From COVID-19 research and communication, to remote learning, to student coverage of forest fires and racial unrest, our experts, educators, and students worked together to find solutions to some of our world’s most pressing problems. We welcomed incoming first-year students, said goodbye to our graduating seniors, and gathered two new faculty members along the way.
We’re so proud to have all of you in our SOJC community. Go Ducks!
This summer our students bravely tackled the big stories—not by watching from the sidelines, but by joining the action. From the front lines of the fires in central and southern Oregon to the protests in Portland and Eugene, our faculty, alumni, and students worked as freelance journalists to document and share our state’s stories with the world.
When the pandemic hit, advertising students Nicole Krentz ’21 and Nicole Williams ’20 put their storytelling and design skills to use to help the community. Together, they volunteered over 50 hours a week to help build the brand, story, and website behind West Coast COVID-19 Help, a one-stop-shop COVID-19 resource bank for West Coast residents.
If you have read any research on coronavirus communication from the UO this year, you have likely learned from Ellen Peters, director of the SOJC’s Center for Science Communication Research (SCR). Peters worked with SCR faculty and student associates to investigate how people are thinking about the pandemic and the types of communication that resonate with them. She and other SOJC faculty also contributed to the UO's communication strategies for helping students stay safe and healthy.
Catalyst Journalism Project students Gina Scalpone ’20 and Zack Demars ’20 investigated the criminalization of unhoused people in Eugene and the effectiveness of community courts. Their solutions reporting reached across the nation when it was picked up by the Associated Press, New York Times, Washington Post, PBS, and many local news outlets. The Catalyst Journalism Project is an SOJC initiative that brings together investigative reporting and solutions journalism to spark action and response to Oregon’s most perplexing issues.
Thanks to Zoom fatigue and social isolation, the sudden transition to remote learning made college life extra-challenging for SOJC students. Our professors responded with flexible online courses that put students’ needs front and center throughout the pandemic. “We are all living and learning in the world of media, and they totally understand the things their students are going through,” said public relations major Carly Ebisuya ’21.