Sunday - September 15, 2019
Major Donation Made To UNC-CH Journalism Program
Written by Staff   
Tuesday, 10 September 2019 11:32

CHAPEL HILL – The owner of 10 daily newspapers is donating $25 million dollars to the UNC-Chapel Hill school of Journalism.

Alumnus Walter Hussman Jr’s donation will lead to the naming of University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Hussman School of Journalism and Media.

“I believe that by adopting these core values, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's journalism school can be the leader and serve as an example for other journalism schools in America to follow,” said Hussman, the chairman of WEHCO Media Inc., which owns newspapers, magazines and cable television systems in six states. “This is a key reason why we enthusiastically support the school and the University. This is a first, but important step, in renewing the public's trust in our profession and the news media.”

“This naming gift provides $25 million in endowed funds to build for the future and invest in the people who have made this school a national leader — our professors, our staff, our students and all of the promise they represent,” said Susan King, dean of the Hussman School. “The Hussman family’s passion for journalism is based on unwavering values. Their generosity and vision extend transformational support across all of the media disciplines that we teach and research and serve. Core values are at the root of all we do.”

With this, the largest single gift ever made to the school, the Hussman School will become the fifth named school at Carolina, joining Kenan-Flagler Business School, Gillings School of Global Public Health, Eshelman School of Pharmacy and Adams School of Dentistry.

“From Edward Kidder Graham’s first journalism course at Carolina to today, UNC’s School of Media and Journalism has prepared thousands of students to discover the truth, foster democracy through dynamic communications and ignite the public conversation across our state and around the world,” said Interim Chancellor Kevin M. Guskiewicz. “We are grateful that one of those students, Walter Hussman, is investing to make this school the leading force for good journalism in our state. His core values reflect the priorities and principles of the entire community here at Carolina, and it is a privilege to name our school in honor of his visionary leadership in media.”

Carolina first launched the University’s highly regarded journalism program as a department in the College of Arts & Sciences in 1924, 15 years after Edward Kidder Graham taught the first journalism course at the University. It was designated a professional school in 1950, and today it proudly boasts numerous NC Media and Journalism Hall of Famers as alumni, including legendary journalist Charles Kuralt, advertising visionary Susan Credle, media innovator Jason Kilar and ESPN icon Stuart Scott.

“It would be difficult to overstate the impact of this gift during this pivotal time of economic dislocation and mounting distrust amid campaigns to discredit reporting, journalism and media institutions,” King said. “The Hussman family’s stalwart belief in the future of journalism, its critical role in a democratic society — and our school as a guardian of its foundational values — is both a signal and calling to remain grounded in principles as we innovate, invent and lead the way through the challenges of this era.”

The Hussman family previously established two endowed professorships at Carolina — in the journalism school and the School of Education.

 

 
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