Tag Archives: Philip Merrill College of Journalism

Master’s Degree Program Open Houses Announced

M.J. student Hannah Klarner on a ViewFinder shoot at the Anne Arundel County Fair. Photo: Bethany Swain.

Master’s student Hannah Klarner. Photo: Bethany Swain.

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (Oct. 7) – If you’re interested in learning how to tell great stories or just jump-start your journalism career, a Merrill College master’s degree is the answer. Come learn more about what it takes  to become a fearless journalist during one of our four upcoming open houses.

The Merrill College Graduate Program Offers:

  • A full-time master’s degree program in just one year;
  • A Saturday journalism certificate program for working journalists;
  • Tracts in multiplatform; broadcast; or returning journalist;
  • A focus on public affairs, sports, investigative and computational journalism;
  • Real-world, hands-on experience using the latest technologies including 360 video;
  • Taking classes from award-winning faculty members;
  • The ability to study and work just minutes from Washington, D.C., Annapolis and Baltimore.
  • Merrill College is ranked the #6 journalism school in the nation by USAToday College for 2016.

Open Houses Will Be Held:

Monday, Oct. 17, 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., 1206 Knight Hall
Friday, Nov. 4, 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., CNS D.C. Bureau
(Concourse Level C; Ronald Reagan Building & International Trade Center, 1300 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, D.C.)
Monday, Nov. 21, 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., CNS D.C. Bureau
Friday, Dec. 16, 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., 1206 Knight Hall

Please RSVP by clicking on the above links to the open house you would like to attend.

Who Will Be Taking Part:


Adrianne Flynn
Internships and Career Development Director

Brothel Next Door Wins General Assembly Citation

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (Oct. 5) – The Maryland General Assembly recently approved an official citation offering congratulations to the Philip Merrill College of Journalism’s student-run Capital News Service for its award-winning “Brothel Next Door” project. The citation was signed by delegate Jeff Waldstreicher of Montgomery County.

The CNS project – which involved some 100 students and five classes last school year, recently was named “The best of the best in collegiate journalism” by the Society of Professional Journalists.

The citation offers “sincerest congratulations” to CNS “in recognition of their dedication to excellence in journalism, as exemplified by the presentation of Best in Show in the Mark of Excellence Awards from the Society of Professional Journalists.”

CNS Citation.


Women Photojournalists of Washington Exhibit Debuts in Gaylord Library

WPOW Best in Show photo by Susana Raab.

Best in Show photo by Susana Raab.

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (Oct. 5) – The Philip Merrill College of Journalism and the Women Photojournalists of Washington (WPOW) will hold an opening reception for WPOW’s traveling exhibit in the Gaylord Library of Knight Hall on Friday, Oct. 14 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

The event will coincide with the Merrill College Family Weekend reception for students and their families in the Atrium of Knight Hall. The exhibit will be available to faculty, students and guests of the Philip Merrill College of Journalism throughout the school year.

WPOW’s 2015 Annual Juried Photography Exhibition

The exhibition features the work of Women Photojournalists of Washington members, on women’s issues, including the Best in Show image by Susana Raab.

Featured photographers:

Aude Guerrucci; Allison Shelley; Becky Harlan; Caroline Lacey; Ellie Van Houtte; Erin Scott; Gabriela Bulisova; Gabriella Demczuk; Jacquelyn Martin; Kristin Adair; Kate Warren; Lindsey Leger; Leigh Vogel; Lexey Swall; Lauren Schneiderman; Maria Daniel Balcazar; Stephanie Cordle Frankel; Sarah Miller; Susana Raab; Melissa Golden and Meghan Dhaliwal

WPOW also sincerely thanks:

  • Elizabeth Krist of National Geographic for curating the exhibition;
  • Nikon for donating a camera as a reward for the photographer selected as Best in Show and;
  • National Geographic Imaging for so generously printing all of the images for this exhibit and the traveling exhibition.

About the Women Photojournalists of Washington

Women Photojournalists of Washington is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization with the mission to educate the public about the work and accomplishments of women in the field of photojournalism. The organization also instructs and trains women within the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area with the purpose of improving and developing their capabilities as photojournalists, photo editors and multimedia producers. WPOW strives to meet this goal with its educational and instructional activities, and by providing opportunities for women in the field to discuss the unique challenges they face.


