Journalism Degree Program Overview
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. '48 once said, "education must enable one to sift and weigh evidence, to discern the true from the false, the real from the unreal, and the facts from the fiction."
While defining the importance of education, Dr. King also could have been writing journalism's mission statement. Those principles have not changed. However, in the 15 years of Morehouse's journalism program, the discipline has become a rapidly evolving multimedia environment that has chopped down the past's print, broadcast, and photographic silos. Founded by famed filmmaker Spike Lee '79 and the late ESPN sports columnist Ralph Wiley, our program began strictly as a print program with an emphasis on sports. We then added courses that focus on innovative storytelling using visual journalism, audience development, arts and entertainment, and data applicable to sports, arts and entertainment, and social justice.
The Journalism and Sports Program progressed from a concentration to a minor in English. In July 2021, the program was approved as a major and renamed Journalism in Sports, Culture, and Social Justice to address the needs of student journalists who require media and technological literacy, along with innovation.
The following are the learning outcomes of the journalism program:
- Writing will become clearer, more concise, and better organized
- Critical thinking, interviewing, and news analysis skills will improve
- Skilled usage of photography, video, and audio as storytelling tools
- Real-world exposure to professional journalists through internships, conferences, and covering events
- Comfort in using social media as reporting tools and contact platforms
- Awareness of historic and contemporary racial dimensions of sports
As a minor, the journalism program produced more than 90 students working in media, sports, or related industries. They have taken jobs with newspapers, websites, magazines, television stations, advertising firms, corporate marketing and public relations, and sports journalists and media relations professionals.
More than 40 of our students have obtained master’s degrees in journalism. Others used their journalism background as a springboard to law school and graduate study in psychology, sports management, fine arts, film study, political science, theology, and other fields.
Journalism's positive contributions to Black people date back to at least 1827 when Freedom's Journal was printed as the first Black-owned and operated newspaper in the United States. Journalism's influence took on new heights during the post-World War II civil rights movement.
"If it hadn't been for the media – the print media and television – the civil rights movement would have been like a bird without wings, a choir without a song," civil rights icon Congressman John Lewis said in the closing words of the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalism classic "The Race Beat" by Gene Roberts and Hank Klibanoff.
Minor in Journalism, Sports, Culture, and Social Justice
Every Morehouse student can benefit from the journalism minor, regardless of his major. The minor provides a broad foundation in multimedia journalism. Even if a student doesn’t want to become a journalist, his writing will become clearer, more concise, and better organized. Those are valuable assets in the professional world, whether writing a legal brief, an enlightening sermon, a compelling marketing brochure, a dramatic ending to an NBA Finals game, or a critical grant proposal for STEM research.
Through our courses, the student will benefit in the following ways:
- Learn to write with fewer words that make a bigger impact on readers
- Critical thinking, grammar, and punctuation skills will improve
- Introduction to multimedia platforms and technology
- Improved communications skills applicable to any profession