” said
Patella, who graduated from the advertising
program in May. “When I told one of my good
friends about what I was doing, he reminded
me of the time that I screamed at his dad,
‘You’re not the boss of me!’”
Pa t e l l a e ve n t u a l l y c h a n n e l e d h i s
entrepreneurial spirit, and he began developing
smartphone applications for small businesses.
The idea sprang from an assignment in
Assistant Professor Dana Coester’s Direct
Marketing: Mobile Edition class. Coester asked
students to create a concept for a mobile or
tablet application (“app”), determining the
audience and ascertaining what need the app
fulfilled in the marketplace.
Patella relished the assignment and
sought help from University Relations Web
staff to take the project to the next level
and actually build the app.
After learning the process, Patella began
designing apps for real-world clients, including
a law firm in Charleston, W.Va.; a mental
health facility in Ireland; and musician and
blogger Lydia Simmons.
“What’s exciting to me is that I get to help
build something that someone is going to use every
day . . . to put something really cool in the palm
of their hand,” said Patella. “It’s a great feeling to
say, ‘Wow, I did that!’” n
Visual journalism junior Matt Sunday has
two goals as a photographer – to land his photos
on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine and in The
New York Times. While they may seem like lofty
goals, Sunday is already halfway there.
When Osama Bin Laden was killed in
May 2011, Sunday documented the reaction of
Morgantown, W.Va., residents.
The Daily Athenaeum photographer
captured a photo of former WVU Men’s
Basketball star John Flowers celebrating with
others on High Street. Two days later, The New
York Times ran the photo.
“Having accomplished that at this point is
the most rewarding thing that I’ve had happen,”
said Sunday. “I was literally in tears when I
found out about it.”
This isn’t his only accomplishment. In fall
2009, Sunday started his own business, Sundazed
Photography. While his work ranges from
portraits, news, travel destinations and sporting
events, his primary focus is concert photography.
Sunday’s Flickr account includes photos of such
artists as Cee Lo Green, Snoop Dogg, Whiz
Khalifa and Wyclef Jean.
S u n d ay s a i d h e h a s a lw ay s l ove d
photography but was inspired to make it his
career after taking an introductory photography
course with Lois Raimondo, the School’s
Visiting Shott Chair of Journalism.
“Seeing the photos she has taken in Iraq
and being around someone who has immense
experience definitely helped,” said Sunday. “I
wouldn’t look for the things I do [when taking
photographs] if I hadn’t taken her classes.” n
National Public Radio host encourages SOJ grads to “ride the wave of convergence” BY CHRISTA VINCENT
of historic convergences – of cyclical collisions
future, to take risks and to learn the technology
of politics and technology.” She highlighted
so that they can continue to tell their stories to
examples of how inventions like the penny press
the world.
and television changed the rules and how new
“No matter what you end up doing with
media is changing the rules again.
your life, you will have the tools to thrive in a
“You, my friends, are graduating in the
world that runs on the most renewable energy
middle of another historic convergence – the
source there is – information.”
biggest yet,” said Gladstone. “Our
current era of political fragmentation
is converging with a communications
technology that thrives on audience
The SOJ class of 2011 is a
Brooke Gladstone, co-host of NPR’s “On the Media,”
reflection of Gladstone’s statements – a
delivered the keynote address at the SOJ’s 2011 May
group comprised of students already
Commencement ceremony on May 15.
blazing new trails. These include
More than 200 graduates crossed the
advertising major Armand Patella III,
Morgantown Event Center stage during the
who parlayed a class project into an
School of Journalism’s 2011 Commencement
entrepreneurial effort building iPhone
Ceremony on May 15. Among them were
apps for small businesses; students
the first graduates of School’s new converged
in a public relations capstone course
Journalism major.
who used technology to develop a full
The young men and women who
campaign for a healthcare client halfway
received those degrees represent a new breed
across the world; and print journalism
School of Journalism Top Graduating Senior
of journalists – professionals equipped with
graduate Morgan Young, who is now
Candace Rose Nelson
the skills to
producing multimedia
School of Journalism Top Scholars
produce content
content at Public
“You have the best possible
Lauren Christine Riviello (Advertising)
across media
Opinion newspaper in
training to live in the world you
Marissa Dawn Statler (Broadcast News)
platforms in
Chambersburg, Pa.
Candace Rose Nelson (News-Editorial)
today’s converged are entering.” – Brooke Gladstone.
The top
Evan Coffield Moore (Journalism)
newsrooms. So, it
graduate in the new
Christina Donia Kersul (Public Relations)
was only fitting that the keynote speaker Brooke
Journalism major, Evan Moore, said he
Gladstone, co-host of NPR’s “On the Media,”
and his classmates are ready to embrace
WVU Foundation Outstanding Seniors
talked about the changing landscape of the
whatever comes their way.
Paige Lea Lavender
media industry.
“The new converged major was
Evan Coffield Moore
“You have the best possible training to live
great because I was able to take away
Candace Rose Nelson
in the world you are entering,” said Gladstone.
traditional journalism lessons while
“It’s a world where the old rules and traditional
having the flexibility to explore new
School of Journalism Top Graduating Senior
hierarchies governing media have been
fields, which better prepared me to join
Andrew D. Lewis
overthrown . . . and nowhere is this truer than in
the workforce,” said Moore.
the profession formerly known as journalism.”
