Journalism Is Not Dead, It's Changing
IU School of Journalism to Close
The journalism industry might not be dead, but if the Board of Trustees and university president approves it, the famous Indiana University School of Journalism will be.
IU Provost Lauren Robel recently approved plans to merge the nationally-renowned school of journalism with the telecommunications and communication and culture departments. The absorption of the journalism school in the College of Arts and Sciences would mean more than journalism students losing their building.
It would be a loss of a one of the best journalism schools in the country, a loss of journalistic independence and a loss of history.
But, according to IU President Michael McRobbie in a July interview with the Herald-Times, "There's no point in saving a school that trains people to manage fleets of horses if the motorcar has taken over horse-drawn transportation."
Many at IU are outraged. Concerns about what this means for journalism school programs and other funding for student media are widespread. Protests have hit Facebook and IU's campus, urging administration to recognize that journalism isn't dead, it's just in a state of change.
It's a change we've felt here at The DePauw as well. Printing on a bi-weekly basis has proven to be financially difficult, and, within the next year or two, a jump to online-only content is undoubtedly on the horizon of possibility.
And as much as we hate to see that happen, as the journalism industry changes, student journalists have no option but to change, too. As upsetting as a loss of history may be and as uncomfortable as it may be to change valued traditions, change is not something the world of journalism is unfamiliar with.
Perhaps it's better to look at these changes with ambition and an eye for possibilities. Perhaps journalism is merely transforming -- the lines between print, radio and television are being blurred.
As liberal arts students this is something we can handle. As student journalists at DePauw, we don't have an independent J-school nor do we have the option to major in journalism. Our learning stems from our experiences from a liberal arts education, internships and creating our very own newspaper, twice every week. We are just as competitive in the journalism career sphere as they are. We have sent students to do internships at major daily newspapers all over the country -- The Salt Lake Tribune, The Oregonian, The Wall Street Journal. We have alumni who now work at The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune and The Los Angeles Times to name a few.
So, though the merging of Indiana University's School of Journalism with the College of Arts and Sciences would undoubtedly be a hit to the journalistic world, it's not one that they can't take. It will be different, but that's what the field is coming to. Journalism may be changing, but we as journalists won't be going away any time soon.
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