IAIA selected by NBCUniversal for new journalism training program
February 1, 2021
SANTA FE, N.M. - NBCUniversal News Group launched a new journalism training program called NBCU Academy.
The goal is to offer resources to universities and colleges that are historically black, Hispanic-serving institutions and have a significant population of Latino, Asian, Black, Indigenous or tribal communities.
New Mexico's Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) is one of 17 colleges picked to be a part of the program.
"We knew that this was something that was going to strengthen our journalism courses," said Dr. Robert Martin, the president of IAIA.
He said IAIA was approached by NBCU Academy in late 2020 and they were excited for the opportunity it provided for Native students.
"Storytelling is an important part, or integral part of our culture, and we're naturally storytellers from an oral tradition. So we're looking forward to this commitment from NBC Universal Academy to increase diversity and equity and inclusion in the broadcast field," said Dr. Martin.
IAIA will receive $500,000 in grant money from the program over two years. Dr. Martin said the money will go towards scholarships, internships and seminar courses with guests including NBC journalists.
Dr. Martin is aiming for the program to start next fall.
"We will be recruiting students, and I know that once they learn of this program, this opportunity to work with NBC Universal, our NBC journalists, that it's going to be very attractive to our students," said Dr. Martin.
He said Indigenous journalists have faced challenges in mainstream media.
As an example, Dr. Martin talked about the coverage of the pandemic's impact on tribal lands. He said there aren't enough Natives telling those stories. He hopes the new partnership with NBCU Academy will give students a better chance to cover stories in their own voice.
"If we can see more of Indigenous people being trained and have the opportunity to work from the field, I think the stories from an Indigenous perspective are going to be qualitatively different. And we look forward to that," he said.