School of Communication and Journalism to hold COJO Days


BROOKINGS – South Dakota State University’s School of Communication and Journalism will hold COJO Days April 15-17. Three professional communicators will visit the Brookings campus to provide insights on how to navigate the challenges of 21st century communication.

April 15

COJO Days begins April 15 with Andy Boyle’s talk, “Creativity: Your Path to Getting a Dang Job,” at 5 p.m. in the Pheasant and Crest Room of the University Student Union.

Now the senior leader of the tech team for Axios, a news and information website founded in 2016, Boyle graduated in journalism from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and has also worked as a newspaper reporter. He regularly gives talks, writes for publications and consults on technology, business and media solutions.

For fun, he writes crime novels. His second book, coming spring 2020, is about why health and fitness are so hard. Boyle was in Brookings last fall for the South Dakota Festival of Books. He lives and works in Chicago. The South Dakota Humanities Council and University Program Council are co-sponsoring his visit.

April 16

Boyle will speak April 16 at noon in Jacks’ Place in the University Student Union. He will discuss his book “Adulthood for Beginners: All the Life Secrets Nobody Bothered to Tell You.” In addition, he plans to visit several classes those days.

The School of Communication and Journalism will honor graduating students, honor society inductees and others at 3:30 p.m. in the University Student Union’s Hobo Gallery/Campanile Room.

M. Sophia Newman will deliver “Interrupting Rape Worldwide: Notes on a Difficult Task” at 7 p.m. in the University Student Union’s Volstorff Ballroom.

Newman, a health journalist from Chicago, is the annual Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting campus guest. She will share the outcomes of investigative journalism in the United States and South Africa on whether a method used to successfully deter gun violence worldwide could be expanded to prevent rape and other acts of violence toward women.

Her lecture is being co-sponsored by the Brookings Domestic Abuse Shelter, the South Dakota World Affairs Council and the SDSU women’s and gender studies program. Newman has been published in The Atlantic, Religion & Politics, Tricycle, Vice, Vox, Tin House, Literary Hub, Next City and elsewhere, as well as a medical editor and a public health professional.

With a B.S. degree in cell and molecular biology from Tulane and a master’s degree in public health from the University of Illinois at Chicago, Newman participated in a Fulbright Fellowship to Bangladesh in 2012. She taught academic writing to graduate students from 14 countries and published five global health research studies.

After a nine-story factory called Rana Plaza collapsed atop some 3,500 workers in April 2013, she published op-eds on public health angles of the atrocity. Within a couple of months, she parlayed this work into a full-fledged career in journalism. Like Boyle, Newman plans to visit several classes.

This year, the annual  Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting Campus Consortium event is funded by Karen Stuck, a native of Brentford. A 1966 South Dakota state graduate with a degree in journalism and home economics, Stuck is now retired and living in the Washington, D.C., area.

April 17

“This is Norman,” an inspiring minidocumentary about a 67-year-old blind man’s lifelong dream to visit Italy, will be shown April 17 at 7 p.m. in the South Dakota Art Museum. Kathleen Poliski, minidocumentary’s producer, director and editor, will participate in a question-and-answer session afterward.

Poliski is a video production specialist for Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals. She earned her B.S. in communication and media arts from Pennsylvania’s Neumann University and her Master in Mass Communication from South Dakota State’s online program. For her program-ending master’s project, Poliski worked on “This is Norman.” The showing is co-sponsored by the South Dakota Art Museum and SDSU’s Office of Disability Services. Poliski will also visit classes April 17-18.

The School of Communication and Journalism, established July 1, 2018, is part of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences.

For more information, email Betty Nelson at [email protected] or call 688-4171.

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