Moore entered the workforce
School of Journalism Top Scholars
Gladstone engaged the audience with her
immediately following graduation,
Andrew D. Lewis (Advertising)
wit and humor as she commented that the rules
spending his summer as a web editor for
Kyrsten Elizabeth Green (Broadcast News)
of journalism are not carved in stone.
WELD, a digital marketing company
Alexander Andrew Long (News-Editorial)
“They weren’t carried down Mt. Sinai by
specializing in the outdoor adventure
Leah Lorraine Cunningham (Journalism)
Edward R. Murrow to be followed for the rest of
industry. He’ll return to campus in the
Rachel Fay Haring (Public Relations)
time,” she said.
fall as an MSJ candidate.
Gladstone told the crowd of nearly 2,000
Gladstone ended her speech by
SOJ’s top May graduates (left to right): Lauren Riviello,
Marissa Statler, Candace Nelson, Evan Moore and
that the rules of journalism are “the creation
telling graduates not to be afraid of the
Christina Kersul.
Scan the QR code to
watch Gladstone’s speech
All photos by WVU Photo Services
Clockwise from top left:
Broadcast news graduates (from left) Ashton Pellom, Tim Reid and
Brandon Ruta wait to be called to cross the stage and receive their
diplomas during the SOJ’s 2011 May Commencement ceremony.
News-editorial graduate Paige Lavender hugs Dean Maryanne Reed
after receiving her diploma.
A graduate wears a decorated mortar board thanking her mother at the
SOJ’s 2011 May Commencement ceremony.
Public relations graduate Mel Moraes hugs Dean Maryanne Reed after
receiving her diploma.
Advertising graduate Armand Patella III poses for a photo with Dr.
Sang Lee, associate professor and advertising program chair.
Public relations graduate Megan Mischler shakes hands with Dean
Maryanne Reed after receiving her diploma.
SOJ Giving Societies
In recognition of the growing importance
of private giving, the School of Journalism
honors its friends and supporters through a
tiered system of giving levels and inducts new
members each fall. Below is a list of new donors
or donors who have moved into new giving
societies during the past year.
•Ford Foundation
FRIENDS OF MARTIN HALL ($100,000 - $249,999)
•The Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation
P.I. REED CIRCLE OF FRIENDS ($25,000 - $99,999)
•McCormick Foundation
•Mr. A. Bray Cary Jr.
P.I. REED SOCIETY ($10,000 - $24,999)
•Ms. Samme Gee
•Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Izard
•Mr. Norman S. Julian
SOJ Donor Honor Roll
The School of Journalism would like to thank
our donors who have given to the 20102011 annual fund. In addition, the School of
Journalism recently established the new SOJ
Loyalty Club to recognize donors who have given
more than $1,000 to the School’s annual fund.
The annual giving list below represents cash
and pledge payments received before April 30,
2011. Loyalty Club members are indicated by
an asterisk.
$50,000 OR MORE
•Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation*
•Ford Foundation*
$15,000 - $49,999
•Mr. and Mrs. Jim Blair*
•Mr. and Mrs. Douglas Widmeyer*
•Mr. Scott D. Widmeyer and Widmeyer
$5,000 - $14,999
•Mr. Frank B. Ahrens*
•Mr. A. Bray Cary*
•Cary Foundation, Inc.*
•Joseph H. Kanter Foundation*
•The Nutting Foundation*
$1,000 - $4,999
•The Arnold Agency*
•Mr. Paul A. Atkins*
•Mr. and Mrs. Wendell Cochran*
•Mr. and Mrs. C. Michael Fulton*
•Ms. Samme L. Gee*
•Mr. and Mrs. Raymond G. Gillette Jr.*
•Mrs. Luella T. Gunter*
•Mr. Marcus Hassen*
•Mr. and Mrs. Ralph S. Izard*
•Mr. John League and Ms. April Dowler*
•Mr. and Mrs. J. Gregory Martin*
•Ms. Jane M. McNeer*
•Mr. James H. Pugh, Jr.*
•Ms. Maryanne Reed*
•Mr. Stanley J. Reed*
•Mr. James J. Roop*
•Mrs. Louise C. Seals*
•Ms. Jennifer J. Shaffron*
•Ms. Margery A. Swanson*
•Mr. and Mrs. J. Richard Toren*
•United Way of the Midlands*
$500 - $999
•Ms. Bonnie J. Bolden
•Mr. and Mrs. Thomas P. Dowling
•Mr. Stephen N. Hunsicker
•Mrs. Suzy K. Johnson
•Mrs. Pamela M. Larrick
•Mrs. Judy P. Margolin
•Ms. Johanna L. Maurice
•Dr. and Mrs. Guy H. Stewart
•Mr. Michael J. Tomasky
$100 - $499
•Mrs. Margaret D. Bailey
•Ms. Johnna G. Barto
•Mr. Paul A. Binkowski
•Mr. and Mrs. Walter C. Bird
•Mr. and Mrs. Thomas J. Birdsong
•Maj. John W. Boggess
•Mr. Daniel W. Bosch
•Mrs. Joyce A. Bower
•Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Bowles
•Mr. and Mrs. Steven K. Breeden
•Mrs. Diane Bridi
•Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation
•Mr. and Mrs. James D. Brown
•Mr. and Mrs. John H. Brown Jr.
