NGO turns to universities to build next generation of African multimedia journalists
Originally posted at: https://www.ugandapartners.org/2022/10/ngo-turns-to-universities-to-build-next-generation-of-african-multimedia-journalists/
By Asenath Were
As part of activities to get fellows for its next cohort in the hands-on journalism skills training, the Media Challenge Initiative (MCI), a non-profit organisation, in September spent three days imparting media skills on the students of Uganda Christian University (UCU).
The workshop, which took place from September 22-24 at the main/Mukono campus in Nkoyoyo Hall, targeted students of the UCU School of Journalism, Media and Communication, from whom the next generation of journalists in Africa can be built. The students were taught how to use smartphones as pocket studios to shoot, edit, and produce compelling stories. Also, part of the training was to introduce participants about how to tailor programs into highly engaging, entertaining and informative youth participatory radio shows that attract and retain audiences.
The Head of Training at MCI, Antonio Kisembo, who delivered the mobile journalism training to the students, said they are looking for “a person who can report stories, a person who can anchor, a person who can write, a person who can take photos and a person who can write online.”
Kisembo said their intention is for the journalist to have multi-media skills, explaining further: “We do three days, the first day is mobile journalism reporting, which is essentially television storytelling.”
Kisembo noted that on the second day, the team engages the students in “preceptory radio,” and on the third day, “we have the mobile newsroom auditions, where we identify a team that will represent each university at the national newsroom contest.” The national contest, also called the Inter-University Media Challenge, is expected to take place in November.
The aim of the challenge, according to MCI, is to create journalists who are “critical participants in changing the negative narrative about Africa.”
To qualify for the challenge, one has to participate in the auditions. At the end of the September workshop at UCU, students participated in interviews, from which 26 were selected to represent the institution at the inter-university challenge slated for November. Twelve universities are expected to participate in the challenge.
The best 25 students from the challenge will undergo an intense hands-on multimedia journalism skills training and mentorship for 25 days, over a period of six months.
Students showcase talents during auditions on September 24.
The UCU auditions were adjudicated by Kisembo and Simon Kakooza, from MCI, and John Semakula, the head of the Department of Undergraduate Studies at the School of Journalism, Media and Communication. The judges assessed the students on their degree of confidence, articulation of words, intonation, interaction with the cameras, and vocabulary in news reporting and anchoring. The students were asked to make their presentations either in the local language or English.
Semakula noted that by participating in the workshop, the students were equipped with extra skills, which they need to find a place in today’s job market.
The students who participated in the event said the auditions were a great opportunity to experience real life in the radio and television studios.
Kefa Senoga, a student and the President of the UCU Media Link Association, an umbrella body for students under the School of Journalism, Media and Communication, said by the end of the inter-university competitions, students will have learned a lot in recording videos and operating radio equipment.
Moses Muziriga, who represents journalism students in the Guild government, said the workshop helped students to interact with the equipment “since most of the classes are theoretical.”
“I could see the excitement among the students seeing themselves recording in the radio and television studios,” he said.
Denise Rebecca Nassunje, a third-year journalism student who participated in the audition, encouraged fellow students to put into practice whatever they had learned at the workshop.
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