JCamp is the Asian American Journalists Association‘s national multicultural journalism program for high school students that has been held every summer since 2001.
The students selected demonstrate a keen interest in broadcasting, newspapers, magazines, photojournalism or online media. This program is open to high school freshmen, sophomores and juniors of all ethnicities. There is no fee to apply, and all costs are covered — including travel, lodging and meals. Students stay in university housing during the camp week.
JCamp’s goal is to develop the next generation of journalists. This six-day training camp brings together a multicultural group of high school students from across the nation to sharpen their journalism skills and work together in a unique learning environment. The curriculum consists of interactive workshops, hands-on training and field trips. The students also work on a blog that showcases their JCamp skills: JCamp Live.
JCamp strives to help ensure excellence in the profession for decades to come by confronting the lack of diversity in journalism, not just in race, but also in matters of religion, political viewpoints, socioeconomics and other factors. With diversity in 21st-century newsrooms, the audience gets different views on city governments, human interest stories, entertainment and recreation, science and medicine, and national and international news.
The JCamp curriculum focuses on teaching and ingraining the following core principles:
- Diversity in newsrooms and media coverage: An appreciation for diverse viewpoints and reporting in diverse communities. Students learn why it is important that the media reflect the communities they cover.
- Journalism ethics: An understanding of the universal ethics of good journalism and the responsibilities of the media to cover communities with fairness, sensitivity and high standards.
- Networking and career mapping: Regardless of a student’s eventual career choice, an understanding of how to pursue a profession and an appreciation for the importance of networking and building relationships with mentors and peers.
JCamp speakers (and their roles at the time) have included Tim Russert, managing editor and moderator of “Meet the Press”; Ed Bradley, correspondent for “60 Minutes”; Carl Bernstein, Pulitzer Prize-winning Watergate reporter; Aaron Brown, CNN anchor; James Colton, Sports Illustrated photography editor; Leonard Downie Jr., Washington Post executive editor; Hoda Kotb, “Dateline NBC” correspondent; Atoosa Rubenstein, Seventeen magazine editor in chief; Carole Simpson, ABC News senior correspondent; Arthur Sulzberger Jr., New York Times publisher; Helen Thomas, Hearst Newspapers Washington columnist; and Brian Williams, “NBC Nightly News” anchor and managing editor.
JCamp received a 2012 Diversity Award Honorable Mention from the Journalism Education Association for “its commitment to promoting diversity in the scholastic media arena.”
This year’s JCamp will be in New Orleans at Loyola University from June 19-24. The program will be in conjunction with the National Association of Black Journalists’ annual convention. Scheduled speakers include Anders Gyllenhaal, Washington editor for the McClatchy Co.; Mara Schiavocampo of NBC News; Byron Pitts, chief national correspondent for “CBS Evening News”; and Hoda Kotb, “Today” co-anchor and “Dateline NBC” correspondent.
AAJA and JCamp would like to thank the following for making this year’s program possible: Annie E. Casey Foundation, Bloomberg, CBS, CNN, Dow Jones News Fund, Dow Jones Foundation, Google, Loyola University New Orleans, National Association of Black Journalists, Southwest Airlines, Star Tribune staff, New York Times and AAJA members. We offer special thanks to USA Today and AAJA’s Florida Chapter.
For more information, please contact AAJA Student Programs Coordinator Nao Vang at 415-346-2051, Ext. 102, or email@example.com.