Tip: Press the ESC key to instantly call up a feed containing all the newest SPJ news and updates to our social channels.
For more than 100 years the Society of Professional Journalists has been dedicated to encouraging a climate in which journalism can be practiced more freely and fully, stimulating high standards and ethical behavior in the practice of journalism and perpetuating a free press.
We invite you to join us today!
Since its founding in 1961, the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation has promoted excellence and ethics in journalism. The SDX Foundation is a tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) organization that supports the educational programs of the Society of Professional Journalists and serves the professional needs of journalists and students pursuing careers in journalism.
Excellence in Journalism is the national journalism conference of the Society of Professional Journalists and the Radio Television Digital News Association. Join us in September in Nashville for training, networking, workshops and more!
We invite you to join us today!
News and More
Click to Expand Instantly
SPJ supports student editor at the University of Miami
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Patrick Yack, president of FSNE, editor of the Florida Times-Union, 904-359-4290.
Robert Leger, national president of SPJ, 417-836-1113 or cell 417-425-9140 or firstname.lastname@example.org
INDIANAPOLIS -- The Society of Professional Journalists and the Florida Society of Newspaper Editors today called on the University of Miami to support a student newspaper editor for his principled stand in support of freedom of the press.
Jordan Rodack was editor of the campus’ student newspaper, the Hurricane, last year. After the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, members of a University of Miami fraternity went across the campus with a video camera asking questions that denigrated Arabs and Muslims. A student complained, and the newspaper did a story. Rodack, a member of the fraternity, recused himself from discussions about the story.
Nevertheless, virtually every copy of that issue of the paper was removed from racks by members of the fraternity. Rodack was subjected to harassment from fraternity members, and eventually left the group.
The university initially disciplined students, but later rescinded that action without explanation.
The SPJ letter calls on University of Miami President Donna Shalala to acknowledge the university did not act quickly or properly against those who stole the newspapers or intimidated Rodack. It notes that even though the papers are free, precedent exists to punish those who deprive student journalists and advertisers from delivering a message. The letter also notes that the university has misinterpreted the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act to defend keeping secret the result of disciplinary actions. The act plainly allows for final results of disciplinary proceedings to be made public.
The FSNE letter said the handling of the Rodack case “raises serious questions about the university's commitment to ensuring a free and robust student press.” It also urged the administration to stop turning a blind eye toward the harassment of the student editor and his newspaper.
For copies of the letters, visit www.spj.org/FLLetter.pdf.