Archive | JMC Dept.

PR 360 focuses on advertising, PR students

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


Dr. Bob Davies, president, Murray State University, welcomed attendees to the department’s PR 360 program on March 30. The day-long event provided a variety of workshops, seminars and career-related activities primarily for public relations and advertising students.


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Ads Club participates in NSAC

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


Members of the MSU Ads Club wait their turn to present in the district round of the 2016 National Student Advertising Competition operated by the American Advertising Federation.  The competition assignment asked AAF college chapters across the U.S. to develop a marketing and advertising plan that sells Snapple tea and fruit drinks in the Midwest, South and West.  Pictured are presenters (from left) Alex Scira, Kiara Austin, Austin Gordon, Rick Elver, and Jacquelyn Patterson.  


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Gravure Day brings professionals to campus

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


Stephanie Masco, director of content development, Savant Learning Systems, Inc., was one of the speakers for Gravure Day on April 1. This annual event gives graphic communications media students the opportunity to learn from industry professionals.


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The News nominated for Pacemaker

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


The Murray State News was recognized at the ACP conference as a nominee for the Pacemaker Award. Representing The News at the conference was Stephanie Elder, adviser; Ashley Traylor, staff writer; Gisselle Hernandez, features editor; and Connor Jaschen, editor in chief.


The Murray State News was recognized in October as one of the top collegiate newspapers in the country.

The News was named one of 30 finalists for the coveted Pacemaker award from the Associated Collegiate Press (ACP). ACP gives the award out to four categories of publications: online, newspaper, yearbook and magazine. Teams of professionals judge the entries based on coverage and content, quality of writing and reporting, leadership, design, photography and graphics, according to the ACP website.

This is not the first time the student publication has been recognized for this top honor. The Murray State News won the Pacemaker award in 2004 and was last nominated in 2006.

The work of the 2015-16 staff of The Murray State News puts the newspaper in the top 1 percent in the United States, according to the Associated Collegiate Press.

Connor Jaschen, editor-in-chief, Gisselle Hernandez, features editor, Ashley Traylor, staff writer, and Stephanie Elder Anderson, faculty adviser, represented Murray State at the ACP national conference in Washington in October to accept the finalist award.

The News representatives attended dozens of sessions at the conference as well as toured the White House and the Newseum.

They also had the opportunity to hear speakers such as Donna Brazile, Democratic National Committee interim chairwoman, Bob Woodward, one of the two journalists responsible for breaking the Watergate scandal, and Edward Snowden, the former intelligence officer who revealed in 2013 that the NSA was seizing private records of billions of U.S. citizens.

Stephanie Elder Anderson met Bob Woodward at the ACP national conference.


Jaschen, Traylor and Hernandez toured the White House as part of the conference events


After listening to Washington Post journalist, Bob Woodward speak, Elder Anderson was honored to meet the award-winning author and have him sign her copy of All the President’s Men, a book she uses to teach investigative journalism in her courses.

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Students study health issues

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal

Students in JMC 597 Advanced Reporting delved into the world of health care reporting for their spring and fall 2016 projects.

The spring 2016 class examined the challenges far western Kentuckians face when dealing with health insurance. Stories ranged from newsfeatures about people who could not afford insurance premiums to podcasts about recent action by the state legislature regarding several health care bills. Their site is health.mymurraystate.com.

The fall 2016 class undertook the challenge of examining mental health resources in far western Kentucky. Students produced newsfeature stories, podcasts and multimedia in-depth stories on their site: mental.mymurraystate.com.

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Shooting survivor gives perspective on media coverage

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


Missy Jenkins-Smith, front left, visited the Reporting for Broadcast and Online Media class to give her perspective on dealing with the media following a traumatic event.


“I choose to be happy,” tells the story of Missy Jenkins-Smith being shot in the Heath High School shooting in 1997 and how she has since overcome the tragedy.

Jenkins-Smith was one of the five students injured in the shooting and author of the book, “I choose to be happy.” She was shot in the shoulder, where the bullet grazed her spinal cord, paralyzing her from the chest down.

Dec. 1, 1997 changed Missy’s life, but she chose happiness in the midst of the trauma.

Students in the JMC 398 Reporting for Broadcast and Online Media course spent the last few weeks of the fall semester learning about trauma journalism.

Jenkins-Smith visited the class to tell her story as well as give her perspective on what it was like dealing with the media as a survivor during a traumatic event.

