Friday, September 26, 2008

DC Area Journalism Enrollment Steady


Teaching journalism can feel like selling tickets to the Titanic.
I go from my bureau, where reporters are trying on life jackets, to the George Washington U class I teach as an adjunct, where the students are smart, engaged and interested. Almost as if, you know, there's a real future out there.
Not only that, but the journalism classes in D.C.-area universities are filling up. Check it out: GW's School of Media and Public Affairs reports this week that there are 306 undergraduate students enrolled, of whom 167 are journalism majors and 139 are political communications majors. The entry level classes, Introduction to News Writing and Reporting, are all fully subscribed, and then some. Journalism seems more popular than ever.
The University of Maryland's Philip Merrill College of Journalism reports having489 undergraduates enrolled. The journalism school's director of public affairs, Matthew Sheehan, advises me that "enrollment is down slightly this year; however, it is on part with the decline in enrollment in the university as a whole."
American University journalism numbers tk.
I take heart in these enrollment numbers. I think the students are seeing through the current industry turmoil. Reporting endures, though the forms will change. These students will be landing, albeit on a different shore than the one we know.

1 comment:

lisa f. said...

I agree, Mike. What's happening to newspapers breaks my heart, but I'm not pessimistic about journalism. The hunger for information is still out there -- as is the desire of people to find things out, knock heads, tell good stories and shine a light on corruption and hypocrisy. Journalism will survive. Today's J-students will have to be the ones to figure out what this new shore we're going to land on looks like -- but, call me optimistic -- I think at the end of the day journalism will be just fine.