WSU welcomes Balkan student journalists for a program on the importance of a free press – WSU Insider

Washington State University is hosting a delegation of 14 student journalists from the Balkans. The three-week program began June 18.

The Study of the US Institute (SUSI) on Journalism and Media is part of a US Department of State program designed to help foster greater international understanding of free speech and a free press.

“WSU’s participation in the SUSI program provides foundational journalistic ethics and tradecraft for students from countries across Eastern Europe who are pursuing careers in media and journalism. They will build lasting relationships with each other, as well as students and journalists here in the US, helping build a global community of professionals dedicated to truth and reliability reporting, “said Paul Whitney, associate vice president for international programs.

SUSI Students at the Seattle times

Nevena Ivanovic, a journalism and media student from Krusevac, Serbia, said she hopes the program will help her expand her global mindset when it comes to reporting. She has a desire to learn new practices in digital communication that aligns well with the expertise of WSU faculty and staff.

That expertise was key to the university’s selection of a three-year, $ 210,000 per year federal grant, awarded in 2019. SUSI is funded by the Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and administered by FHI 360, a nonprofit organization. Offices in Washington, DC

A complete, six-week program was held in Pullman in 2019. Due to the persistent COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 program was canceled and the academic portion of the 2021 program was held online. Last summer, students engaged in a four-week virtual program that included leadership development, volunteer activities, cultural interactions, instruction, and active educational opportunities related to a range of subjects. Topics include: first amendment rights, technology’s impact on journalism, editorial independence, journalistic ethics, legal constraints, civic and investigative journalism, and digital and social media.

This summer, the 2021 program continues in-person. Student journalists will experience the Pacific Northwest through cultural and educational activities and community service. Activities include regional news outlets including the Seattle Times and Spokesman-Review, specializing in academic classes with faculty at the Murrow College of Communication at WSU, community service with local nonprofits, and cultural experiences, including attending a Seattle Mariners game. Nez Perce National Historical Park, and experiencing the Fourth of July with the Johnson parade and fireworks at Sunnyside Park in Pullman.

Egzon Musa places pin on a map

At the end of this program, student journalists will present a reporting project that shares their perspectives on the program.

“It is an honor to host these students on our campus. As a Pullman native, I take a lot of pride in making their stay at the Palouse unforgettable. Hopefully our students will leave here as Cougars for life and feeling richer for being a beautiful part of the world they may have never heard of. ” said Shane Johnson, SUSI WSU program manager.

The delegation’s visit to Cultural and Educational Arrangements is managed by the Office of International Programs as part of its on-going mission to highlight WSU expertise globally and bring visitors to WSU who can help our students and community experience other cultures and points of view.

To find out more about the program visit

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