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DePaul journalism students, Univision team up

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A select group of journalism students from DePaul and local high schools will work with Univision as part of an effort to focus in on the Hispanic community as well as cover the midterm elections. (Photo courtesy of Seth Anderson)

A select group of journalism students from DePaul and local high schools will work with Univision as part of an effort to focus in on the Hispanic community as well as cover the midterm elections. (Photo courtesy of Seth Anderson)

To help regenerate an interest in news to millennials, the Robert R. McCormick Foundation has provided a $20,000 grant for DePaul journalism students and high school journalism students to team up with Univision Chicago, a news station geared towards Spanish speakers.

“Univision is interested in what the millennial has to say, so they are using different age groups to provide a millennial perspective to Univision,” said Cristina Benitez, Director of Latino Media & Communication for the DePaul University College of Communication.

The project has two central points: focusing in on Hispanic communities in Chicago and covering the upcoming midterm elections. Utilizing modern day technology, the journalism students will interactively cover both the social and cultural aspects of the Latino neighborhoods, as well as the political process.

“This is an opportunity for us to see social and cultural issues in Chicago neighborhoods through the eyes of a much younger audience,” said Teri Arvesu, Univision Chicago News Director. “The experience is two-fold in learning; they learn from us and us from them.”

Picking the journalism students was a selective task. The five DePaul journalism students were chosen according to their course work qualifications and passion to share a voice in their community.

The high school journalism students were familiar with DePaul prior to working on the program. They were also involved in the weeklong workshop, “Pasos al Futuro (Steps to the Future),” that was also funded by The Robert R. McCormick Foundation. The intensive workshop included coverage of a story in a variety of media.

Five out of the 35 best journalism students in the program were picked to collaborate with the DePaul journalists on the new project for Univision.

“I am most excited to gain experience from collaborating with the DePaul journalism students,” said high school participant Marimar Gutierrez. “I think that is the most valuable way of learning.”

During the first phase of the program, the students will report on social and cultural topics within local Chicago neighborhoods.

“Some live in the neighborhoods, but even if they do not, they are really learning about the Chicago Latino neighborhoods” Benitez said. “They are going to places they heard of for such a long time, but they have never been to.”

In an instant gratification generation, many students are on the go and do not have time for long news pieces. However, the reports are “snackable content for broadcast, they are very short stories from thirty seconds to a minute,” Benitez said.

Their stories will be published in a digital portion of “En Tu Barrio (In Your Neighborhood)” on Univision’s local online-only newscast.

In the second phase of the program, the journalism students will cover the midterm elections. They will uncover every component that makes up the political process, including attending the political debates.

“The second phase of this program will allow these students to witness how a station puts together election coverage and they will witness the creative and editorial process of preparing for debates with the gubernatorial and senatorial candidates and election season,” Arvesu said.

The Robert R. McCormick foundation’s financial contributions to this program will not only benefit the young journalists with news literacy, but also the young population as a whole. The program aims to encourage the millennials to spend less time on their social media skills and more time on their news literacy. It is possible that these young journalists will be seen on Univision in the future.

“I am always scouting talent. There are several students who have really stood out with their work,” Arvesu said. “Those are names that neither I nor my team of managers who have been working with these fellows, will forget.”

1 Comment

One Response to “DePaul journalism students, Univision team up”

  1. Jonah Camberg on October 1st, 2014 12:53 pm

    Excellent article!! very interesting.

    [Reply]

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




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DePaul journalism students, Univision team up