Each year, advertising and public relations students look forward to annual trips to places like New York City and Chicago with their favorite professors. They take tours, hold informational interviews, build their networks and gain knowledge in their field.

Journalism students, however, have not had the option to take trips like these  — until this year! The inaugural Super-J trip will take students to New York City this spring, May 8-14.

The idea of a Super-J trip was first brought forward by SOJC Instructor Lisa Heyamoto, who has been wanting to do a trip with journalism students for years. This year it’s finally becoming reality, thanks to a generous donation that Heyamoto and Carolyn S. Chambers Professor in Journalism Damian Radcliffe received from an alumnus. The donation will subsidize part of the cost for students.

“It’s really critical that our students get connected to top publications and media organizations,” Heyamoto said. “That’s what this trip is all about.”

After reviewing numerous applications, Heyamoto and Radcliffe held interviews and reviewed portfolios to get a 360-degree view of the students who were interested in the trip. In the end, they selected 14 students to go on the May trip: Jonathan Bach, Abby Johnson, Michaela Giunchigliani, Hannah Steinkopf-Frank, Polly Irungu, Judy Holtz, Shirley Chan, Caitlyn May, Sutton Raphael, Kira Hoffelmeyer, Samantha Edge, Samantha Matsumoto, Claire Aguilar-Larson and Spencer Hurbis.

“My interest in the New York trip began when I heard how beneficial the trip was last year to the advertising students,” Holtz said. “I wanted to connect with alumni nationwide and understand what I could do to learn from them and their experiences during their job search.”

New York City is a place immersed in journalism, and SOJC students will be embracing every aspect of it. The itinerary is full of visits to top legacy digital publications, academic institutions and nonprofits, and students will have the opportunity to network with some of the best journalism news outlets in the nation.

“The breadth of what we are showing them will give them a better idea of where they want to aim themselves, toward both particular outlets and areas they hadn’t thought about before,” Heyamoto said.

Some stops students will make include the offices of The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Blue Chalk, ProPublica, Marshall Project and Columbia University. The hope is that these sorts of visits will help open students’ eyes to the kind of jobs out there and empower them to break away from the typical.

“It’s no secret that rubbing shoulders with industry elites puts journalism students in potentially career-changing positions,” said Bach. “Lisa Heyamoto and Damian Radcliffe have worked hard to give us this shot. So I’m looking forward to being an ambassador for the University of Oregon’s journalism school during the New York trip. I’m ready to show these organizations that Oregonian journalists are, as we say in Allen Hall, ethics-, innovation- and action-oriented.”

Story by Nikki Kesaris ‘18