Professor Smith’s wise nuggets

By Nicole Nankya

Prof. Ripley Lawrence Smith, a visiting professor at Uganda Christian University [UCU] ‘s School of Journalism, Media and Communication Bethel Christian University  has  advised  journalism students  to stick to the elements of good storytelling,

In the wake of changing technology and journalism practices :   “when you go out in the field  the software will change but what will still remain  are the elements of good storytelling no matter what channel you talking to.”  Said Smith.

He was  sharing  words of wisdom with  UCU media students and UCU Standard newspaper journalists,  in order  to enable them to be better journalists  in a changing digital world.

In a podcast  hosted by  The Standard’s  Derrick Muduku,   Smith  emphasized that they should embrace new technological and audience trends. He encouraged journalists to  get acquainted with audio production  skills.   

“In the United States of America    students no longer listen to radio.  Podcasts are what they listen to” said Smith .

Smith came to UCU’s School of Journalism  following an invitation by  the Dean   Prof .Monica Chibita to do some seminars with the graduating students in the school. 

“Knowing that UCU has  good journalism and mass communication programs which is my area, I thought why not only explore partnerships with UCU, while also doing  seminars with the graduating students of the school,” Smith added.

He went ahead to outline some of the benefits his university can  offer to UCU  such as  student exchange programs, research avenues and story telling programmes.

He also hopes to produce a magazine with the help of the students, this is a practicality of his story telling programmes which involves  faculty  and students of his university  travelling  out to various countries such as Morocco,  and working  with the local community to  co- produce a magazine and create stories . He believes  this will  enable cooperation between the students of the two universities ( Bethel and UCU).  

” We  work together to produce and create stories  so as to produce  a magazine, this is one of the areas students can  come and work with each other”, he said.

Prof. Smith Ripley Lawrence currently works as  Chair of  the department of communication studies, Bethel University ( Minnesota) which awarded  him a sabbatical that enabled him come to UCU.