Foundation supports visiting business journalism professor

Penn State will host a visiting business journalism professor in spring 2015 under an Arizona State University program funded by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation.

This is the fourth year the foundation has funded business journalism professors at universities to encourage development of stronger business journalism education. The $1.67 million grant is administered through the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism at ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

The five-year program will ultimately create 11 visiting professorships at 11 different schools.

“This grant gives us the boost we need to develop a strong business reporting program, and having a Reynolds visiting professor here for a semester will help us develop a curriculum that will be forward-thinking, relevant and appealing to students,” said Marie Hardin, professor and associate dean for undergraduate and graduate education in the College of Communications at Penn State.

The College of Communications has already started to share information about the professorship, and prospective professors may apply online

“One of our goals in funding this grant was to broaden the reach of the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism into other institutions across the country,” said Steve Anderson, president of the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation. “This year, another grantee will join the existing cadre of institutions that will be able to enhance and expand their ability to teach the principles and skills necessary to train the next generation of business journalists.”

In addition to teaching courses in business journalism in the spring 2015 semester, the visiting professor helps establish partnerships with local media and contributes to the website. Host schools, which also are eligible for funding for business journalism internships and visits by business journalists, provide space as well as technical and administrative support for the professors.

All schools in the program commit to continue teaching business journalism after the grants conclude.

In spring 2014, visiting professors are at California State-Fullerton and the University of Oklahoma. In 2013, visiting professors taught at Central Michigan, Elon and Louisiana State universities. The first business journalism visiting professors taught in spring 2012 at Colorado State University, Grambling State University, the University of South Carolina and Texas Christian University.

Since 2003, more than 20,000 journalists have learned to cover business better through free training from the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism. The center also provides free regional workshops and webinars, as well as daily tips on how to cover business better on its website. It is funded by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation, a national philanthropic organization founded in 1954 by the late media entrepreneur for whom it is named.

Last Updated March 24, 2014