The Stardust Foundation is awarding a $510,000 grant to the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University to fund high school journalism programs.
The grant is intended to fund the creation of journalism programs in high schools in Arizona.
Ten high schools will be selected to participate in the Stardust High School Journalism Program, which aims to create multimedia newsrooms in each school and teach faculty and students about the skills and ethics of professional journalism.
“The communication skills the students will learn in this program will be useful to them, regardless of their chosen profession,” said Stardust founder Jerry Bisgrove.
The Cronkite School hired Anita Luera as the new director for programs that reach out to high schools. As the director, Luera will help identify many of the schools that will be considered for assistance by the Stardust Program.
The Stardust High School Journalism Program is considered the first university-based initiative in the nation to create multimedia newsrooms in high schools, according to Cronkite school dean, Christopher Callahan.
“High school journalism programs provide students with opportunities to improve their writing and interpersonal skills and give school communities a forum for news and exchange of ideas,” Callahan said.
Callahan said a majority of journalists developed their interest in the profession by exposure to high school newspapers. He believes that reaching high schools without multimedia programs will create more aspiring journalists.
“ASU is committed to making a difference in the lives of our community members and the Stardust High School Journalism Program is certain to make a lasting impact on the lives of the participating students,” said ASU President Michael Crow.
Bisgrove added, “In today’s fast-paced, information-driven world, effective communication is vital to achieving success in all facets of one’s life.”
The Stardust Foundation is a non-profit corporation located in Scottsdale that was founded in 1993.