She said when she was leaving Lourdes Hospital and being transferred to another facility, she had to have two police officers guarding her.

“I remember being attacked by the media as they were trying to pull me on a stretcher from the hospital to the MRI.”

It was not just her that endured the media frenzy but her family as well.

“As she (her sister) was leaving the hospital, a cameraman got in her face and said-tell us what’s going on,” Jenkins-Smith said. “I wish they would have just given me space…realizing personal space is one of the big, big things.”

She detailed another event with a major talk show host.

“I felt like a news story and that was upsetting,” Jenkins-Smith.

Although she shared negative experiences with students on what not to do in traumatic situations, Jenkins-Smith also described some of the positive encounters with the media.

She recalled Charlie Gibson from Good Morning America as being compassionate and not just worried about getting the top story.

“He seemed like a person… it wasn’t just about the news story,” Jenkins-Smith said.

She gave advice to the students about how to best deal with trauma survivors and victims.

“I felt like some of those people (journalists) that had been in it (journalism) for so long lost that part and it wasn’t about the person anymore…remember they are people too,” she said.

Jenkins-Smith is a Murray State alumnus who married her college sweetheart, Josh in 2006. They have two children, Logan and Carter.

She is a school counselor in Murray and continues to speak to students of all ages around the country about her story, gun violence and bullying.

“Having Missy speak during our class was very inspiring,” Alicia Steele, JMC 398 student said.

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Broadcasting students visit WPSD

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


JMC 398 Reporting for Broadcast and Online Media students visited WPSD Local 6 in Paducah to get a first-hand look at how a news station operates. The field trip was another example of the department’s emphasis on experiential learning.


Students in JMC 398, Reporting for Broadcast and Online Media, visited WPSD Local 6 in October as part of the department’s experiential learning.

Students had the opportunity to watch the 6 p.m. newscast live in the studio as well as in the producer’s booth giving them a first-hand look at how a news station operates.

Students toured the newsroom and talked with station employees.


Students were able to try out the set’s green screen.


Kelsey Grapperhaus, senior journalism major from Troy, Illinois, said the experience brought what she has learned in the classroom to life.

“Visiting WPSD gave me a real-life perspective on what it’s like to be a journalist in the broadcasting field,” Kelsey Grapperhaus said. “I was able to gain hands-on experience that I could not have gotten behind the desk.”

After the newscast, anchor, Jennifer Horbelt spent time answering questions from students and sharing her path from college to a career in journalism. Reporters, producers and photographers took a few minutes out of their night to discuss their roles at the station and took questions from the students.

Stephanie Elder Anderson, course instructor and former WPSD employee, also gave the students a tour of the station.

In the course, students learn how to report for broadcast news as well as online media. From creating news packages to utilizing additional story elements for news websites and social media, students produce content they can add to their portfolios.

Elder Anderson has been taking students to WPSD as part of this course for the last four years.

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Grad students display research in University poster sessions

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal

Graduate students in two courses taught by assistant professor Dr. Melony Shemberger presented their research during the university’s Scholars Week in both the spring and fall.

During the spring Scholars Week, held in April 2016, all 12 of her students in JMC 620 Strategic Communications presented their work in the general poster session that was held at the Curris Center. 

Two of those students won awards for their posters. The general poster session had two divisions — sciences and humanities. Iqra Ilyas won first place for her poster on public relations pioneer Betsy Plank, and Alex Hilkey won second place for her historical research on advertising executive Helen Lansdowne Resor. 

At the fall Scholars Week, Nov. 14-18, four graduate students in JMC 615 American Media History presented their papers and posters that focused on issues, topics or profiles in U.S. media history.

Students and the titles of their research included the following:
— JoAnna Anderson: “Nellie Bly: Mad-House Muse Paving the Way for Modern-day Muckrakers”
— Jennifer (Duck) Brown: “The Press and the Presidency: Analysis of Press Access From the Watergate Era to the 2016 Presidential Election”
— Benjamin Fincher: “Have We Become an Accumulative Media Culture Instead of a Mass Media Culture”
— Kiaya Young: “Female Empowerment and Propaganda in World War II”

The fall Scholars Week did not offer a poster contest. However, after Scholars Week, the posters remained on display to serve as examples for other students to use as standards in poster presentations and contests.

“Some of these posters would have also been real contenders had there been a poster contest,” said A.J. Boston, scholarly communication librarian who helped to organize Scholars Week, in an email sent to students and faculty.

