Wednesday, January 14, 2009
A Three-Day Trip to The Volunteer State Begins
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn-- I've been in and through this great city lots of times, but I often don't stop. Tonight I'm parked in Chattanooga, my stopover point enroute to a meeting on the University of Tennessee campus.
I've called this trip my -- "Journey to Big Orange Country" because it's a little weird visiting the home turf of one of the biggest rivals of both my present employer and my alma mater. At University of Alabama, we have the third Saturday in October circled on our calendar. Whether it's in Tuscaloosa or in Knoxville, the matchup between the Vols and the Crimson Tide is always a grudge match.
Likewise when I was at my alma mater, The University of Georgia, we knew The Vols were always one of our biggest barriers to an SEC East Championship.
But, football season is over. The Vols have a new coach and both UGA and UA beat them this past year. (Thanks for that!) So, at least for 11 months, we can be on the same side -- working toward educating students about web journalism and how to deal in a world of journalism that is changing seemingly by the hour.
I've been looking forward to coming to UT-Knoxville for a few weeks. It's actually a nice campus, one I visited even before deciding to go to graduate school.
I'll save the trip down memory lane-- and look ahead to the inaugural meeting of the Intercollegiate Online News Association (ICONN), a group of advocates for and instructors of online journalism.
Our friends at the Tennessee Journalist are hosting us. I'm just in awe at what the Tennessee Journalist has accomplished in a few short years. It will be great to meet some of the students beyond this Web site.
One of the outcomes of this gathering we hope will be the establishment of the Intercollegiate Online News Network, a wire service to which my students at University of Alabama will be able to contribute and draw from as they work on our Dateline Alabama Web site.