Tuesday, January 29, 2013

UIS Public Affairs Program has produced top notch grads

I was delighted to be part of the UIS Public Affairs Program's Hall of Fame Induction celebration last evening. This UIS Master's program is the best in the nation at preparing journalists for successful careers in public reporting, in part because students get so much hands-on experience working in the state capital with professional journalists. Our three 2012-13 inductees, all alums of the program, include Nina Burleigh, author of five books including the best seller, The Fatal Gift of Beauty, Jim Prather, Executive Vice President of Journal Broadcast Group and Jim Webb, Editor for the Chicago Tribune. The keynote speaker last night was Patty Culhane, another PAR grad who is the White House correspondent for Al Jazeera. Nina, Jim, Jim and Patty are among the over 500 graduates of the UIS PAR program who have gone on to exceptional careers in journalism. I am so proud of these UIS graduates and so admire the dedication and commitment of PAR Program Director Charlie Wheeler and all the faculty who contribute to delivering this exceptional program or our students. And by the way, another PAR graduate is going to be the UIS Commencement speaker this May … Kathy Best, who has won a Pulitzer Prize and works for the Seattle Times.