Help an alum with her research

SJMC alum Lynne Robertson, JO’84, who owns the FAME agency, is doing research for a project and seeking some feedback from young people about their experiences with purchasing new phones and equipment. If you’d like to help out, please take the following short survey:

SJMC podcast talks politics

Strategic Political Communication majors Avery VanDenBerg and John Hirl joined the latest episode of the Drake SJMC Podcast to discuss what it is like to be a Drake student at the center of the American political universe during the Iowa Caucuses.

Register for May 2020 travel seminar by Dec. 8

Travel seminars for May 2020 require a minimum of 10 students registered by Sunday, Dec. 8 to be viable. The “Heritage and Holocaust” travel seminar to Germany and Poland, led by SJMC’s Dorothy Pisarski and Drake’s Director of Communications Jarad Bernstein, is cross-listed as JMC099 and INDT 099. It also has been approved for the Historical Foundations AOI.

Course information and registration are located here:

Make your holiday gifts at the Innovation Studio

The Innovation Studio in Mer. 124C, an interdisciplinary collaboration, will host a holiday gift-making event on Wednesday, Dec. 4, from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. If you want to carve a sign, sign up for a time slot and show up 30 minutes before your designated time to work on your design:

Check out new SJMC Stories and send us your own

As part of the SJMC’s centennial celebration, we are encouraging alums to share their “SJMC Stories.” See for our newest additions. If you would like to be involved with this project, email Better yet, just shoot a video telling us about your memories of the Drake SJMC and send that our way. We’ll also accept written memories to post.

Alums, save the date for our centennial celebration

The SJMC centennial celebration will culminate in an alumni reception during Drake Relays weekend 2020: Saturday, April 25, 5-8 p.m. in Meredith Hall. Get your “tribe” together and return to campus for a fun-filled evening. (Hint about our theme: “Meredith Hall Crawl”!)

In addition, we will be celebrating the “matriculation” of electronic media Professor Todd Evans after 36 years at Drake!

Stay tuned to the SJMC’s centennial website ( for updates. Learn about SJMC history and donate to the SJMC Centennial Fund ( to help support the next 100 years of excellence at Drake!

Midwest Emmys contest open for entries

The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (Emmy) Awards are open to high school and college media students in the Upper Midwest Region, including Iowa.

There are 20+ categories for  student-created videos, including newscasts, news stories, arts and entertainment, fiction (student-written productions), non-fiction (documentaries, real-life stories), music video, public affairs-community service (local issues), PSAs, commercials, sports and more! There are even craft categories for writers, photographers, editors, talent and graphics/animation/special effects.

Must read before submitting entries:

2020 College Student Awards Call for Entries Rules & Categories

Nominations will be announced on March 2, 2020, and the student production awards ceremony will be held on on Friday, April 3, 2020.

For more information contact or call 952-381-7

Orientation leaders needed for next year

Want to help welcome new students to Drake University? Want to get involved? Want an on-campus job this summer? Consider becoming an orientation leader.

Orientation leaders are dedicated to providing incoming students and their families with all of the information and resources necessary to ensure their transition to Drake is a smooth and enjoyable one.

Orientation leaders play a vital role in this process, working closely with new students and their families on a wide variety of topics including academics, student involvement, housing options and more.

There will be two information sessions about this position:

  • Friday, Dec. 6, 1 p.m., Olmsted TMR 132
  • Wednesday, Jan. 29, 6 p.m., Olmsted TMR 132

You will be compensated for your time and effort and gain valuable skills in this position.

Please visit to learn more about the position, but if you have any questions, feel free to contact Marina Verlengia at

Professor Snider hosts social media workshop

Associate Professor Chris Snider will host a Des Moines social media workshop on Dec. 17 at Drake University. The workshop is designed for people who run social media accounts for a company or organization and want to build a strategy to better succeed on social media in 2020. Get more details and sign up here.

