Teaching journalists who make a difference

Why Poynter?

For 35 years, Poynter has built a reputation for teaching journalism that is about more than the facts. We teach a journalism that aspires to make a difference—a journalism that helps people make better choices about their lives, and ultimately, about the lives of their neighborhoods, their towns and cities, our country.

We teach, but we do more. We inspire.

How? By teaching more than skill-building—urging journalism practitioners  to infuse their work with values—like independence, accuracy, fairness and empathy.

It works.

CBS Chief National Correspondent Byron Pitts is a Poynter alum. This is his testimony:

“The place changed my life both professionally and personally.  At Poynter you don’t simply learn the tools of your trade, you learn to sharpen them.”

“Changed my life… professionally and personally…”

Pitts is not alone. One newspaper editor, several months after attending a Poynter seminar, wrote to thank us:

“Our class changed my life. it gave me hope. it gave me confidence.”

“Changed my life…”

And still another editor, at the close of a seminar, shared this:

“When I came to Poynter, I was thinking about leaving journalism. Now I believe I can do it. I’m staying.”

To be sure, Poynter teaches skills. We teach those who manage, edit, produce, program, report, write, blog, photograph and design, whether they belong to news organizations or work as independent entrepreneurs. We teach those who teach, as well as students in middle school, high school and college—the journalists of tomorrow. And we teach members of the public, helping them better understand how journalism is produced and how to tell for themselves whether it’s credible.

Poynter’s reach

We teach in seminar rooms on our main campus in St. Petersburg.

We teach in newsrooms all over the world.

We teach online, allowing those in search of training to choose from hundreds of self-directed courses, online group seminars, Webinars, online chats, Podcasts and video tutorials.

We teach leadership and management, ethical decision-making and the power of diversity; we teach editing, writing, reporting and new media skills; we teach those in broadcast, print and the Web; we teach those trying to remake their social media strategy and those searching for a reason to tweet.

Our participants, like our guest faculty, come to us from news organizations the world over. And as the journalism landscape changes, so does our audience. The Institute is taking a lead role in exploring the emergence of the “Fifth Estate” and how these new non-traditional providers of information are affecting the way the public receives and uses information.

Poynter is not about the journalism that was; but neither is it about a journalism that rejects all that went before.

Poynter is about journalism that endures. A journalism that is infused with values, with meaning, with hope.