A $2.5 million gift from Bill and Kathy Scripps to the College of Media, Communication and Information establishes support for a specialized student news course, CU News Corps, into perpetuity.
“Bill and Kathy recognize how essential it is for students to gain hands-on experience in addition to a broad liberal arts education,” said CMCI Dean Lori Bergen. “This gift establishes the Scripps CU News Corps Endowment, which supports the college’s mission to give students unique opportunities to develop and learn while creating a positive community impact.”
The Department of Journalism course operates as an investigative news outlet, providing package-driven, long-form journalism to several of Colorado’s top professional media organizations, including the Denver Post and 9News Denver. Students in the course report on key Colorado issues, with previous topics including crime, immigration and political fact checking centered on the 2016 election.
“This endowment means that News Corps students will have the funding to pursue stories about some of the complex issues facing Colorado and the Rocky Mountain West using state-of-the-art reporting and storytelling techniques,” said Department of Journalism Chair Elizabeth Skewes. “And this year, News Corps has spearheaded a new partnership with Colorado Public Television to deliver an hour long, prime-time program of original content for viewers along the Front Range.”
“We were introduced to the concept of News Corps in its early stages and liked the idea of students gaining hands-on experience for reporting and news gathering,” said Bill Scripps. “We started with a small gift, and increased that as we saw the success of the program.”
The Scripps’s son, Willie, and daughter, Shelby, both graduated from CMCI with degrees in communication, in 2015 and 2017, respectively.
The family, who love the mascot Ralphie and enjoy attending football and basketball games together, are generous supporters of CU Athletics, the Esteemed Scholars program and the Center for Community.
“In this rapidly changing media environment, CMCI offers a great opportunity for students to keep pace,” said Bill Scripps. “We thought it would be appropriate to endow News Corps so that it will be around for perpetuity.”
For more information, contact Assistant Dean for Communications and Engagement Malinda Miller at 303-492-8255.
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