Riding on Your Shoulders
I’ve been walking around the past two weeks with my right
shoulder in a sling and feeling terribly mortal. Frayed parts and
built up arthritic deposits had exhausted my capacity to “live
with it.” So I had the shoulder scoped. Now the right shoulder
has three small scars and matches the left. TMI? Sorry.
For this issue of eNews, I’d thought I’d write about
Homecoming events that are coming up November 10-12. Those culminate
with the USC-Florida football game and, if we’ve had three
good weeks, back-to-back SEC East titles. But I’d written
about Homecoming in last year’s November eNews and have an
unwritten two-year statute of forbearance on recycling themes.
I’d like to retain at least the illusion of an occasionally
Homecoming is a combination of remembrance, revival and renewal.
We remember the good times of our college experiences, renew our
ties to classmates and professors and revive our enthusiasm for
the university’s future. Sort of like renewing a shoulder’s
muscle memory, flexibility and strength.
We hope you will join us at our annual Gibbes Green gathering
of alumni, students, faculty and friends from 4-6 pm on Friday,
November 11. This is the college’s primary Homecoming event,
bridging generations and schools. All are welcome. We do like to
know if you’re planning to come so we can carry on our tradition
of hospitality. RSVP to Elaine Taylor - firstname.lastname@example.org -
by Nov. 4.
Homecoming is also another opportunity to share with you our successes
and progress. As promised in this monthly column, I want to
keep you up to date on the steps toward the construction phase
for the journalism school’s building. We now have approval
from the university’s Board of Trustees and staff approval
from the state Commission on Higher Education. Still to come: the
Joint Bond Review Committee and the Budget and Control Board.
Meanwhile, we’ll all be holding our renewed shoulders to
the wheel. It’s less painful than keeping our noses to the
Waggoner Earns Honor from West Virginia Library Commission
J.D. Waggoner, ’94 MLIS, was awarded the West Virginia Library
Commission’s Dora Ruth Parks Award in recognition of a long
and outstanding career of service to West Virginia libraries. Waggoner
worked more than 40 years for the commission, serving many roles
within the organization before retiring earlier this year. Waggoner
was the Secretary of the West Virginia Library Commission for the
final eight years of his career.
Among previous awards and recognitions, Waggoner was the recipient
of the School of Library and Information Science’s Wayne
S. Yenawine Outstanding Student Award in 1994 and earned the school’s
Outstanding Alumni Award in 2005.
Spires joins Columbia’s City Center Partnership
Public relations alumna Heather Spires, ’98, has been hired
by the City Center Partnership as the director of retail recruitment
for downtown Columbia.
Prior to joining the partnership, Spires
served as the development director at Columbia’s Nickelodeon
Theatre, overseeing a $4 million capital campaign. She has also
worked with a variety of advocacy and nonprofit organizations.
The Center City Partnership works to improve and attract businesses
to a 36-block area surrounding Main Street in Columbia. Matt Kennell,
president and CEO of the partnership, said Spires was chosen because
of her sales experience, personality and relationships in Columbia.
Recent MLIS Grad Combines Interests at San Francisco Conservatory
Rodney Linebarger, ’11 MLIS, has accepted an assistant librarian
position at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Linebarger
moves into the full-time position after previously working as a
part-time weekend and evening supervisor at the Conservatory while
also completing an internship with the University of California
San Francisco. Linebarger’s work at the Conservatory goes
hand-in-hand with his love for music. A skilled French horn player,
Linebarger also holds a bachelor’s degree in music education
and a Master of Music in Conducting.
J-school Alumni Connect at PRSA Conference
Three alumni of the School of Journalism and Mass Communications
connected at the recent Public Relations Society of America
International Conference in Orlando. Rachel Beanland ’03
public relations, Jeff Wilson ’92
journalism, both members of PRSA’s Richmond chapter spent
time reminiscing about their years at the J-school with Stephen
Brown, ‘95 public relations, who was at the conference representing
PRSA’s Atlanta chapter.
Scholarship Donors and Recipients Honored at Annual Scholarship
The College of Mass Communications and Information Studies honored
its scholarship donors and recipients at its annual Scholarship
Luncheon on Oct. 13. The event was held in the Russell House Ballroom
with more than 80 attendees. Two scholarship recipients,
Courtney Gibson (SJMC) and Antonio Peterson (SLIS), shared with
the audience what receiving their scholarships has meant to them
Gibson, who will finish the Master of Mass Communication program
in December, said that the Page Morris Fellowship for Journalism
Education in Business has “reduced the financial burden of
graduate school on my parents and myself, allowing me to fully
focus on my studies while pursing my degree.”