Shemberger said she seeks ways to encourage her graduate students to present their work.

“I want to make sure that graduate students have an opportunity to share their research or creative activity outside the classroom in a conference-like setting,” she said. “This gives the students a presentation credit in their portfolio and encourages them to present at conferences.”

Shemberger’s 16 graduate students from both courses now have a presentation credit on their resume. Prior to Scholars Week, they had not presented their work in any kind of formal, academic setting outside of class.

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Department welcomes high school students to campus

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


Area high school students interested in mass communications came to campus on Sept. 23 for a morning of training in the department’s annual High School Student Media Workshop. A variety of learning sessions was provided for students interested in journalism, yearbooks, advertising or videography. One session focused on collect video footage on campus and using it for a mock TV show.


The department’s annual High School Student Media Workshop attracted more than 340 students from 12 area high schools.

Schools attending this year’s workshop were: Ballard County, Caldwell County, Calloway County, Crittenden County, Fort Campbell, Graves County, Mayfield, McCracken County, Murray, Paducah Tilghman, St. Mary, and Trigg County.

The Sept. 23 workshop began with greetings from Dr. Tim Todd, dean, Arthur J Bauernfeind College of Business, and Dr. Debbie Owens, interim chair, Dept. of Journalism and Mass Communications.

Workshop director Leigh Wright announced the winners in the student media contest. Click here to watch the contest winner announcement which was played as part of the Workshop’s opening assembly.

The workshop was divided into three sessions with a variety of options for each session. Students and teachers were able to attend classes on advertising design and writing, feature writing and interviewing, writing effective headlines, sports still photography, latest trends in memory books, getting started with writing, InDesign basics, video field production, lighting, sports media production, on-camera interviewing and presentation, TV studio production, advertising sales, careers in the media, sports writing and reporting, social media, getting started with WordPress, finding story ideas, evaluating news sources for stories, looking good in print, writing on a deadline, broadcast announcing, writing effective news leads for print, broadcast & online, and a session for advisers.

JMC faculty and staff teaching in the workshop included: Gill Welsch, Dr. Robert H. McGaughey III, Dr. Melony Shemberger, Gross Magee, Brent Norsworthy, Dr. Kevin Qualls, Stephanie Elder Anderson, Chris Haynes, Dr. Debbie Owens, Elizabeth Thomas, and Orville Herndon.

Andrew Buehler and the Jostens staff presented three classes on yearbook trends. Jeremy McKeel and the Digital Media Services team presented several TV classes. Several JMC students hosted classes related to writing.

The 2017 workshop is scheduled for Sept. 22.

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Seniors meet mass communication professionals

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


Area media professionals met with JMC seniors in October. Pictured front row, from left, Alichia Sawitoski, Dr. Debbie Owens, Bob Norsworthy, Tab Brockman, Matt Wilham, Jamie Futrell, Lauren Ruser, back row from left, Denham Rogers, Roger Seay, David Snow, Bob Crosno, Chad Darnall, Lori Barrett, and Gary Gresham.


Seniors in the JMC department had an opportunity to meet and talk with professionals in their major. The department’s annual Meet the Pros event was held in the Curris Center on Oct. 27. Students attended a panel discussion related to their major. Following the discussion students participated in a speed interviewing session with visiting professionals.

The advertising professionals participating in the 2016 program were: Bob Crosno, local sales manager, WPSDLocal6, Paducah; Jamie Futrell, general manager, Bristol Broadcasting, Paducah; Robert Norsworthy, executive in residence, Murray State University; Alichia Sawitoski, director of digital marketing, ParkWhiz, Chicago; and Matt Wilham, junior strategist, Bisig Impact Group, Louisville.

Denham Rogers, advertising assistant, at Hutson, Inc., Murray, spoke with Graphic Communications Media majors.

Journalism majors met with Lori Barrett, news assignment manager, WPSD-TV, Paducah; Roger Seay, news director, KFVS-TV, Cape Girardeau, Mo.; and David Snow, editor, The Murray Ledger & Times, Murray.

Public Relations students attended a panel discussion led by Tab Brockman, superintendent, Hopkinsville (Ky.) Parks & Recreation Dept. and Lauren Ruser, digital marketing specialist, Second Street, St. Louis, Mo.

Television Production majors heard from Chad Darnall, photojournalist, WPSDLocal6, Paducah, and Gary Gresham, owner, Gresham Media, Paducah.

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