Scripps Howard Foundation grants $4 million for Journalism Center at Hampton University

Thu, August 17, 2000 by Mark Kroeger

PHOENIX – Scripps Howard Foundation, in partnership with Hampton University to increase diversity in America’s newsrooms, has committed $4 million for the construction of a new journalism and communications center on the university’s Virginia campus.Including the grant announced today, Scripps Howard Foundation has committed nearly $7 million toward the development of a journalism and communications program at Hampton. In March, the foundation, the philanthropic arm of The E.W. Scripps Company, committed $2.3 million for the development of Hampton’s Scripps Howard Program in Journalism. The foundation and the university unveiled plans for the new Scripps Howard Center during the annual convention of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ), which is being held this week in Phoenix. The foundation also announced a five-year, $300,000 grant to NABJ, which the organization will use to develop undergraduate and continuing education journalism programs at Hampton.Ground breaking for the 25,000-square-foot Scripps Howard Center will be in October. The university plans to hold its first classes in the new academic building in the fall of 2001. “Scripps Howard Foundation has been determined to find a new and effective approach to improving workplace diversity in our industry,” said Judith G. Clabes, president and CEO of the foundation. “We set out to find a partner among the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities because of the important role they play in educating more than a third of this nation’s African-American college graduates. Our search led us to Hampton. Funding for this new building is the next big step in this unique partnership.” Hampton President Dr. William Harvey said, “It’s exciting to be a part of the Hampton University-Scripps Howard partnership. The goal is to make Hampton University’s journalism program one of the top 10 programs in the country and to create at Hampton University a role model for other historically black institutions and potential media partners. Such partnerships will move more talented, highly qualified people of color into the newsrooms, executive suites, board rooms and into ownership. I truly believe that this is a great day for the profession of journalism and journalism education.”William R. Burleigh, chairman and CEO of The E. W. Scripps Company, said, “We have a wonderful and unique partnership with Hampton. Hampton and Scripps share deep and rich traditions, Scripps as the nation’s oldest media company, and Hampton as one of the country’s oldest and most respected of the Historically Black Colleges and Universities. I can think of no better alliance to tackle a problem that long has defied a solution.”Kenneth W. Lowe, president and chief operating officer for The E. W. Scripps Company, said, “We view our partnership with Hampton University as an important step forward, not just for our company, but for our entire industry, to address a problem that we all agree needs critical attention. We hope others in our industry will follow our lead by partnering with other Historically Black Colleges and Universities to expand the pool of talented college graduates interested in pursuing a career in the media.”The foundation’s five-year commitment to Hampton that was announced in March is being used by the university to establish an endowed chair (the Scripps Howard Professorship of Journalism), student scholarships, internships and the Scripps Howard Visiting Professional program. The endowment also will include the purchase of equipment and funds for general program support, including faculty workshops and seminars.The new Scripps Howard Center will have six classrooms; broadcast journalism facilities, including a television studio with state-of-the-art digital editing equipment; a multi-media lecture hall/auditorium; and four computer labs for reporting, writing and editing for print, broadcast and online journalism and communications.The $300,000 grant to NABJ will be used to establish a training program for minority college journalism students preparing for professional internships, a series of short courses for student journalists and a media management training program for working minority journalists.“NABJ, through the years, has worked with Historically Black Colleges and Universities, including Hampton,” said William W. Sutton Jr., NABJ president and deputy managing editor of The (Raleigh, N.C.) News & Observer. “We are excited about this partnership with the Scripps Howard Foundation through which NABJ will be able to provide programming focused primarily on student development, but also including some professional development. Programs will focus on key areas of need in the industry, including copy editing, broadcast writing, producing and media management.”Hampton University, located on a 204-acre waterfront campus in southeastern Virginia, on the mid-Atlantic coast, offers a quality academic program to all students. The university was the first among Historically Black Colleges and Universities to offer journalism-related curriculum when it established its Department of Mass Media Arts in 1967. The department prepares students for careers in five fields: print and broadcast journalism, public relations, advertising and – in a new sequence to be launched this fall – media management. The new media management sequence is a collaboration between the journalism-communications program and Hampton’s School of Business.Hampton provides a liberal arts foundation for its professional and scientific disciplines. Some of the major areas of study are: aviation science, architecture, entrepreneurship, environmental and marine science, chemistry, electrical and chemical engineering, music engineering technology, education, English, business, computer sciences, mass media, nursing, communicative sciences and disorders, physical therapy, physics, paralegal studies, fire administration, emergency medical systems management, and systems management.Students may earn the bachelor's and/or master's degree in many areas. The Ph.D. is awarded in physics, physical therapy and nursing; and the Pharm.D. is awarded in pharmacy. The National Association of Black Journalists, 2,500 members strong with 74 affiliate professional chapters and 51 student chapters, is the largest media organization for people of color in the world. Founded in 1975, NABJ’s mission is to strengthen ties among African-American journalists; promote diversity in newsrooms; honor excellence and outstanding achievement in the media industry; expand job opportunities and recruiting activities for established African-American journalists and students interested in the journalism field; and expand and balance the media’s coverage of the African-American community and experience.The E. W. Scripps Company, headquartered in Cincinnati, is a diverse media concern with interests in newspaper publishing, broadcast television, cable television programming and interactive media. Scripps operates 20 daily newspapers, 10 broadcast TV stations and three cable television networks, with plans to launch a fourth.Scripps cable television network brands include Home & Garden Television, Food Network, Do it Yourself, and Fine Living, due to launch in the second half of 2001.The company also operates Scripps Howard News Service, United Media, the worldwide licensing and syndication home of PEANUTS and DILBERT, and 31 Web sites, including hgtv.com, foodtv.com, diynet.com and comics.com.Dedicated to excellence in journalism, the Scripps Howard Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the E.W. Scripps Company, is a leader in industry efforts in journalism education, scholarships, internships, literacy, minority recruitment/development and First Amendment causes. ###Contacts:Mark W. KroegerScripps Howard Foundation513-977-3827Email: mwkroeger@scripps.comYuri RodgersHampton University757-727-5754Email: yuri.rodgers@hamptonu.eduKatrina Norfleet BrownNational Association of Black Journalists602-514-7883Email: katrina@nabj.org