•Mrs. Ruth C. Buchanan
•Mr. Edward O. Buckbee
•Mr. Francis B. Buckley
•Mrs. Robyn M. Buckley
•Mr. and Mrs. John A. Canfield
•Mr. Bill Clark
•Chubb & Son, Inc.
•Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc.
•Mr. and Mrs. Darrell G. Cochran
•Mrs. Janice G. Comfort
•Mrs. Catherine S. Crabtree
•Mr. and Mrs. H. Nelson Crichton
•Mr. and Mrs. Ronald L. Cutright
•Mr. and Mrs. Gary L. Davis
•Mrs. Sandra M. Desbrow
•Ms. Jane E. Duffy
•Mr. Benjamin C. Dunlap, Jr.
•Ms. Alice H. Edmondson
•Mr. Maurice R. Fliess
•Mr. and Mrs. Jay H. Fowler
•Freddie Mac Givingstation
•General Electric Company
•Ms. Ronda J. George
•Grant County Press
•Rev. and Mrs. Leonard S. Gross
•Mr. and Mrs. J. Gregory Harr
•Mrs. Suzanne M. Hornor
•Mr. J. Ford Huffman
•Mr. and Mrs. R. Douglas Huff
•Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies
•Mr. Noah C. Kady
•Mrs. Virginia G. Kavage
•Mr. and Mrs. James D. Kelly
•Mr. and Mrs. Timothy J. Kelly
•Mr. and Mrs. A. Nicholas Komanecky
•Ms. Diana H. D. Kuai
•Dr. Verda L. Little
•Mr. and Mrs. James L. Littlepage
•Dr. Brenda J. Logue
•Mrs. Dorothy H. MacQueen
•Mr. and Mrs. Victor W. Mason III
•Ms. Mary M. McDaniel
•Mrs. Robin L. Mease
•Mr. and Mrs. Harry J. Mitchell
•Ms. Christina L. Myer
•Mr. Henry C. Nagel II
•Mr. and Mrs. William J. Nevin
•Mr. Phillip D. Page
•Mr. Lance A. Parry
•Mr. Kenneth P. Pennington
•Mrs. Charlotte R. Perham
•Mr. Thomas D. Perry
•Mr. Paul J. Pysh
•Mr. and Mrs. Glenn Richards
•Mr. Robert M. Rine
•Mrs. Karen P. Robbins
•SAIC, Inc.
•Mrs. Mary L. Scott
•Mr. and Mrs. Craig L. Selby
•Mr. and Mrs. Preston L. Shimer
•Mrs. Linda Spencer
•Mr. and Mrs. Timothy J. Tewalt
•Ms. Susan W. Tice
•Mr. and Mrs. William Tiernan
•Dr. Sandra H. Utt
•Verizon Foundation
•Mrs. Kathleen S. Vincent
•Ms. Dawn E. Warfield
•Ms. Deborah Harmison White
•Mr. Seth Winter
•Mr. Bill Yahner
Four New Scholarships 2010-2011
Established at SOJ
SOJ Scholarship
During the 2010-2011 academic year, SOJ
alumni and friends contributed to the School’s
•Kelsey Amsdell
scholarship funds by establishing five new
•Evan Moore
endowed student scholarships. Thanks to their
generosity, future generations of journalism
students will continue to succeed with the
support of private giving.
•Linda Arnold (BSJ, 1976)
•Steve Morrison (BSJ, 1973)
•Mark Polen (MPA, 1982; BA, 1980)
•Col. Thomas J. Boyd (BSJ, 1971)
•Raymond (BSJ, 1971) and Susan Gillette
•Maryanne Reed, Dean
Scholarship donations are the School’s top
priority. More students than ever are in need due
to the economic climate. Private contributions
for student academic support have helped ease
the financial burden many students face.
•Christina Kersul
•Kayla Grogg
•Evan Moore
•Rachel Nieman
•Rachel Borowski
•Krista Froess
•Paige Lavender
•Shay Maunz
•Sarah O’Rourke
•Elizabeth Pietranton
•Ashleigh Pollart
•Kelsey Shingleton
•Lauren Sobon
•Victoria Stambaugh
•Rachel Taylor
•Rachel Borowski
Why I Give . . .
“Establishing the William and Jean
Reed Scholarship is a way to honor
my late parents, who gave me
strong values, a loving home and
self-confidence. In turn, it’s a joy
to share my success with the next
generation, helping our students
build a strong foundation for their
future.” – Maryanne Reed, Dean
How Do I Give?
