National Association of Black Journalists visits FIU (includes video story)

The National Association of Black Journalists held a general meeting at Florida International University this past weekend. 

Chapter organizers are holding such meetings at different local colleges and universities as part of a college tour. Industry professionals such as WPLG evening news anchor Calvin Hughes, WPLG reporter Terrell Forney, and WFOR news anchor Chelsea Jones were in attendance along with many other notable figures.

Hughes is the South Florida chapter’s president who coordinated with the current members of the organization to collaborate with FIU’s Lee Caplin School of Journalism & Media. Professors Karla Kennedy and Susan Jacobson, along with Alexia Freeman, the senior coordinator of academic support services, combined to bring the event to life. Current students enrolled at FIU, former students and guest speakers were all in attendance. 

Jason Smith is the Director of Equity for Miami-Dade mayor and former scholarship recipient. He said: “In 1997 the South Florida chapter of the NABJ gave me a college scholarship. That really catapulted me to Howard University.”

The event also paid homage to legendary Miami Herald reporter and columnist Bea Hines. She was the first female Black reporter to write for the Herald. Her mission was to provide a voice to the Black communities in Miami in neighborhoods such as Liberty City and Overtown. Hines has written children’s books, traveled around the nation, and served as a guest speaker at various colleges and universities. She shared her experiences. 

Hughes had this to say about Hines’s expansive career as a reporter for the Miami Herald: “No one believed in her, but she believed in herself.”

Hines was even nominated for a Pulitzer for one of her columns. Originally, Hines wanted to be a teacher but after a college professor read one of her papers, they suggested she change her major to journalism. 

The local chapter is looking to provide current students in high school and college with scholastic opportunities. There are plans to host a luncheon and award scholarships.

Stanley Beaubrun is a senior whose interests include traveling, going to the beach, and reading books. After graduation he  hopes to work in television and radio.