Michelle Ferrier Receives $10,000 Grant
Michelle Ferrier, an associate professor in the School of Communications, was awarded a $10,000 grant from the McCormick Foundation New Media Women Entrepreneurs initiative for her proposal of a Women's Community News Franchise.
Her project will develop a complete infrastructure for other people who want to launch hyperlocal news sites. It will include services such as a Web platform, software development, market analysis, some content, and legal and marketing assistance. A demo site will be released in West Volusia County, Florida, later this year.
Of course, the creation and maintenance of hyperlocal sites is nothing new to Ferrier, who came to Elon from the Daytona Beach News-Journal, where she was the managing editor of online communities at MytopiaCafe.com. Before that, she worked at the Daytona newspaper as a columnist, copy editor and graphic designer. Ferrier will also begin teaching in the new Interactive Media master’s program in the fall.
Ferrier’s proposal was one of three selected from a pool of 435 in the second year of the McCormick Foundation’s program, which is administered by J-Lab: The Institute for Interactive Journalism, centered at American University in Washington, D.C. According to a release, winning proposals presented plans for creating larger projects and explained in detail how the money would be used.
The McCormick Foundation New Media Women Entrepreneurs addresses opportunity, innovation, recruitment and retention for women in journalism, according to the release.