To learn more about providing scholarship
funding, visit our website at
or contact:
•Emma Draper
•Chelsey Hathaway
•Alex McPherson
•Elyse Petroni
•Jacqueline Riggleman
•Stacey Herron
•Blair Dowler
•Brittany Furbee
•Alex McPherson
•Samantha Redd
•Katlin Stinespring
•Logan Venderlic
•Candace Nelson
•Logan Venderlic
•Blair Dowler
•Stacey Aliff
•Whitney Godwin
•Ben Hancock
•Brian Aluise
•Kelsey Amsdell
•Rachel Borowski
•Samantha Cossick
•Paul Espinosa
•Joshua Ewers
•Kayla Grogg
•Chelsea Hathaway
•Stacey Herron
•Casey Hoffman
•Christina Kersul
•Corinna Locotch
•Shay Maunz
•Amanda Moreau
•Alissa Murphy
•Sarah O’Rourke
•Matthew Peaslee
•Samantha Redd
•Daniel Sweeney
•Whitney Wetzel
•James Yaria
•Morgan Young
•Blair Dowler
•Ben Hancock
•Candace Nelson
•Samantha Redd
Luella Gunter
Director of Development
WVU P.I. Reed School of Journalism
[email protected]
During the fall 2010 semester, Associate Professor Joel
Beeson was awarded a $19,000 West Virginia Humanities Council Major Grant and a $5,000 Campus-Community LINK grant through the West Virginia Campus
Compact and WVU’s Center for Civic Engagement, for
his World War I African American memorial project
in McDowell County, W.Va. In April 2011, Beeson
presented two papers at the Broadcast Education
Association (BEA) national conference in Las Vegas,
Nev.: “Oral History and New Media” during the “Using
Oral History in the Classroom: Involving Students in
Collecting Oral Histories” panel and “The iPad as Experiential Narrative” during “The Curated Journey: New
Narrative Forms in iPad and Tablet Publishing” panel.
WVU Photo Services
April Johnston
Teaching Assistant Professor April Johnston
joined the School of Journalism faculty in
August 2010. She teaches both introductory
and advanced writing classes. Before joining
the SOJ faculty, Johnston worked for nearly 10
years writing in-depth narratives for newspapers
and magazines in Pennsylvania, North Carolina
and Ohio. She also spent a year in WVU’s office
of News and Information Services. Johnston
has won dozens of national, regional and state
awards for her work, including the inaugural Jim
Crawley Award for Regional Reporting from
Military Writers and Editors. In 2003, she traveled to Dortmund, Germany, to serve as a John
J. McCloy Journalism Fellow for the American
Council on Germany. The resulting stories
earned her a Distinguished Writing Award
from the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association.
Johnston also writes flash fiction and essays –
complete tales typically told in 1,000 words or
less. Her work has appeared in several literary
publications, including the Newport Review,
Monkey Puzzle #10 and The Mix Tape, a col-
lection by Fast Forward Press. She received her
bachelor’s degree in journalism from Duquesne
University in 2001 and her M.F.A. in creative
writing from Carlow University in 2008.
Assistant Professor Bob Britten’s article, “Picturing
Terror: Visual and Verbal Rhetoric in the 9/11 Report
Graphic Adaptation,” was published in the spring 2010
issue of the International Journal of Comic Art. Britten
had a second article published (co-authored by C. Zoe
Smith), “Acquiring Taste: Graham Nash and the Evolution of the Photography Collection,” in the fall 2010
issue of Visual Communication Quarterly. In August
2010, he presented “Remembering 9/11 Through Photos in Anniversary Editions of Impact Site Newspapers”
at the 2010 Association for Education in Journalism
and Mass Communication (AEJMC) annual conference in Denver, Colo. Britten also gave a presentation
entitled “The Blog Journalism Class: Teaching Students
to Make Toys into Tools” as part of his original panel,
“Bringing in the Audience: Social Media and New
Connections in Magazines and the News Classroom.”
In September, Britten presented on the same subject
at PodCamp: The New Media unConference in Pittsburgh, Pa.
In March 2011, Assistant Professor Dana Coester
received a $200,000 grant from the Ford Foundation for
her research in mobile media and to pilot new economic
models for community-based mobile media in rural
regions in West Virginia and nationwide. In October
2010, her paper, “Building Mobile Community,” was
presented at the National Newspaper Association’s Annual Convention & Trade Show in Omaha, Neb., as one
of the winning entries for the Huck Boyd CommunityBuilding Symposium. In December, her film, “Pretty,”
screened at the International Conference on the Image
at the University of California, Los Angeles. At the
BEA Festival of Media Arts in April 2011, Coester
received a Best of Competition award for WVU’s online
alumni magazine. In addition, she has been elected to
serve as national vice chair for the Interactive Media
and Emerging Technology division of BEA.
Assistant Professor Dr. Rita Colistra’s article, “No Bark
and No Bite: When Addressing High-profile Ethical
Code Violators, Is the Society of Professional Journalists
Mute and Toothless?” was published in the International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Vol. 5, no.
4. A second article, “Rumble and the Dark: Regional
Newspaper Framing of the Buffalo Creek Mine Disaster of 1972,” was published in Volume 16 of the Journal
of Appalachian Studies. Colistra also was awarded a
$5,000 Campus-Community LINK grant through the
West Virginia Campus Compact and WVU’s Center
for Civic Engagement to help bring extensive service
learning to the classroom through the Buy Local
Initiative with Ritchie County. In May 2011, Colistra
led a public relations workshop for the Community
Development Institute-East conference in Bridgeport,
W.Va. Colistra also served as the faculty adviser for the
award-winning student organization, Public Relations
Student Society of America.
