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Call For 'Stand Alone' Journalism Course At USP

Call For 'Stand Alone' Journalism Course At USP

By Taniela Gavidi

SUVA (Wansolwara/Pacific Media Watch): The University of the South Pacific's former journalism coordinator, Dev Nadkarni, says journalism should be a stand-alone programme and not part of the Department of Literature and Language.

Nadkarni¹s comments appear in the April issue of the programme¹s quarterly newspaper, Wansolwara.

Nadkarni, who left the university last month after 15 months as the coordinator, said it was rare to find a journalism programme in a school of study that had little to do with communication arts and technologies.

Writing in the paper¹s Fourth Estate column, journalism lecturer Shailendra Singh notes that this year marks the programme¹s 10th anniversary.

He says it is a milestone worth commemorating given the achievements and progress made by the programme.

But he says a "disturbing trend² is the preponderance of Fiji graduates in the last 10 years ­ 67 per cent - which was "unacceptable" for a regional journalism programme.

He pays tribute to those who contributed to the programme¹s development, such as the founding coordinator, Francois Turmel and New Zealander David Robie, who succeeded him.

He also highlights the role of the French government in providing funding to get the programme off the ground in 1994, and for its continued support.

Eight working journalists joined the programme this year.

With plenty of experience between them, these journalists told Wansolwara that they wanted to attain tertiary qualifications in order to be recognised as professionals and to command better working conditions.



PACIFIC MEDIA WATCH is an independent, non-profit, non-government organisation comprising journalists, lawyers, editors and other media workers, dedicated to examining issues of ethics, accountability, censorship, media freedom and media ownership in the Pacific region. Launched in October 1996, it has links with the Journalism Program at the University of the South Pacific, Bushfire Media based in Sydney, Journalism Studies at the University of PNG (UPNG), the Australian Centre for Independent Journalism (ACIJ), Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand, and Community Communications Online (c2o).

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