Missouri School of Journalism Hosts Alumni Reception at National Association of Black Journalists Convention in New Orleans

Arianna Poindexter, Leon Carter, Nischelle Turner, Mark Russell and David Kurpius

From left to right: Arianna Poindexter, BJ ’16, reporter/anchor at WMC Action News 5 in Memphis; Leon Carter, vice president and editorial director at ESPN; Nischelle Turner, BJ ’98, correspondent at Entertainment Tonight; Mark Russell, BJ ’84, executive editor of the Memphis Commercial Appeal; David Kurpius, dean of the Missouri School of Journalism.

New Orleans (Aug. 18, 2017) — Missouri School of Journalism alumni and friends gathered at the National Association of Black Journalists convention on August 11th for a reception at Gordon Biersch Brewery to meet Dean David Kurpius, network and learn about the School’s recent diversity and inclusion efforts.

More than 60 alumni, students and friends attending the NABJ convention and representing media outlets from across the country attended the reception. Kurpius addressed the group and updated them on the school and the university. One of the highlights Kurpius shared included the school’s new Student Development, Diversity and Inclusion program, which creates a pipeline to prepare diverse new talent to feed the journalism and strategic communication professions. The Missouri School of Journalism is the first school to put together a comprehensive high school-to-industry program to build a sustainable pipeline of diverse talent for journalism and strategic communication.

“We are asking journalism and strategic communication organizations to join us in addressing the long-standing problem of diversity in the professions. With industry investment, we will be able to create opportunity and build a program that leads to lasting change,” said Ron Kelley, executive director, student development, diversity and inclusion.

Kurpius also updated the group on the School’s diversity plan and its ongoing commitment to diversity hiring.

Among the most recent faculty appointments are five African-American faculty representing a wide range of scholarly and professional backgrounds that will enhance the School’s teaching and research.

“The bold steps we’re undertaking are part of the School’s ongoing efforts to reaffirm our commitment to diversity and inclusion and our mission of setting the standard for quality journalism and strategic communication worldwide,” said Kurpius.

Updated: October 23, 2020

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