Peterson, a SLIS graduate student and USC employee who is a father
of three, said that the SCLA Scholarship for Diversity in Librarianship
helps him to “show my kids that with hard work and your faith
all things are possible, and I have an opportunity for a better
View photo gallery
MSNBC Anchor Craig Melvin Returns Home to Deliver Buchheit Lecture
By Josh Dawsey, Editor-in-Chief, The Daily Gamecock
Reprinted from The Daily Gamecock
The Burger Kings were closing all around Columbia, and Craig Melvin
was on the story.
Melvin — then a freshly graduated associate producer at
WIS-TV in 2001 — had little experience, but it was a seemingly
simple story. The Whoppers were gone. Why? So to the field Melvin
went “panning, tilting, zooming and bringing these Burger
Kings to life.” One problem: he’d forgotten to turn
on the camera.
“Even when I lacked talent and skill, I never lacked confidence,” Melvin
said, drawing a collective chorus of laughs from a crowd of about
150 inside Gambrell Hall’s Auditorium.
Melvin, now an MSNBC anchor and correspondent for NBC News in
New York City, returned to Columbia Wednesday night, Oct. 5 and
delivered the Buchheit Family Lecture, the headlining speech of
the College of Mass Communications and Information Studies’ I-Comm
Week. His speech was a potent mix of self-deprecating humor, powerful
inspiration and intriguing analyses of the current media environment.
more and view video of Craig Melvin’s speech
SLIS Instructor Receives Service Award for Work with North Carolina
Gerry Solomon, a second-year instructor in the School of Library
and Information Science, was awarded the North Carolina School
Library Media Association’s Francis Bryant Bradburn Distinguished
Service Award at the organization’s annual conference in
Winston Salem, N.C., on Oct. 7. The prestigious award is presented
to individuals who have made noteworthy contributions to NCSLMA
and school library media programs throughout the state of North
Prior to joining the USC Library School in 2010, Solomon spent
many years working with North Carolina libraries. Among other positions,
Solomon was a school library media consultant with the North Carolina
Department of Public Instruction's Instructional Technology Division,
where she supported more than 2,000 media professionals throughout
North Carolina. Solomon also taught as an adjunct instructor at
the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill School of Information
and Library Science.
SLIS Student Receives RCPL’s Minority Scholarship
Gabrielle Marshaé Dudley, a graduate student in the School
of Library and Information Science, was recently honored as the
recipient of the second annual Ethel Bolden Minority Scholarship
from the Richland County Public Library Foundation. A reception
honoring Dudley was held at the Richland County’s Main Library
in October with a special presentation by Ethel Bolden’s
son, NASA administrator Charles F. Bolden Jr.
The $2,500 scholarship, which honors Ethel Bolden’s many
years of service to the Richland County community and its libraries,
was awarded to Dudley to provide financial support and encourage
completion of her joint Master of Library and Information Science
and Master of Public History degrees.
During her first academic year at USC, Dudley worked as a graduate
assistant in the South Carolina Political Collections Library.
She has also served as a graduate research assistant for the university’s
African American Documentary History Initiative.
Broadcast Students go Behind the Scenes with ESPNU's Campus Connection
A group of broadcast students got a taste of what it’s like
to work on the production crew of a live sports production during
ESPNU’s broadcast of the USC volleyball team’s match
against Florida on Oct. 19. As senior Lauren Hinnant learned, the
job is more than just fun and games.
The production crew “had to live and breathe all sports
and know them in and out,” said Hinnant, who shadowed the
broadcast’s producer as part of the ESPNU Campus Connection
program. “For me, it's a hobby I love and will always love,
but the ESPNU crew took their love to a whole new level.”
Hinnant spent most of the day in the crew’s mobile control
room, where she got an up-close look what goes into a sports broadcast. “Shadowing
the ESPNU crew was an amazing experience and really opened my eyes
to the world of sports broadcasting,” Hinnant said.
