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Specializations

Cronkite students in the on-campus Master of Mass Communication program can specialize in two of the fastest-growing areas of journalism: business journalism and bilingual journalism.

Business Journalism Specialization

The Cronkite School has long been a leader in business journalism education, housing both the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism and the Society of American Business Editors and Writers.

Students in the business journalism specialization gain a thorough understanding of business and economic principles through practical journalism course work and professional internships at major news organizations that include Bloomberg News, Thomson Reuters, CNBC, MarketWatch, MSNBC.com and the business news departments of the Los Angeles Times, Houston Chronicle, Phoenix Business Journal and The Arizona Republic.

Entering graduate students take the courses MCO 550 Issues in Coverage of Business and the Economy and MCO 553 Reporting on Business and the Economy. The MCO 550 seminar introduces students to business and economic coverage, from balance sheets to regulation and coverage of business personalities. In MCO 553, they report and write stories about business and economic topics, often on deadline. Students learn how to present complex financial topics in clear and compelling ways, with the goal of publication.

Students in the specialization are encouraged to complete their required professional program on the business desk of Cronkite News, where they report on a wide range of stories that have money as an angle. Their stories are published on the Cronkite News website and are distributed to local, regional and national news outlets.

Students emerge with robust portfolios of published work and ready to enter the profession. Graduates work at major news outlets as well as business publications around the country.

Graduate assistantships are available to graduate students who have strong potential for business journalism careers. Those students are assigned to the Reynolds Center, where they get additional experience reporting, writing and producing content about the coverage of business.

Online students with an interest in business journalism can pursue the Master of Science in Business Journalism, which includes both Cronkite courses and courses from the W.P. Carey School of Business.

For more information on the MSBJ or the business journalism specialization, contact Cronkite Professor Andrew Leckey, a longtime business journalist and president of the Reynolds Center, at andrew.leckey@asu.edu.

Bilingual Specialization

The Bilingual Specialization at the Cronkite School is designed for students who want to build their cultural knowledge and tell the important stories of diverse communities throughout Arizona and the world.

Students report on people and places in Phoenix, along the U.S.-Mexico border, in Indian country and in other countries – from Peru and Puerto Rico to Hungary and Nicaragua. They learn from a team of experienced professionals that include Fernanda Santos, a Brazilian-American journalist, author and former Phoenix bureau chief for The New York Times; Rick Rodriguez, former executive editor of The Sacramento Bee and the first Latino president of the American Society of News Editors; Vanessa Ruiz, an Emmy Award-winning broadcast journalist and former evening news anchor for the NBC affiliate in Phoenix; and Valeria Fernandez, an award-winning narrative journalist and former correspondent for CNN Spanish.

Students may choose from courses such as Latino and Transnational Issues, a seminar that introduces students to cultural, economic and social issues in immigrant and border communities, and Depth Reporting, a course that takes student to another country over spring break to report on immigration and border issues. Student work in the Depth Reporting course has won major awards, including the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, Hearst Journalism awards and regional Emmys.

Previous class projects include:

Puerto Rico: Restless & Resilient |Queretaro: Promise of Prosperity for Mexico |
Hungary: Europe's Borderland | Nicaragua: Channeling the Future | Chiapas: State of Revolution | Two Borders|Puerto Rico: Unsettled Territory|Stateless in the Dominican Republic | South Africa Documentary | Borderlands Photo Essays | Divided Families | Divided Families Documentary | Children of the Borderlands

Students in the Bilingual Specialization complete their capstone professional program in either Cronkite News-Borderlands or the Spanish-language Cronkite Noticias program. In Cronkite News-Borderlands, students cover stories across the Southwest and along the U.S.-Mexico border, which are published in English on the Cronkite News website and distributed to regional media outlets. In Cronkite Noticias, students produce in-depth stories for the online platform, a weekly Facebook Live, and a newscast that airs on Univision Arizona. They also produce radio and short-form documentaries.