SF State News {University Communications}

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New study abroad program teaches multimedia skills

November 5, 2008 -- Students can now spend a summer learning multimedia storytelling skills in Italy or Northern Ireland as part of a new study abroad program. Offered by SF State in partnership with the Institute for Education in International Media, the program will give students a taste of life as a foreign correspondent.

Photograph of the rooftops of Urbino, the Italian town where students can learn multimedia skills in a new study abroad program.

Urbino, the Italian town where students can learn multimedia skills in a new study abroad program. Credit: Giovanni Caputo

On location in Urbino, a Renaissance hill town in central Italy, or in the Northern Irish town of Armagh, students will spend one month gathering stories and producing an online multimedia documentary about the local community.

"Multimedia and globalization come together in this new study abroad program. These are two of the biggest issues in journalism today," said Rachele Kanigel, assistant professor of journalism at SF State. "This program helps the journalism department to prepare graduates for the changing world of journalism and it adds a global dimension to our curriculum."

The study abroad programs will begin with an intensive media boot camp that will equip students to write for the Web, shoot and edit video, take photographs and create Web pages. In addition, students will learn intercultural communication skills and take Italian classes at the Urbino program and Irish history and culture classes in the Armagh program.

Photograph of the rooftops of Armagh, Northern Ireland, the location of a new SF State study abroad program.

The historic town of Arrmagh, Northern Ireland, one of the locations offered by a new SF State study abroad program. Credit: Judith Dobler

"Both towns are off the beaten tourist track, allowing students to immerse themselves in the local culture and investigate stories that are quite different from those in the U.S.," said Kanigel, who will be program director at Urbino where she will also teach writing. "Students will gain experience working with translators or people with strong accents and they will learn how to make local stories global and global stories local."

The new programs are open to students of all majors at SF State as well as students from other U.S. universities. Kanigel said the multimedia skills taught in the program will be valuable to students with a range of career goals beyond journalism. "A lot of people today want to write blogs, add video to YouTube or set up their own Web sites," Kanigel said. "Multimedia is not only vital for 21st century journalists, it is important for 21st century citizens."

The application deadline for the summer 2009 programs is February 1, 2009. Participants can earn three units of credit through the College of Extended Learning at SF State. A limited number of scholarships are available. See the Institute for Education in International Media Web site for further details: http://www.ieimedia.com/

-- Elaine Bible


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