Panel to focus on minorities in journalism

By Carol Ekstrom

National Hispanic Month activities continue this week with a panel discussion today tackling “Diversity in the Media,” sponsored by NIU’s journalism department.

The panel will consist of three guest speakers, including Anita Husslin, a reporter from the Southtown Economist, Ed Tijerena, a Chicago Tribune reporter and Frank Diaz, Channel 44 news director.

The speakers will examine the role of minorities in the media at 7 p.m. today at the Holmes Student Center Heritage Room.

Journalism Department Chair Donald Brod will be the moderator for the event.

Brod said each speaker will open with a statement and questions from the audience will follow.

“The questions will probably deal with Latinos in the media, and how Latino news is covered,” he said.

Brod said all journalism students can benefit from the panel discussion.

“This is not exclusively for minority journalism students because coverage of minority matters is something that everyone in journalism needs to know how to do.”

Chair of National Hispanic Month Alice Rioseco said the media needs to learn how to attract a minority audience.

“I learned from a job I had last summer at a newspaper that the media is struggling to broaden their audience,” Rioseco said, who is also a senior journalism major. “One way to do this is to not only hire minorities, but also to write articles that will attract minorities.”

Rioseco said journalism students need to realize that they will be working with people from different backgrounds.

“All journalism students should attend the panel discussion tonight because they can learn how to work with others who are different from them,” she said.

National Hispanic Month concludes Thursday with a dance performance by Quetzalcoatl and Danca Quente at noon in the King Memorial Commons.

There also will be a film Thursday at 8:45 p.m. in Cole Hall titled “Tangos, and the Edile of Gardel.”