Thursday, June 6, 2019

Science Journalism Interns take to the Airwaves and Newsrooms Across Wyoming

Warm temperatures and long days are a welcome sign of summer in Wyoming. Classrooms and textbooks give way to open ranges, Carhartts, and field notes. Starting this summer, students from the Communication and Journalism department at the University of Wyoming are scattering to newsrooms across the state as part of an internship program in science journalism through Wyoming EPScoR’s Track 1 Micro project. Interns will develop hands-on experience, receive mentoring by seasoned reporters, and build a body of work in science journalism. Mining and tourism buoy Wyoming’s economy. We are a state blessed by a wealth of natural resources, large swaths of federal land, and the nation’s first national park. Wyoming is perfectly positioned to lead science communication initiatives. Associate Professor Kristen Landreville directs the summer science journalism internship program. Below are brief descriptions of the 2019 interns and their associated newsrooms.

  • Nolan Behnke works in the Wyoming Tribune Eagle newsroom. Nolan wants to learn more about the different facets of Wyoming journalism and how to produce a strong story. He was an intern with Wyoming Public Radio in spring 2019 and wants to diversify his media background. His goal is to learn how science is researched and reported in the state. 
  • Kiley Carrol is interning at her hometown paper, the Sheridan Press. Kiley grew up on a ranch and is keen on expanding the Sheridan Press’s coverage of agriculture and science issues.
  • Ivy Engel interns with Wyoming Public Media. She is studying biology with minors in chemistry, journalism, and business. Hoping to go into science communication upon graduation, she is excited to get a taste of the world of broadcast journalism and to share her love of science.
  • Tristan Kutzer is working in the Casper Star-Tribune newsroom. During the school year, he writes for the University of Wyoming student newspaper, the Branding Iron. He is excited about the strong mentorship experience that the Casper Star-Tribune can provide him as he develops an interest in news writing, photojournalism, and videography. 
  • Mary Rucinski is an intern at the Laramie Boomerang. Mary is an aspiring journalist who, in addition to covering science topics with this internship, is eager to cover local government and public affairs.
  • Sarah Teter is a graduate student interning with the UW Haub School developing research briefs for public consumption and developing stories for Western Confluence, a publication of the Ruckelshaus Institute. Sara comes to this internship with several years of journalism experience, including her work at Laramie Live.
  • Jeff Victor is a graduate student interning as a science reporter with Wyoming Public Radio. In a former life as a Laramie Boomerang reporter, he was awarded six Pacemakers for his coverage of the university and Laramie culture.

These interns represent Wyoming EPSCoR’s Micro project and bring that voice to communities across the state. This project and partnership with the Wyoming Press Association will build bridges into new communities in unique and positive ways. 

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Powell Tribune’s Mark Davis Receives Wyoming EPSCoR Awards Inaugural Best of Science Journalism Award

Dr.Landreville presents best of Science Journalism Award to Davis
Consistent excellence in a body of work on scientific issues, clarity writing quality, accuracy, knowledge of subject matter in stories were the judging criteria for the first Wyoming EPSCoR's best of Science Journalism Award. Presented to Powell Tribune's Mark Davis at the Wyoming Press Association's winter convention.  The award is an effort to recognize excellence in a field that is relevant across a state whose economy is fueled by extraction industry and tourism. These two industries rely on science and science communicators. 

Davis submitted stories on the successful nesting curlews, a mammoth known as ‘Uncle George’ found near Cody, farming sage grouse, and local megafauna such as wild horses, and moose. . Davis' work was selected from fifty submissions representing reporters across the state. His content knowledge and stories were diverse and painted each of the subjects in an approachable and curious manner. "The judging panel was impressed by the wide range of science stories. We got to read stories about everything from Wyoming wildlife to Wyoming's energy industry to health care and brain science. We are excited that so many Wyoming journalists submitted for the award," explains Dr. Kristen Landreville. Landreville, a professor at the University of Wyoming in the department of Communication and Journalism, initiated this award to celebrate the science communication across Wyoming's geography.

Mark began his career at a Chicago Tribune suburban newspaper after studying journalism at the University of Nebraska. He worked for the Omaha World-Herald as a photojournalist and outdoor reporter. He enjoys hunting, fishing, birdwatching, and all outdoor sports.

The best of science journalism award establishes connections between Wyoming EPSCoR and the local news media across the state and the Wyoming Press association. Landreville explained, "There's great science journalism already happening in Wyoming, and we want to recognize it." It provides awardees with a cash prize and registration to the Wyoming Press Association's winter convention. The award is part of Wyoming EPSCoR's Track 1 grant, Mapping the Microbial Landscape of Wyoming.