The National Association of Mass Communication Students, Adekunle Ajasin University chapter, observed a public/ symposium during her 15th annual press week with the theme: Digital age journalism; creating an enabling environment to foster communication development.
Media experts, departmental lecturers, dignitaries and students were in attendance to grace the occasion which was held on Tuesday at Obafemi Awolowo Multi-Purpose Hall (OBJ).
The Ag. HOD of the Department, Dr Olugbenga Abimbola who welcomed the guests also urged students to seize the opportunity to gain new knowledge from the speakers to hone their skills in preparing for the future.
Speaking at the event, the Chief Operations Officer, Crest FM, Mr Adeolu Gboyega reiterated that the media has evolved over the years and digital journalism, also known as online journalism has taken over the traditional media practices.
Adeolu noted that the presence of digital journalism in this age is good because it has made news reportage easier but on the other hand it came with its shortcomings.
“The urgent quest for information has led to this age of digital journalism and current media practitioners need to be ICT compliant. As a journalist, if you can not operate computer systems in this age, digital journalism might be leaving you out.
“A reporter now can be on the field or at the scene of the events and be reporting live to the mass media audiences unlike the antecedent way of gathering and reporting news. Digital journalism is good but it has its bad side.
“Digital media brought the challenges like reduction in the numbers of media employees because what five journalists could do before, a journalist can do it right on the spot with a phone or system even from home.”
He added that citizen journalism, bloggers, and the spread of fake news are part of the challenges of digital media but he echoed that media professionals should always fact-check news on social media through available fact-checking tools.
The guest speaker however encouraged the students to be creative and ensure that they develop the basic skills and requirements of digital journalism before leaving school.
“Develop meaningful content because our generation now spends the most time on social media. Our power as the media is the ability to change the narrative in society. Digital journalism has come to stay and we must embrace it with all it takes,” Adeolu disclosed.
Saheed Ibrahim who represented the NUJ Chairman Ondo State Council, Prince Leke Adegbite cited a goodwill message on behalf of the chairman promising that NUJ will continue to support campus journalism in AAUA and beyond.
“We appreciate the Students’ Association for instituting a program to immortalize the late Shola Ilesanmi’s memory. We will continue to support the students’ initiative.”
“I’m to inform you that Ondo NUJ will soon come with an innovation to support campus journalism and encourage Mass Comm students at AAUA,” he promised.
The incumbent AAUA Mass Communication president, Adagba Promise while giving a speech called for help reaffirming that upcoming media practitioners like students in this dispensation can not cope with the new development without the help of mainstream professionals.
“We call on media experts to support us and give us the proper orientation we need to know in order to excel in the media industry after school.”
Promise however applauded the efforts of the AAUA Mass Communication lecturers who have continued to inculcate knowledge in the students. He urged the students to take steps further to acquaint themselves with the new media developments.
Furthermore, in memory of the departmental alumnus, the late Shola Ilesanmi, Mrs Damilola Ilesanmi presented cash prizes to the winners of the Shola Ilesanmi Memorial Writing competition.
Press Week in AAUA is an annual celebration of the media students which usually takes place in the second semester. Several activities take place over the week.
The year activities are outlined as Monday for Corporate day/praise night, Tuesday for public lecture and symposium, Wednesday for cultural day/general cleaning/ palm wine/asun night with 400-level movie show (The Saga), Thursday for Old school/ indoor games/ cooking competition, Friday for Jumat service/ dinner and award night, Sunday for thanksgiving day.
Photo Credit: NAMACOS Media