Backpack journalism moved further into the mainstream last week when AU graduate student David Coffey and I traveled to New York where we finalized his internship with the Associated Press in Bangkok, Thailand. During his 12-week internship, David will employ the backpack journalism model that I’ve been teaching at American University as well as at the Backpack Journalism Workshops With NOW on PBS.
David’s is the first “formal” foreign internship that the AP is conducting with any U.S. university. David will be leaving for Bangkok in late June for the internship, for which he will receive university credit. In addition to focusing on the “backpack journalism” model of visual storytelling, he also will contribute to other components of the AP output.
David and I met with a number of AP representatives, perhaps most importantly with Santiago Lyon, AP’s Director of Photography. A friend and colleague from my Central America days, Santiago has been the point man with whom I’ve been working some months to set up the internship. We all are excited by the possibilities here.
I think this internship is a great example of how the backpack journalism model is moving into the mainstream arena. The AP is, after all, the largest and arguably the most important news and information-gathering organization in the world.
David and will keep you posted on his progress.