The Lumberjack, NAU’s student-run newspaper, will become a lab model beginning in the fall. Previously operating on its own budget, it will become part of the curriculum and be incorporated into the School of Communication.
“This is a step in making a converged media laboratory where various kinds of media are produced,” said Mark Neumann, director of the School of Communication. “WithThe Lumberjack as independent, it had to remain separate from the curriculum. Now all of these things can work together and integrate.”
As it is currently costly to produce a print newspaper and the industry is moving online, the aim is to use School of Communication resources to help develop The Lumberjack’s online presence with news articles and video clips.
Readers are unlikely to notice a change to the lab model, but they may notice more interactive multimedia onThe Lumberjack’s web site.
“The paper will allow for some new reporting we haven’t been able to do before,” Neumann said. “Moving to the lab model expands our resources for reporting and doing multimedia reports fort the web.”
For next year the operation of the newspaper will remain the same, Neumann explained, but the lab model will provide an opportunity for different kinds of journalism classes to develop content for newspaper and more faculty involvement.
“The student media center now becomes a great example of media convergence, which is where the industry is moving,” Neumann said. “It will be at the forefront of those changes happening in news out there.”
The curriculum is still in the planning stages, but the goal is to incorporate The Lumberjack more deeply into the school’s journalism and broadcast curriculum, allowing KJACK radio, NAZ Today and The Lumberjackto interact with one another.