Apr 20, 2010

Pulitzer Prize winner pushes profession

by Amanda Thomason

“Dirty old crooks” will always be part of the journalism world, but as reporters, the job is to find the truth and present it accurately. Inspiring young journalists to continue digging deep into their stories and gain more experience in convergence media, executive editor of El Nuevo Herald Manny Garcia led a journalism conference April 12 and 13 in DeMoss Hall.

“I wanted to quit my own job on the spot and go work for a paper somewhere,” Dean of Communications at Liberty William Gribbin said with a chuckle. “Garcia is the kind of guy that is so excited about journalism. He inspired me and I hope he inspired (the students) too.”

Garcia, an investigative journalist and board member of Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE), began the conference with a breaking news story of a high school shooting. Offering the students small bits of information at a time, Garcia urged the students to decipher through what information was accurate. Next they would produce a lead to post on their publication’s Web site.

After hearing from each student, discussion rose around the room about how to handle these situations and what a journalist should do when handling breaking news.

With years of valuable experience as a writer and an investigator, Garcia had much knowledge to offer students.
“Having an experienced journalist come to the school and provide insight into how the industry actually works is invaluable,” senior Mattison Brooks said. “It’s something students can learn a lot from because as much as we might gain from textbooks and studying, actually talking with someone who actively works in the business is a great learning experience.”

“He made the expectations of a journalist in emergency situations real” junior Sarah Johnson said. “He made it clear that the field of journalism is not going downhill, which was refreshing to hear, especially from someone who knows the business as well as he does.”

Working as an editor at a nationally recognized paper, Garcia presented a strong example to young journalists of someone that has worked his way up and proved himself to be a strong journalist.

For more information about Garcia or the Miami Herald, visit MiamiHerald.com.

Contact Amanda Thomason
at ahthomason@liberty.edu.

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