2024 - Summer

Newsroom: From Pitch to Publish (Session 1)

Course Number: SS1: JOUR-UA 302.001

Day & Time: Tuesday, 12:00PM - 8:00PM

Location: 20 Cooper Square

Instructors: John Surico, Whitney Dangerfield

Syllabus: Download

Albert Class Number: 4949

A vibrant newsroom is filled with journalists evaluating the news of the day, week, month and year. Reporters are talking through ideas with editors, actively pitching, conducting interviews in the field, and giving story updates. Editors are helping to frame stories and take them through the production process. Fact-checkers are ensuring that the articles are accurate. And art departments are making sure the words have appropriate visuals, like photos and videos.

In this hands-on, interactive class, students will meet for a weekly day-long session, where they will cycle through that exact process, filling different roles of a newsroom all while learning how to hone their writing ideas and get stories across the finish line. The class will start with a pitch meeting, and then the bulk of the time in class will be dedicated to reporting, both inside and outside of 20 Cooper Square. The class will conclude with a follow-up meeting to review reporting and plan for the week ahead. Guest speakers, including seasoned editors and journalists, will also visit to offer their experience from the newsroom.

This class will partner with a set of pre-established media outlets who are open to reviewing pitches, offering students a unique, real-time opportunity to leave the class with clips for their portfolio. Graduate students will be required to finish the session with four publishable pieces; undergraduates will be required to finish with three. The goal of this class: learn how to frame ideas, report them out, and ultimately get them published. 

This class is co-taught by Whitney Dangerfield, the Publications Director at NYU Journalism and a former editor at The New York Times and The Atlantic, and John Surico, a prolific freelance writer whose work has been published in The New York Times, Bloomberg, and The Guardian.

Note: Open to undergraduate and graduate students. Counts as an elective for the journalism major and both journalism minors. Prerequisites for undergraduate students include Journalistic Inquiry: The Written Word and The Beat; prerequisites for graduate students include WR1. Exceptions must be approved by the professors.