Fulbright offers scholarship for study program in Berlin

Operated by the German-American Fulbright Commission, the Berlin Capital Program (May 23-30, 2020) invites young U.S. journalists and students of journalism to Germany. The weeklong seminar allows them to take a closer look at the German media landscape and gain a deeper awareness of the political, economic and cultural environment in Germany and Europe.  Its goals are to promote a better understanding of transatlantic issues, expand the journalists´ professional perspectives and networks, and help them better “translate” the news on this side of the Atlantic. The program is conducted in English and is fully funded through the Fulbright Commission.

The award benefits cover program costs, including round-trip transportation between the U.S. and Germany, hotel accommodation, some meals, local transportation and health insurance coverage during the seminar.

As 2020 marks the 30th anniversary of German reunification, this year’s Berlin Capital Program explores the role of the media in nurturing democracy.  The points for discussion with media professionals include:

  • How do the media impact political decision-making processes in Germany, and what role did they play in the reunification process in and after 1990?
  • What transformations has the German media landscape undergone in the last 30 years?
  • How do these transformations affect the role of journalists and public discourse?
  • What skills/competencies do citizens need today in dealing with media?

The program will explore the Germans´ state of mind 30 years after reunification and investigate the many ways in which the city of Berlin has changed in its role as Germany’s capital.

Participants will also learn about and discuss continuing changes within the European Union and their impact on Germany.

For the first time this year, the Berlin Capital Program will feature a three-workday (five overnights) extension (May 30-June 4, 2020) for a limited number of participants. It allows additional time to follow up on meetings from the program week, conduct independent research, and further take advantage of the Fulbright experience.

To be eligible for the program, an applicant must

  • be a U.S. young professional journalist, currently employed by U.S. media in the U.S., with fewer than 5 years of work experience in the field;
  • or a Master’s student in the field of journalism or communications at a U.S. university;
  • or a graduating senior in the field of journalism or communications at a U.S. university;
  • demonstrate relevant background and professional interests;
  • be U.S. citizens – dual citizenship holders with German citizenship are not eligible;
  • permanently reside in the U.S. and have a valid U.S. passport.

The full program description and application documents can be accessed at Fulbright website and shared from Facebook post.

Applications are welcome until Jan. 8, 2020.

Questions? Contact Jamie Moore, (

Broadcast scholarships available

The Radio Television Digital News Foundation’s aims to enable students to pursue their passion for the critical public service that is journalism. RTDNF also offers for recent graduates and new professional journalists with fewer than 10 years of experience.

for journalism students and for new professionals are available. Explore all of the RTDNF award opportunities . Applications will be accepted through Friday, Jan. 17.

Meredith Hall building hours

Meredith Hall is unlocked during the following hours when classes are in session:

Sunday-Sunday: 7:30 a.m.-9 p.m.
Monday-Friday: 7 a.m.-9:30 p.m.

Students with SJMC majors can swipe into the building with a Drake ID even when the building is locked from 7 a.m.-2 a.m., Sunday-Thursday. Students who are already in the building when it is automatically locked are allowed to stay in the building. Students who need 24/7 access to swipe into the building should talk to their faculty member or adviser about how to obtain all-hours access.

Have a news item for the Memo?

The SJMC Monday Memo is a weekly newsletter to keep members of the wider SJMC community updated on School news, achievements, events and opportunities. If you have an item for the Memo, please send it to Dean Kathleen Richardson ( or SJMC webmaster and multimedia professor Chris Snider ( SJMC alums and other professionals can also contact Chris to have the Memo delivered via weekly email.

The School of Journalism and Mass Communication strives to create a community of scholars that represents the complexity of the human experience in regards to race, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, economic status, political views, gender identification, religion, age and physical abilities. We are committed to creating a welcoming and supportive environment for all our faculty, staff, students and visitors, and celebrating our differences through the lens of the First Amendment value of freedom of expression.