In January 2011, Dahlia developed a workshop, “Advance Your Job Search Online and Off,” which she presented at the West Virginia State Capitol in Charleston,
W.Va., for Women’s Day at the Legislature. Dahlia
serves as the newscast professor and executive producer
of the student-produced newscast, “WVU News,”
which has won multiple awards, including BEA’s Best
of Festival King Foundation Award and top student
newscast in the country. During the April 2011 BEA
conference in Las Vegas, Nev., Dahlia served on two
panels to share her work with “WVU News”: “Election
2010 – How Schools Covered the Election and Used
Different Technologies” and “Aircheck: Student Newscasts – How to Maximize Experience and Value.”
Associate Professor Sang Lee’s paper, “Do Web Users
Care About Banner Ads Anymore? The Effects of Frequency and Clutter in Web Advertising,” was published
in the Journal of Promotion Management, Volume
16, Issue 3, in 2010. Lee co-authored and published a
second paper, “Culture and Understanding of Pictorial
Implicature Advertisements,” in the Korean Journal of
Advertising and Public Relations, Volume 11, Issue 4,
Associate Professor and Widmeyer Professor in Public
Relations Dr. Diana Martinelli’s article, “Lessons on
the Big Idea and Public Relations,” was published in
the winter 2010 issue of the Public Relations Journal.
Martinelli also authored two book chapters: “Political
Public Relations: Remembering its Roots and Classics”
in Political Public Relations: Principles and Applications, published by Routledge in spring 2011, and
“Considering Community Journalism from the Perspective of Public Relations and Advertising” in Foundations
of Community Journalism, which will be published by
Sage and is currently in press. In March, Martinelli presented her co-authored paper, with Assistant Professor
Bonnie Stewart (the lead author), “Industry Crises and
External Communications During a U.S. Coal Mine
Disaster: Theoretical and Practical Implications,” at the
International Public Relations Research Conference
in Miami, Fla. She also attended the International
Public Relations History Conference at Bournemouth
University in the UK, where she presented her paper,
“A Practical and Theoretical Look at Women’s Use of
Public Relations to Spur Early to Mid-20th Century
U.S Social Change.” Both papers were published in
conference proceedings.
Lecturer and West Virginia Uncovered project
coordinator Mary Kay McFarland expanded the West
Virginia Uncovered project in 2010 and 2011 to include
17 community newspapers. In September 2010, the
School received a $105,000 grant from the Claude
Worthington Benedum Foundation to be used during
a two-year period to continue the work of strengthening the state’s community information infrastructure by
empowering community newspapers through the West
Virginia Uncovered project. In spring 2010, McFarland
developed immersion weekend workshops during which
students traveled to a rural community and, over the
course of 72 hours, found and produced stories for the
community’s newspaper using multiple mediums for the
paper’s website. The first workshop took place in Davis,
W.Va., for The Parsons Advocate, and in the spring of
2011, students traveled to Elkins, W.Va., to work with
The InterMountain. McFarland also worked with
students and a VISTA member to engage community
members in contributing content to the Upper Big
Branch Mine disaster memorial website.
Assistant Professor Dr. Jensen Moore tied for 29th
out of the 35 individuals ranked highest in AEJMC
convention paper productivity in the spring 2010 issue
of Journalism & Mass Communication Educator. In
September 2010, she co-authored an article in the
Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media titled,
“When a Fear Appeal Isn’t a Fear Appeal: The Effects
of Graphic Anti-tobacco Messages.” In February 2011,
Moore was selected to attend the Scripps Howard
Leadership Academy hosted by the Manship School
of Mass Communication at Louisiana State University this summer. In April 2011, Moore was awarded
the 2010-2011 Golden Quill Award for Outstanding
Teaching at the School of Journalism.
In September 2010, Visiting Shott Chair of Journalism
Lois Raimondo served on the faculty of The Missouri
Photojournalism Workshop in Macon, Mo. In January
2011, she participated in the National Geographic
Photography Seminar in Washington, D.C. Raimondo,
who lived and worked full-time in Asia for 12 years,
traveled to China last summer to research opportunities
for School of Journalism students to study journalism
abroad. The result of that trip is a newly established
official exchange program between WVU and the
renowned School of Journalism at China’s Guandong
University of Foreign Studies. This summer, as part of
the International Media course, Raimondo led a group
of students on a three-week trip through China where
they visited cities, villages and media outlets.
Dean and Associate Professor Maryanne Reed’s article,
“Fighting to Hear and be Heard: The Founding of West
Virginia Mountain Radio,” was published in the spring
2011 edition of the journal, West Virginia History. Her
essay, “Leading in ‘Beta Mode,’” was published in the
Center for Creative Leadership’s “Leading Effectively”
April 2011 e-Newsletter, reaching 70,000 business
leaders across the country. In April, she served on the
West Virginia Leadership Conference’s “Leadership
Ethics” panel, representing the field of journalism. She
also participated in the Women’s Leadership Forum at
Harvard University’s School of Business in May 2011.
Reed organized and moderated the panel, “Journalism
Education Online: How to Develop and Deliver Quality Online Curricula,” at the 2010 AEJMC convention
in Denver, Colo.
Director of Graduate Studies and Assistant Professor
Steve Urbanski presented the paper, “Online Communities’ Impact on the Profession of Newspaper Design,”
co-authored by Amanda Miller, at the AEJMC
convention in Denver, Colo., in August 2010. That same
paper was published in the peer-reviewed Journal of
Electronic Publishing, Volume 13, Issue 3, in December
2010. In April 2011, Urbanski served on a panel, “New
Horizons in Study Abroad: Using Philosophy of Communication to Prepare Undergraduates for Encounters
with the Other,” at the Eastern Communication Association convention in Baltimore, Md.
