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Campus Reporter, CJID, Train 40 MAPOLY Students to Carry Out Evidence-Based Reporting

Campus Reporter, a journalism project of the Centre for Journalism Innovation and Development (CJID), recently trained 40 Mass Communication students and campus journalists in the Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Abeokuta, Ogun State. 

The project is built on evidence-based ethical reporting and youth engagement initiatives in campuses around Africa and has trained over 3,500 students across 35 campuses in West Africa.

The four-day training was held at the institution’s Skill Acquisition Center from 5 September to 9 September, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.

In the introductory remarks by Busola Ajibola, the Deputy Director of the Journalism Program at the CJID, she noted that MAPOLY is the 35th institution the centre has trained in West Africa, and she appreciated the MAPOLY management for their support in making the training possible.

The training engaged the students on ways journalism can be utilised effectively. They were taken through sessions on Data Journalism, Fact-checking, Investigative Journalism, Solutions Journalism, Multimedia Journalism, and Gender reporting, which were facilitated by renowned journalists from the Premium Times, BBC, Dubawa and CJID.

The training faculty grouped the participants to ascertain their understanding of the courses taught. It required them to spotlight underreported issues in their institution/localities and report them based on the knowledge gained from the training so far.

On the last day, after submitting and assessing their report drafts, the training faculty noted that their efforts to instil the ethics of journalism and the importance of evidence-based reporting in the students had been achieved.  

Ms. Ajibola, in an interview, said, “On Day 1, the group of students were reserved in their shells and not speaking; but as days went by, we saw how they unraveled and incorporated knowledge on Data Journalism, Ethics, Source Mapping, Fact-Checking and Gender Inclusion, in their stories after returning from the field.”

Busola Ajibola teaching the participants gender-sensitive reporting

“They demonstrated the power of evidence-based reporting and what young people can do if we equip them with the capacity they need. On this fourth day that we are leaving and with the quality of the stories they have shared, we will say we have successfully achieved our goal”, she concluded.

A participant in the training and president of Press Club MAPOLY, Oyebola Moyinoluwa, appreciated the organisers of the Journalism Clinic and stated that the sessions were beyond her expectations.

“What I can say about the concluded training is that it was an eye-opener. It was also engaging, impacting, informative and educating. These are not limited to what I can mention because it made me discover myself more, gave more insights on journalism and clarified my weeks, which I will be working on”, she said.

Another training participant, Rapheal Adepitan, said the experience has exposed him to the real world of journalism as he has only been aware of theories. 

He said, “I learnt more about investigative journalism beyond the theoretical aspects. I also learnt about Solution Journalism, Fact-Checking, Gender Balance, and Multimedia Journalism; they were all very insightful.”

As the journalism clinic ended, the Management of MAPOLY, including the Rector, Dr Adeoye Odedeji; Deputy Rector, Dr Yetunde Lanre-Iyanda; Director of Students’ Affairs, Dr Kolawole Amos, and the Bursar, Mr. Fatai Yekini, credited the facilitators for the initiative to develop the students’ skills and congratulated the participants.

The institution’s management advised them to make good use of the skills, techniques and competence they have gotten to enhance their practice of journalism for the betterment of society.

“I want to congratulate you for having the rare privilege of having access to information, techniques, skills, and competence to create the environment you are also beneficiaries of. Whatever change you birth through your journalism is not only meant for some people somewhere. You are equally a beneficiary of that good or progress you have created through your write-up”, the Rector noted.

Dr Odedeji giving his closing remarks.

He added that he does not want the information gained to go extinct after the training because the relevance is what comes from it. 

“I want you not to allow this to die at this venue. The importance, relevance, and usefulness of this training is the aftereffect so that by the time you graduate, you will be counting the number of issues that you have resolved through your writings, and that will be your testimonials, but this can only be achieved through hard work, consistency, focus.”

During the closing ceremony, participants were presented with certificates. They were also informed that they can send their stories to the Campus Reporter editor for editing and publishing. 


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