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Howard University Media Town Hall: ‘Reporting While Black: Confronting Systemic Racism’

reporting while black panel participants

WASHINGTON - Key journalism, education and diversity experts will join Howard University students in a town hall discussion of “Reporting While Black: Confronting Systemic Racism" at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, April 26.

The town hall will be held in the Met Auditorium, Room 100, within the Cathy Hughes School of Communications, 300 Bryant St. NW, Washington DC 20001. The event is open to the Howard campus as well as the public. Students from other cities can participate via live stream here.

This event is co-hosted by The Black Executive & Student Training Program, known as The BEST Program, and the Howard University Department of Media, Journalism and Film.

“This town hall is an invaluable opportunity to discuss systemic racism, which should have been dead, gone, and buried long ago,” said Ingrid Sturgis, associate professor and chair of the Department of Media, Journalism and Film. “It’s something that we have to confront again as a people – especially for younger generations who haven’t had to live through the worst of it.”

The Howard University town hall will be led by:

Keith Alexander, a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter at the Washington Post, who covers crime and courts and serves as editorial adviser of The Hilltop campus newspaper at Howard University;

Panama Jackson, columnist and podcaster at TheGrio.com, who was co-founder and senior editor of VerySmartBrothas.com;

Jennifer Thomas, associate professor, journalism sequence coordinator and a former executive producer at CNN; and

Yanick Rice Lamb, professor of journalism, medical sociologist, co-founder of FierceforBlackWomen.com and moderator of the “Reporting While Black” discussion.

The Black Executive & Student Training Program and the Department of Media, Journalism and Film previously partnered on a town hall that served as a precursor to the 2022 midterm U.S. election cycle. It was followed by student news coverage of stories, people, and issues impacting voting rights and democracy titled “Your World, Your Way, Your Ballot.”

The discussion is also an outgrowth of a Third Reconstruction project in conjunction with the Solutions Journalism Student Media Challenge. Howard University is one of eight schools in the inaugural Solutions Journalism cohort. Student coverage on racial inequality will be featured on HUNewsService.com.

"At The BEST Program, we believe that education and dialogue are essential to creating a more equitable and just society,” said Carolyn Ellison, co-founder and board member of The Black Executive & Student Training Program.  “By co-hosting the 'Reporting While Black: Confronting Systemic Racism’ town hall with Howard University and the Department of Media, Journalism and Film, we hope to amplify the voices of Black journalists and facilitate a meaningful conversation about the impact of systemic racism on their work."

About Howard University  

Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private, research university that is comprised of 14 schools and colleges. Students pursue more than 140 programs of study leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University operates with a commitment to Excellence in Truth and Service and has produced two Schwarzman Scholars, four Marshall Scholars, four Rhodes Scholars, 12 Truman Scholars, 25 Pickering Fellows and more than 165 Fulbright recipients. Howard also produces more on-campus African American PhD. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University, visit www.howard.edu. 

Media contact: Sholnn Freeman; sholnn.freeman@howard.edu