Faculty Awards
Widmeyer Professor
in Public Relations
West Virginia
Foundation Award for
Outstanding Teaching
and Society Division’s Distinguished
Educator Award
Associate Professor,
Associate Dean
West Virginia
University Caperton
Award for Excellence
in the Teaching of
Teaching Assistant
Project: “The
Monongah Heroine”
Communicator Award
of Distinction for
“The Monongah
MarCom Gold Award for Best
Ava Gold Award
Associate Professor
Project: “Soldiers of
the Coalfields”
AEJMC Visual
Division’s Top Entry
in Creative Projects
Professor of the Year
In April 2011, Domenick “Mickey” Furfari (BSJ, 1948), referred to as
West Virginia’s dean of sportswriting, was inducted into the U.S. Basketball
Writers Hall of Fame, an honor bestowed on only 56 individuals since its
inception in 1988. The first West Virginian to receive the honor, Furfari has
covered the state’s athletics for more than six decades since graduating from
WVU. Although he retired from the Morgantown, W.Va., Dominion Post at
age 87, Furfari still writes columns for a syndicate of several state newspapers. He began his writing career at WVU’s student newspaper, The Daily
Athenaeum, and worked for The Associated Press in Huntington, W.Va. He
“Mickey” Furfari
later worked as the sports editor for Pacific Stars and Stripes while serving
in the U.S. Army. Before returning to Morgantown, Furfari worked as assistant
sports editor for the Charleson Gazette. In 2009, the five-time West Virginia Sports Writer of the
Year was named a Distinguished West Virginian in a ceremony with then-Gov. Joe Manchin III. In
2008, Furfari published his book, Mickey’s Mountaineer Memories, which details his observations
of modern day WVU athletic history.
n NORMAN JULIAN (BSJ, 1968) published his book,
Trillium Acres, with Trillium Publishing in 2010. The
publication is a sequel to his 1993 book, Snake Hill.
Both collections of essays chronicle the author’s 35
years living in the north central West Virginia area.
The forward for Trillium Acres was written by School
of Journalism Professor Emeritus Paul Atkins.
n ANNE BARTH (BSJ, 1979) was named executive
director of the economic development group
TechConnect West Virginia in December 2010. Prior
to this position, Barth served as state director for U.S.
Senator Robert C. Byrd.
n MICHAEL BENNETT (BSJ, 1974) is the CEO of
Iwanna USA, Inc., which offers weekly publication
classified ads. Iwanna has offices in Asheville, N.C.;
Hickory, N.C.; and Greenville, S.C.
n DARRELL COCHRAN (BSJ, 1976) received the
State Department’s Meritorious Honor Award
for his assistance to the U.S. Embassy in Cairo
in maintaining the embassy’s website during the
political unrest in January and February 2011.
Cochran is a web technology specialist for the U.S.
Department of State.
n RON CUTRIGHT (BSJ, 1974) recently retired with
34 years of service in the Departments of Defense
and Energy with domestic assignments in New York,
Texas, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Washington,
D.C., as well as foreign assignments in the Far East,
Middle East and Europe.
n GIL MEYER (BSJ, 1975) serves as the director of
global issues and crisis management at Dupont. He
currently lives in Bear, Del.
published her third novel, Blood
Clay, in March 2011. Nieman
is also the author of a collection
of short stories, Fidelities, from
WVU Press, and two earlier
novels. She has received an NEA
creative writing fellowship, two
Elizabeth Simpson Smith prizes
Valerie Nieman
in fiction and the Greg Grummer
Prize in poetry. She teaches writing at North
Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University
in Greensboro, N.C., and serves as the poetry editor
for Prime Number magazine.
n DAVID SHAW (BSJ, 1979) is a sportswriter and
columnist for The Salisbury Post in Salisbury, N.C.
1968) is a professor of journalism at the University
of Memphis.
1981) is an HIV prevention
specialist for the West Virginia
Bureau for Public Radio. He
also is the Saturday morning
announcer at West Virginia
Public Radio.
n MICHAEL TOMASKY (BSJ, 1982) joined
Newsweek/The Daily Beast in May 2011 as a special
correspondent. He also is editor of Democracy: A
Journal of Ideas. Before joining Newsweek, Tomasky
was the editor-at-large with The Guardian News &
Media’s U.S. editorial operation.
n BARBARA WESTERN (BSJ, 1989) is the director of
operations at OMB Watch in Washington, D.C., a
nonprofit government watchdog organization.
n RHETT LINDSAY (BSJ, 1999) was honored as
one of Chicago’s most influential philanthropic
leaders and received the “Who IS Chicago” award
in September 2010. The awards were presented by
Chicago Social Magazine with Raymi Productions
Dynamic Events to recognize 10 philanthropists
who have made major contributions within the
Chicago community.
n SETH MULLER (BSJ, 1997) is a professional
journalist and published author. His book, Canyon
Crossing: Experiencing the Grand Canyon from
Rim to Rim, was published by the Grand Canyon
Association in February 2011. Muller also had his
young-reader fiction series, Keepers of the Windclaw
Chronicles, published by Salina Bookshelf. He
currently lives in Flagstaff, Ariz.
is the editor at
in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Prior
to joining CBS, Tabeek worked
in newspapers for more than a
decade, including The Fayetteville
Observer, The Winchester Star and
The Journal in Martinsburg, W.Va.
