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Second Cronkite New Media Academy Open for Registration

August 23, 2009

The Cronkite New Media Academy is offering 10-day, five-day and one-day registrations for an innovative training program in digital media this fall.

The academy, operated by the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University, teaches participants how to develop a Web site from start to finish in 10 Saturday sessions beginning Sept. 12 and ending Nov. 14.

The training covers photos, graphics, video and sound on the Web as well as Web design and how to use social networking tools to engage with audiences. Individuals may register for all or a portion of the sessions.

The inaugural Cronkite New Media Academy was held this summer and was so successful that the school decided to hold it again, said Dean Christopher Callahan.

Participants ranged from graphic artists, bloggers and freelance writers to a newspaper editor and public relations professionals, all intent on learning new media skills.

A number of the participants said that when they came to the academy, they felt intimidated by new social media tools and software programs.

Terry Greene Sterling, a longtime Valley freelance journalist and author, said she managed to keep up with the technical advances in journalism until about 2006, at which point “I began to feel lost in my own profession.”

“Print journalism, which was almost completely online at that point, was utilizing new technologies that baffled me,” she said in an e-mail. “I was like a person who could not read, navigating through a universe of literates. I felt ignorant and helpless.”

While she doesn’t consider herself an expert, the Cronkite New Media Academy “unlocked and demystified” those baffling Web technologies, Greene Sterling said. “I now blog and have a Web site and a Twitter account. I understand how to edit and upload video and sound and how to work with digital photos. I am able now to converse with students about the best multimedia strategies to showcase their work, and I know how to add multimedia components to my own stories.”

Michael Schwartz, who blogs for ValleyoftheSuns.com, said the academy “represents my first step into the multimedia world, from which I can experiment and, hopefully, eventually become a capable multimedia journalist.”

Before the summer academy was over, participant Kendall Wright got a job as a reporter for a small newspaper in Patterson, Calif. “It was basically because of the New Media Academy (and the skills I learned there) that I got this job,” she said in an e-mail.

The academy is held at the school’s new state-of-the-art building in downtown Phoenix. All sessions are taught by Cronkite School faculty and staff in fully equipped digital media labs, with an emphasis on practical hands-on training.

For more information and to register, go to http://cronkite.asu.edu/newmedia.