“I learned an incredible amount about all aspects of theatre, television, movie, fashion, book, fine art and dance coverage. When picking my concentration, I felt slightly guilty over choosing ‘frivolous’ arts and culture over something more serious. I definitely do not feel that way any more.”
–Arts & Culture concentration graduate
& Culture Reporting Program
Cover the Arts, Define the Culture
At a time when digital technology is changing how art is made, distributed, and covered, journalists have never been more important in chronicling culture. And there’s no better place to study arts journalism than in New York City.
In the Arts and Culture Reporting Program, the five boroughs serve as our classroom. Students learn how cultural institutions work. They analyze the economics of the entertainment industry. They explore contemporary and historical issues such as copyright, censorship, and branding that provide context for reported stories. They write reviews and critical essays, study critics from Roland Barthes to Wesley Morris, and explore the aesthetic and ethical considerations that make for fair and informed critiques.
By choosing a beat within the concentration, Arts and Culture students deepen their knowledge of a specific discipline, whether food or fashion, theater or sports. In our subject courses – Cultural Issues, Arts Reporting, and Arts Criticism – students build on the reporting and interactive skills taught in the first semester, mastering a range of formats specific to culture, from the walkup to the roundup. Many of their stories run on our NYCity News Service; longer features appear in our online journal 219 Magazine; broadcast pieces find a home on our television news magazine 219 West; and audio shows are streamed live via Blog Talk Radio and archived on the Public Radio Exchange (PRX), where they can be picked up by local stations across the country.
Because our courses focus on both crafting and placing pieces, students leave the program with the professional reels or portfolios they need to get hired. Our graduates have found jobs as writers, editors, videographers, and producers internationally, at news organizations from The Wichita Eagle to The Wall Street Journal’s Hong Kong bureau. Student internships have led to jobs at Sports Illustrated, ABC News, The New York Times, and Marie Claire, among others.
“At the J-School, I learned not only to tell a great story, but to tell it on various platforms,” says 2009 Arts and Culture alumna Maya Pope-Chappell, an assistant web producer at The Wall Street Journal. “At work, we must be able to pitch stories that work in multiple ways. The J-School also helped me to make lasting and beneficial connections with other journalists.”