Before participating in the program, Hinnant, who plans to pursue
a career in news television after graduating in December, said
she never saw herself going into sports broadcasting, but working
with the ESPNU crew may have swayed her opinion slightly. “After
working with ESPNU, I found the job was a totally different experience
than the notion I had regarding sports on TV,” she said.
more about Hinnant’s participation in ESPNU’s
Alumni Awards Dinner
Nov. 10, 7:00 p.m.
Capital City Club
1201 Main St., Columbia, SC
The School of Journalism and Mass Communications will honor the
following alumni Thursday, Nov. 10 at the annual Alumni Awards
Distinguished Alumni Award recipients:
• Johnny Boggs, ‘84, western author
• George Johnson, ‘96, former VP for BlueCross BlueShield of South
Carolina, adjunct instructor
• Clayton Owen, ‘82, senior director of media relations for AT&T,
Outstanding Young Alumni Award recipients:
• John Baker, ‘01, senior art director, TBWA/CHIAT/DAY
• Kenneth Moton, ‘04, reporter, WPVI, Philadelphia, ABA affiliate
Excellence in Service Award recipient:
• Ken Baldwin, ’49, retired newspaper executive and loyal donor
to the SJMC
The Alumni Society will host a reception at 6:30 with dinner to
follow at 7. Alumni, faculty and friends are welcome. Cost is $35
per person. RSVP by Nov. 3 to Elaine Taylor – email@example.com.
Gamecocks on the Green
Nov. 11, 4:00 p.m.
We hope you’re making plans to join former classmates, faculty
and friends for Gamecocks on the Green, our college's Homecoming
celebration and our tradition since 2005!
We'll gather on Gibbes Green near Davis College on Friday, Nov.
11, from 4:00 - 6 p.m. Rain location: Campus Room in Capstone House,
900 Barnwell Street. RSVP to Elaine Taylor - firstname.lastname@example.org -
by Nov. 4. Bring the kids.
Dr. Wei Portrays American Culture Through Columns for Chinese
By Alyssa Lepow, SJMC graduate student
Chinese citizens often have a distorted view of Americans and
the American way of life. However, Dr. Ran Wei, a China-born professor
in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications, has set out
to change these inaccurate perceptions.
Dr. Wei currently writes columns for two major, influential Chinese
newspapers, Sangin Metro Daily and China Daily, and will add a
third column appearing in Beijing Daily. Because he usually writes
for academic journals, Dr. Wei has had to adapt to a journalistic
style and approach to write the columns. He depicts American lifestyles
from his point of view, with an overall goal of informing Chinese
people of American practices.
Because Chinese citizens receive limited information about American
people, their view of Americans is predominately one-sided. The
Chinese media most often portray Americans negatively, and Dr.
Wei feels he can provide readers an authentic look at American
life. He wants to educate Chinese people about common events in
the United States, as well as provide relatable interpretations
of American customs. His columns address a range of topics, from
the traditional high school prom to terrorism.
“Chinese media have a practice of inviting contributors
to the op-ed section, in a way to boost their authoritativeness,” Dr.
Wei says, in describing why Chinese people are open to reading
his columns, despite their negative views of Americans. “Most
invited contributors or columnists are scholars, or someone with
an expertise in an area.”
“There is a lack of balanced coverage of the U.S. in China’s
media,” Dr. Wei says. “Most of the news stories focus
on hard news, not relating to the average Chinese reader. So, my
columns seek to tell stories about all aspects of living and working
Earlier this fall, he tried to help Chinese readers understand
Americans’ feelings about Sept. 11. “As the 10th anniversary
of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on America approaches, 9/11 has a
significant bearing on the worldview of Americans,” Dr. Wei
wrote in China Daily. “The world’s sole superpower
fell victim to deadly attacks by terrorists from a land far away — something
Americans have never experienced in its 235-year history.”
Dr. Wei also often writes about events in American culture with
which Chinese people are not familiar. In another recent column,
Dr. Wei wrote about the traditional high school prom; he described
it and defined why it is a significant event in American life.
The columns’ influence and reach are growing, and Chinese
readers are taking an increasing interest in his stories. They
are archived on his blog http://blog.sina.com.cn/u/2195186310.
Dr. Wei is the Gonzales Brothers Professor of Journalism. He earned
his Bachelor of Arts at Shanghai International Studies University,
his Master of Arts at the University of Wales and his Ph.D. at
Indiana University – Bloomington. Dr. Wei joined SJMC in
2001 after teaching at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.