Matthew Tabeek
n STEPHANIE ACKERMAN (BSJ, 2005) is the senior
coordinator of public relations and communications
at H.J. Heinz Company/Heinz North America in
Pittsburgh, Pa.
Chuck Anziulewicz
n DONNA ELLIOTT (BSJ, 1986 is the marketing
director at Martin & Jones, PLLC. She currently
lives in Garner, N.C.
n COLIN DAVID KELLY (BSJ, 1982) is a senior
communications specialist at the Air Line Pilots
Association, United Chapter. He currently resides in
Chicago, Ill.
account executive with the Knot Inc. and currently
lives in Richmond, Va.
currently enrolled in the Integrated Marketing
Communications (IMC) graduate program at the
School of Journalism. She also is a television news
producer at KDKA-TV in Pittsburgh, Pa.
n JESSICA WEHRLE CARTER (BSJ, 2003) is a selfemployed speechwriter living in Charleston, W.Va.
2005) is the director of
communications at the University
of Charleston in Charleston, W.Va.
n JOEL DANOY (BSJ, 2009) is a
reporter for The Winchester Star
in Winchester, Va.
is an account executive with Young
and Rubicam in New York, N.Y.
Scott Castleman
n ANDREW EPPERLEY (BSJ, 2007) and his
wife Becca were married last year and reside in
Richardson, Texas. Epperley is the assistant editorial
manager at Wieck Media. He also has a successful
soccer blog,, which covers Major
League Soccer in the U.S.
(MSJ, 2010; BSJ, 2008) is
a communications program
coordinator at the American
Society of Clinical Oncology in
Alexandria, Va.
is a sales and marketing associate
at Upslope Brewing Company in
Boulder, Colo.
Chairman and CEO of Widmeyer Communications Scott Widmeyer
(BSJ, 1975) was honored in November 2010 by PR News and inducted
into its 2010 Hall of Fame. Presented at the PR News’ PR People Awards
Luncheon at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., the lifetime
achievement award lauds Widmeyer as a pioneer and innovator in the public
relations field. Widmeyer has a 30-year record of providing strategic thinking to scores of decision-makers, from presidents to governors to CEOs to
union leaders. From working as a newspaper reporter in the 1970s to running major media operations for national campaigns, Widmeyer successfully
Scott Widmeyer
garners press coverage for his clients. Widmeyer founded the independent
public relations firm in 1988 after holding major communications positions with
five national leaders. Widmeyer was named a 2008 David Rockefeller Fellow and has served on the
boards of the March of Dimes, GLAAD, the Victory Fund and the School of Journalism Advisory
Committee. In 2005, he was awarded the Distinguished West Virginian award by then Gov. Bob
Wise. In 2009, Widmeyer was named to the WVU Academy of Distinguished Alumni.
n SUSAN KIMMEL-LINES (MS-IMC, 2011) is the
senior manager of Outbound Marketing at AMD,
Inc. in Austin, Texas.
n KEVIN KINKEAD (BSJ, 2007) is a writer,
producer and sports producer at CBS 3 Eyewitness
News in Philadelphia, Pa. He also writes for
Andrew Epperley
n JESSICA HAMMOND (BSJ, 2011) is currently
working as an administrative assistant at the National
Alliance for Mental Illness.
n JANET IRWIN (BSJ, 2008) is an associate producer
at WTAE Channel 4 Action News in Pittsburgh, Pa.
n BRIAN KELLEY (BSJ, 2001) is a senior account
supervisor with Hill & Knowlton in Washington, D.C.
is an associates politics editor
with The Huffington Post in
Washington, D.C.
2005; BSJ, 2003) is a public
relations manager at Martek
Biosciences Corporation,
headquartered in Columbia, Md.
Paige Lavender
n MATT MASACHI (BSJ, 2003) is a U.S. Coast
Guard Reserve Petty Officer 3rd Class. In summer
Charleston (W.Va.) Gazette reporter Ken Ward Jr. (BSJ, 1990) was
named to The Huffington Post’s “Game Changers” in the Green category
in September 2010. Recognized for his coverage of the impacts of West
Virginia’s coal industry, Ward shares the honor with U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency Administrator Lisa P. Jackson, actors Kevin Costner and
Robert Redford, comedian Stephen Colbert, and several local activists from
around the country. The Huffington Post noted the Gazette’s coverage of
the Upper Big Branch Mine disaster and Ward’s continuing reporting on
the coal industry through the newspaper’s “Coal Tattoo” blog. A native of
Ken Ward Jr.
Piedmont in Mineral County, W.Va., Ward has covered the Appalachian
coal industry for nearly 20 years. He is a three-time winner of the Scripps
Howard Foundation’s Edward J. Meeman Award for Environmental Reporting and has received
the Livingston Award for Young Journalists, an Investigative Reporters and Editors medal and an
Alicia Patterson Foundation Fellowship.
