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UAlbany Adds Faculty, Courses to Expanding Journalism Program

Contact: Karl Luntta (518) 437-4980

ALBANY, N.Y. (August 23, 2004) -- The University at Albany's Journalism program has added two new courses and two full-time faculty members for the fall and spring semesters as it moves toward building the University's journalism curriculum into a major.

"The two new courses in fall 2004 are part of the journalism program’s continuing efforts to offer students the most contemporary training in journalism reporting, writing, and analysis as applied across a wide array of media fields," said William Rainbolt, director of journalism at UAlbany.

“Public Affairs Reporting,” will be taught by Mike Hendricks, editor of The Business Review and former reporter, editor, and bureau chief for The Associated Press. The course is intended to give students a chance to study and report on the presidential campaign locally, as well as other areas of public affairs journalism. Another course, “Broadcast Journalism,” will be taught by David Guistina, special projects director for WAMC Radio and former news producer at WNYT-TV, Channel 13, and will emphasize broadcast journalism at the local market level.

In addition to the new courses, Thomas Bass and Nancy Roberts will join the journalism program in 2004-2005.

Bass is a professional journalist, author of five nonfiction books and numerous articles in such magazines as The New Yorker, Wired, Smithsonian, Audubon, and Discover. Several of his books have been included in the “Notable Books of the Year” listings by The New York Times, and have been translated worldwide. The books cover science and popular culture (The Eudaemonic Pie, Reinventing the Future, The Predictors); travel and exploration (Camping with the Prince and Other Tales of Science in Africa); and politics (Vietnamerica). He holds a doctorate from the University of California at Santa Cruz and comes to UAlbany from Hamilton College. He will join the faculty in January 2005.

Nancy Roberts moves to the UAlbany journalism program from the University of Minnesota's School of Journalism and Mass Communication, where she has been director of undergraduate studies and honors adviser. A former president of the American Journalism Historians Association, Roberts is the author of four books and the coauthor of The Press and America: An Interpretive History of the Mass Media, the most widely used survey textbook of American media history. Her books include American Catholic Pacificism: The Influence of Dorothy Day and the Catholic Worker Movement; American Peace Writers, Editors, and Periodicals: A Dictionary; As Ever Gene: The Letters of Eugene O’Neill to George Jean Nathan; and Dorothy Day and the Catholic Worker. Roberts received her doctorate from the University of Minnesota, and will join the journalism program in fall 2004.

The University expects to inaugurate a journalism major in the 2005-2006 academic year. To advise on the development of the program and to assist in identifying funding opportunities, College of Arts and Sciences Dean Joan Wick-Pelletier formed a Journalism Advisory Board of prominent professionals involved journalism and the communications media, several of them UAlbany alumni. Board members include Robert Bellafiore ('82), director of public relations at Eric Mower Associates; Edward Dague, former news anchor for WNYT; Stuart F. Hancock III, Eagle Newspapers publisher; Dianne Kennedy, president of the New York Newspaper Publishers Association; Marc Z. Kramer ('77), senior vice president for circulation at The New York Times; Susan Pinkus ('68), the Los Angeles Times' director of polling; Michelle Rea, executive director of the New York Press Association; Rex Smith, Albany Times Union editor; and the publisher of the Elmira Star Gazette, Monte Trammer.

"I am gratified that such an excellent and eminent group of people has volunteered to assist and advise me in building this program," said Dean Wick-Pelletier. "The Capital area is a natural location for the development of a first rate journalism program. I sense a public interest in this as well as a national need."


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