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KNOXVILLE — After a semester of working together virtually, journalism and electronic media students at the University of Tennessee and several media professionals will meet face-to-face Wednesday and Thursday, Feb. 20-21, for Student Media Convergence Week.

The event is one component of the yearlong Tennessee Journalist Web Journalism Project, an endeavor to bring online journalism professionals into the classroom. The Tennessee Journalist, or, is the convergence media Web site of the School of Journalism and Electronic Media (JEM).

The project is supported by a $50,000 grant from the Scripps Howard Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the E.W. Scripps Co.

Student Media Convergence Week is the second of the project’s three components, which include virtual team teaching and two workshops.

During this event, professionals-in-residence who have been team teaching with JEM faculty members using methods such as Webcams and e-mail will visit campus. While here, they will lecture in several journalism and electronic media classes, hold a panel discussion on careers online, and review and discuss Web team-teaching concepts, processes and materials with their faculty partners and other JEM faculty members.

In addition, professional-in-residence Bob Benz of Maroon Ventures will present “Disruptive Journalism: A 21st Century Strategy for News Coverage” at a dinner for JEM students and faculty members. Before joining Maroon Ventures, Benz was vice president of interactive media for Scripps Newspapers.

Other professionals-in-residence include:

• Katie Allison Granju, senior online producer at, the online home of Knoxville’s Gannett/NBC TV affiliate, and contributor to a variety of online and print publications, including,, the New York Times,, Cooking Light, Parenting and the Chicago Tribune.

• Staci Wolfe, senior Internet marketing manager for Lucasfilm Ltd. in San Francisco.

• Margaret “Peggy” Collins, multimedia editor and producer for

• Patrick Beeson, project manager with the E.W. Scripps Co. in Knoxville.

The second workshop and final component of the project, “Web Journalism: A Public Conversation,” is scheduled for April 3-4.

The School of Journalism and Electronic Media is one of four schools that make up UT’s College of Communication and Information. The college also includes the School of Advertising and Public Relations, the School of Communication Studies and the School of Information Sciences. It is home to one of the oldest doctoral programs in communication and information in the southeastern United States.


April Moore, (865) 974-0463,
Amy Blakely, (865) 974-5034,