2010, he was deployed to the Gulf of Mexico for two
months in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil
spill. While assigned to the Unified Area Command
in New Orleans, he served as a media liaison and
2009) finished post-production
on the feature-length
documentary film, “The Lower
9.” She was co-director on the
project, which was shot in 2010
in the lower ninth ward of New
Elaine McMillion
is a consumer marketing intern at GolinHarris in
Washington, D.C.
2007) was promoted to senior
reporter at SC Magazine, a
business-to-business magazine for
I.T. security professionals, where
she has worked for more than
two years covering stories from
federal government cybersecurity
issues to the takedown of massive Angela Moscaritolo
cybercriminal operations.
n HEALY NARDONE (BSJ, 2002) married Dr. Emil
Nardone II and is currently living in Wheeling,
W.Va. Nardone is a former Bush White House
Senior Press Representative and Energy Press
Secretary. She is currently the owner/president of
Launch Global Media.
n RYAN PALATINI (BSJ, 2006) is a senior account
executive at pharmaceutical advertising agency Cline,
Davis & Mann in New York, N.Y.
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married fellow alumnus MATTHEW
PEARL (BSJ, 2007). They met in the
Martin Hall “reading room” during
their work-study shifts. Breanne is
a teacher for Baltimore City Public
2004) is the owner of Heather Ink
Freelance Writing in Morgantown,
Breanne &
Matthew Pearl
The School of Journalism wishes
to acknowledge our alumni who
have passed away during the year.
In memory of Robert “Bob”
Kelly and Richard Grimes
ROBERT “BOB” KELLY (BSJ, 1971) most
account executive at the Washington Speakers Bureau in
Alexandria, Va.
recently served as the managing editor for the
Charleston (W.Va.) Daily Mail. Kelly began his
career at the Daily Mail in 1974 and worked as a
in 1984 for a position at The Orlando Sentinel. In
reporter, editor and managing editor before leaving
n CARA SLIDER (MSJ, 2009; BSJ, 2006) is a public
relations specialist for Atria Senior Living Group in
Louisville, Ky.
Kelly became editor of The Parkersburg News. He
n BRANDI BONKOWSKI SMITH (BSJ, 2003) is a senior
account executive at Ketchum Public Relations in
Pittsburgh, Pa.
political editor and began his second stint as
n MATTHEW STANMYRE (BSJ, 2004) recently won an
Associated Press Sports Editors first-place award for
breaking news in the over 175,000-circulation category.
Stanmyre is a sports enterprise reporter at The Star-Ledger
in Newark, N.J.
n STEPHEN STORRIE (BSJ, 2010) is a logistics consultant
at U.S. Express Freight Systems in Landover, Md.
n KIM VITALE (BSJ, 2005) is the media supervisor at
Starcom Mediavest Group in Los Angeles, Calif.
ROBERTA L. LEE (MSJ, 1973; BSJ, 1971)
1988, he returned to West Virginia as editor of The
Intelligencer in Wheeling. After 10 years there,
rejoined the Daily Mail in 2001 as the newspaper’s
managing editor in 2004. Former West Virginia
Governor Arch Moore and host of Metro News
“Talk Line,” Hoppy Kercheval, gave eulogies at
Kelly’s service. Kelly passed at age 60 in June 2010.
Before his retirement in 1999, former Daily Mail
political editor RICHARD GRIMES (BSJ, 1961)
ALICE P. MAY (AB, 1938)
covered West Virginia politics for more than 30
Mail staff in 1964, first as a reporter and then
years. Grimes joined the Charleston (W.Va.) Daily
n ANDREW WOROB (BSJ, 2005) was promoted from
account supervisor to manager of
digital communications at Ruder
Finn, Inc. in New York, N.Y. In
addition, his blog, “PR at Sunrise,”
was ranked as a top-20 PR blog by
rising through the ranks to become its top political
congressional delegation. His longtime column,
worked briefly as a reporter for the Wheeling
n MORGAN YOUNG (BSJ, 2011) is a
reporter for the Chambersburg Public
Opinion in Chambersburg, Pa.
Army and serving as a special agent in intelligence
Morgan Young
writer, covering state politics for West Virginia’s
“Capitol Letter,” was carried by newspapers across
the state. Prior to his Charleston career, Grimes
(W.Va.) Intelligencer before entering the U.S.
assigned to the National Security Agency. Grimes
died at age 71 in February 2011.
This summer, the IMC program hosted
its first annual INTEGRATE conference,
featuring networking opportunities,
interactive workshops and 18 different
breakout sessions led by industry
experts on the hottest topics in
marketing communications.
Here is what a few people had to say:
@jenlynn881 – Lawyers have CLE's; CPA's
have CPE's, but as a marketer, what do YOU do
to keep your edge? Here's a step towards my
edge: “#integrate2011”
@nicolehagy – New friends, new skills & new
knowledge thanks to @wvuimc weekend!
– Many thanks to everyone involved in making
Integrate 2011 one of the best professional
development experiences I have ever had. I
look forward to next year!
Presented by:
June 1-2, 2012
Morgantown, W.Va.
Save the date and join us next year for
INTEGRATE 2012. Find your focus. Find
yourself. Get INTEGRATED.
West Virginia University
PO Box 6010
Morgantown, WV 26506-6010
(304) 293-3505
[email protected]
Address Service Requested
Non-profit Org.
U.S. Postage
Morgantown, WV
Permit No. 34

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