Students with the 7Deep Empowerment and Enrichment Program not only learned about the importance of media during visits to the Jackson State University’s Department of Journalism and Media Studies (DJMS) they became media practitioners for a day.
The group of more than 20 middle and high school students from 7Deep visited various units within DJMS for three days, including visits to JSUTV, the university’s commercial station;WJSU, the university’s public radio station;The Blue & White Flash, the university’s award-winning student newspaper and the eXperience Magazine, the university’s semi-annual feature magazine.
Students visited the Mississippi eCenter@JSU on June 12 and Student Publications on the main campus on June 19 and June 21.
According to Janelle Griffin, 7Deep Director, the goal of the program is to expose students to the “Seven Spheres of Influence that include religion, arts, business, education, family, government and media.”
The Department of Journalism and Media Studies in the College of Liberal Arts was the right place for exposure to media as radio, television and newspaper managers provided the students with hands-on activities at all of their media outlets at the Mississippi eCenter@JSU and on JSU’s main campus.
DJMS department chair Elayne H. Anthony was excited about the opportunity to expose future college students to what DJMS has to offer should they decide to attend Jackson State.
“I really enjoyed the students from 7Deep. They were very excited about the field of media and actually cut commercials for radio and television and wrote articles at The Flash. Their energy was contagious. I spoke to many of the students, and they collectively shared what they would like to do in this field,” Anthony said.
Kerriana Moore, who will be a ninth-grader at Murrah High School this fall, said she learned that those who work with media have a difficult job.
“It was challenging. The things we did I had never done before. Learning to work television cameras, talking on the radio and conducting interviews and writing stories were hard, but I really enjoyed it,” Moore said.
Neal Jones, an eighth-grader at Reimagine Prep, said he learned a lot about media and its importance.
“Learning how to gather information and write at The Blue & White Flash will prepare me for what I want to do in college. This whole experience with the journalism department was very educational and everybody we met was nice and friendly,” Jones said.
The 7Deep students visited WJSU on June 12 and created radio spots that will be aired in the near future.
“It was really great working with the young people from 7Deep. We came up with a project for them to work on that would give them a feel for what it was like to work in radio. They knocked it out of the park. The two radio spots they created were fantastic. What a talented, smart group of kids,” said Dwain Doty, WJSU news director.
During the visit to Student Publications on June 19 and June 21, students produced a newsletter about their summer experiences.
They held a mock staff meeting and came up with story ideas related to the different visits they have participated in since the summer program began. They were then given a story assignment that included information-gathering and interviewing. They then wrote stories and submitted photos for publishing a newsletter.
“I am definitely considering pursuing a career in media,” said Andre’ Carr, who will be a ninth-grader this fall at Murrah High School. “Media seem to be very impactful in this day and age and I would like to be able to help by giving people the important information they need.”
Meanwhile, Anthony said she hopes the experiences the students had in DJMS lead them to the campus of Jackson State as students in the future.
“I hope to continue our association with 7Deep throughout the school year. This project was good for the children and for the staff of Journalism and Media Studies,” Anthony said.
For more information on the 7Deep Empowerment and Enrichment Program, contact Jannelle Griffin via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.