The Journalism program prepares students for today’s technology-centered news industry with strong foundational skills in writing, editing and reporting as well as training in design, social media and new multimedia techniques -- including video and audio news production and computer graphics.
Students in the College News Production class work as reporters, editors, photographers, videographers and designers of The Independent, the student-run print and online news publication which has garnered awards from the Washington Community College Journalism Association and the Associated Collegiate Press, the nation‘s largest college student media organization.
The Journalism program features faculty with professional media experience and provides real-world opportunities for students who report on campus events and issues of significance to the college community. The Journalism program also provides training and opportunities that can be useful in fields such as technical writing, law, politics, publishing, community and public relations, public information, advertising and other communication-based careers.
Journalism students can earn a regular AA degree with a certificate in News Media Studies which requires the completion of five core courses in writing and reporting, multimedia news production, mass media studies, college news staff and writing for the web and additional coursework in layout, video production, social media or photography. The certificate helps set a foundation for students looking to transfer to schools throughout Washington, including Washington State University, Western Washington University, Central Washington University and the University of Washington.
Students interested in pursuing a career in journalism should take Clark's basic sequence of news writing and editing courses and should work on the student newspaper, The Independent.
Several paid positions are available each year for student editors; expertise in computer graphics is desirable.
In addition to Clark's journalism courses, students should take a variety of courses that offer a broad general education and prepare them to transfer to a four-year school offering a degree in journalism or a related field. CMST& 102 offers a foundation for understanding how the media function in our society and is highly recommended. ENGL& 101, 102 and ENGL 103 will improve the ability to write clearly and do documented research accurately. Courses in the social sciences (particularly political science), history, literature, and science will provide a background for accurate reporting and the interpretation of data.
Students should make every effort to develop relevant computer skills while at the community college. These skills include word processing, electronic publishing, computer graphics, and the Internet.
Because course requirements vary at each institution, students interested in pursuing a four-year degree in Journalism should work with advisors at Clark and their transfer institution to develop a course of study.
Journalism courses typically transfer to four-year institutions. However, students should contact their transfer institution to clarify each course's transferability.