WIJ workshop: The ‘kids are all right’ but burnout is an issue

May 02, 2024 at 01:15 pm by admin

Student and early-career journalists are doing “incredible work,” Dana Piccoli says, following a visit to the Reynolds Institute’s Women in Journalism workshop.

“Tenacious and curious, they shared their ideas and struggles –learned ways to better advocate for themselves and their communities,” the Local Media Association managing director reported following a visit to the event at the University of Missouri.

“I know the future of the industry is in good hands if these women are leading the way.”

Piccoli was a presenter at the workshop at which 50 women from around the US gathered for three days of intensive workshops, presentations “and some much-needed decompressing”.

It was hosted by founder Kat Duncan, bringing together women journalists of all experience levels and backgrounds, from early career and student journalists to Pulitzer-winning industry veterans.

Piccoli says she left the workshop feeling energized and excited about the future of journalism and brought away many ideas she hopes to implement.

Among her takeaways was that burnout is a big issue. Attendees expressed feeling overwhelmed and needing to be adequately supported by their industry. “Between the massive layoffs in the media industry, the intense nature of the content many of us produce, and trying to balance family and work, the women in this workshop were feeling the heat of burnout,” she says.

The workshop featured a session by Marissa Lang from the Washington Post in which she shared how to stand up for what you need in the workplace, while Brown University School of Public Health professor Stefanie Friedhoff spoke on self-care for the resilient journalist, “acknowledging the trauma we can experience as journalists and how to give ourselves outlets and grace”.

Piccoli said the workshop also focussed on the industry’s vulnerability to data breaches, with Freedom of the Press Foundation digital security trainer Davis Erin Anderson bringing jaw-dropping insights on how easily information can be accessed. “Many of the products we use daily on our phones and computers have weaknesses that can lead to treacherous situations,” she says.

“Overall, the workshop provided an opportunity that women don’t always have in our newsrooms – to share, be heard and advocate for a better future for ourselves and our industry.”

Pictured: Some of the attendees at the Women in Journalism workshop.



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