Michelle Ferrier receives journalism entrepreneurship fellowship

Associate Professor of Communications Michelle Ferrier was selected from an international pool of journalism educators to participate in the inaugural Scripps Howard Journalism Entrepreneurship Institute in January 2012 at Arizona State University.

Dr. Michelle Ferrier presents her media entrepreneurship project LocallyGrownNews.com at a women entrepreneurs summit in Washington, D.C. in 2010.

Ferrier is one of 12 educators taking part in the five-day institute, a partnership of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at ASU and the Scripps Howard Foundation. The foundation is the philanthropic arm of The E.W. Scripps Company, which owns television stations in nine markets as well as 13 newspapers, a Washington, D.C.-based news service and a worldwide syndication company.

According to the program website, Scripps Howard Foundation President and CEO Mike Phillipps said the institute will play an important role in enabling journalism professors to equip their students with the entrepreneurial skills they need in today’s new media landscape.

“We need faculty who can teach young people the skills they will need to reinvent our business,” Phillipps said. “Their programs must turn out graduates with the core values of journalism – fairness, accuracy, storytelling, a deep respect for the First Amendment – who also can recognize and exploit a business opportunity and who are entrepreneurial and nimble enough to adjust to wild changes in the media landscape. We hope this program will be a giant step in that direction.”

Ferrier, who created the Journalism That Matters Create or Die series of conferences on media entrepreneurship for people of color, wants to develop a course and a curriculum that can serve to advance innovations in journalism.

“The fellowship will allow me to connect with educators pursuing curriculum development and to figure out how best to serve our students and adult learners who are entering this dynamic media landscape,” Ferrier said. “Right now, we need sustainable models for journalism and technology development that serves all communities and therefore we need people of all kinds of backgrounds and skill sets to create,” she said.

The Scripps Howard Journalism Entrepreneurship Institute will be held Jan. 4-8, 2012. Training, transportation, lodging, materials and meals will be provided through the fellowship.