Sandy Ciric, Director Of Photography At Getty Images News, Leslie dela Vega, Digital Director of Photography at Rollingstone.com and Judith Walgren, Director of Photography, The San Francisco Chronicle.

“Discharging Trouble” Looks at Maryland Nursing Homes

In Maryland, uneven oversight of nursing homes allows some patients to slip through the cracks.

UPDATE: Dec. 21, 2016: Maryland’s attorney general takes action against nursing home operator Neiswanger Management Services (NMS).  Attorney General Brian Frosh files suit in Montgomery County Circuit Court alleging NMS kicked out residents to increase Medicare payments. NMS denies any wrongdoing. See Washington Post reporter Dan Morse’s story for more.

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (Oct. 4) – A major new Capital News Service investigation of Maryland nursing homes called “Discharging Trouble” has found:

  • Patients like 59 year-old Vonda Wagner who literally fell into a “black hole” in the regulatory system designed to protect nursing home patients;
  • Maryland state nursing home regulators have a persistent staffing problem and are struggling to keep up;
  • Financial issues between two federal health insurance programs – Medicare and Medicaid – provides nursing home operators an incentive to discharge patients when the more generous Medicare benefit expires;
  • A creaky state regulatory system clashing with the bottom-line mentality of modern nursing home chains can leave vulnerable patients in unlicensed assisted living facilities that are often inadequate and dangerous.


The “Discharging Trouble” investigation was conducted last spring by students in then-Ph.D. student Rob Wells’ JOUR459e Business of Journalism class.

Now an assistant professor at the University of Arkansas, Wells wrote about the fearless journalism committed by his students:

“I am very proud of their work and dedication. The learning curve on this topic was steep and they put in an extraordinary effort to tie together the many threads. My hats are off especially to Zoe Sagalow, now a Merrill College graduate and a reporter at Tax Notes, and Morgan Eichensehr, also a Merrill graduate and a reporter at the Baltimore Business Journal.”

Wells added, “Sean Mussenden at Capital News Service (Digital Bureau Director) did a great job with the website and excellent editing. (Visiting Fellow) Tom Bettag and (Eaton Broadcast Chair) Mark Feldstein guided the video work. And (Abell Professor in Baltimore Journalism) Sandy Banisky devoted hours of her time brainstorming, editing, meeting with students and yet even more editing. I am honored to have worked with these students and first-class educators.”

Wells discussed the project with Merrill journalist Simone Thomas:

Zoe Sagalow – now a federal tax and data reporter at Tax Notes Today in Washington, D.C. – said, “I’m very glad that we found this story and that Merrill and CNS supported us in pursuing it. It was a rare and valuable experience to do investigative reporting while still in school. Rob Wells taught us about investigative reporting in general as well as specifics to apply to this significant project. He brought in other faculty to advise us on various aspects of the project. The way our class collaborated with other students and professors/editors outside of our class contributed to making CNS feel like a professional newsroom.”For more information contact:

David Ottalini
Sr. Communications Manager
Philip Merrill College of Journalism

Diakopoulos Wins Research Communicator Impact Award

UMD Assistant Professor Nick Diakopoulos - Philipo Merrill College of Journalism.

Assistant Professor Nick Diakopoulos

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (Oct. 2) – Merrill College Data Journalist Nick Diakopoulos has won the 2016 Research Communicator Impact Award from the University of Maryland.

In an email to Diakopoulos, Vice President and Chief Research Officer Pat O’Shea wrote, “Your proactive approach to sharing research knowledge is a commendable example of our responsibility as a public research university to not only create and understand knowledge, but to disseminate knowledge to solve today’s most challenging issues”

Diakopoulos said about the award, “I am honored to receive the Research Communicator Impact award which recognizes my efforts to publish research findings in a broad array of public-facing news outlets. I am particularly excited that the University of Maryland recognizes the importance of that work and indeed the obligation that universities now have to contribute to accessible knowledge for the public.”

Diakopoulos will be honored during the 18th Annual Research Leaders Luncheon on Tuesday, Oct. 18th from 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 pm in the Atrium of the Adele H. Stamp Student Union Building.