Lecture Audio & Video

Asheville Course 2014 Jul 14, 2014

Another WJI summer has come and gone. But it has not been forgotten. Click on the link to learn about the favorite memories, the greatest challenges, and the biggest lessons learned during the course by a great group of students. Many thanks to Katie Mullin for filming and editing this video scrapbook of a fun month of May exploring journalism from all angles with a group that Dr. Olasky called one of the hardest working he has ever seen!

 

Life Story: Religion Takes Shape in City Project by Bryanna Hampton Jun 1, 2011

NEW YORK – Strolling through a cemetery, Melissa Kimiadi stops and notices a chapel building hidden behind towering trees. She's armed with her pen and notebook, pulls off her backpack to dig out her camera and takes a snapshot of the near-vacant building.

Kimiadi has been doing this all morning and afternoon: riding in a car, navigating the way through Jamaica, Queens, and marking the route. When a religious site comes into view, Kimiadi hops out of the car to evaluate the site.

"Could you get a survey from the car?" Kimiadi asks her partner, Tony Carnes, the editor and publisher of A Journey through NYC Religions.   

Kimiadi, 24, works with Carnes on the Journey project logging a church census of all the places of worship in New York City. Initially, this was a task to document all religious sites of any religion.

Kimiadi has been working with Carnes since January, 2010, as a research assistant to work on the census for the Council of Churches of the City of New York. At each stop, the team distributes a survey to the religious leaders with a stamped form to return in the mail. If no one is there, the survey is left in the mailbox or in the door. Regardless, the team snaps photographs of the site and fills out basic contact and location information.

There are 6,374.9 miles of city streets. The team has covered about 70 percent of the city after starting the Journey project in July, 2010. More than 60,000 names and numbers are in the database of information gathered from the census. Now, more than 900,000 viewers have visited the Journey web site.

The team soon realized there was more to the project than numbers. Carnes set a new idea in motion.

For the rest of the story, click here.

Memorial Day Moment of Silence by Rosella Age May 30, 2011

MANHATTAN- Memorial Day in Riverside Park in the Upper West Side  featured Mayor Bloomberg as a speaker in honor of the 150th anniversary of the Civil War.

"This year as we commemorate the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War, it's humbling to think of how many Americans have given their lives for their country and for us," Mayor Bloomberg said to a crowd of veterans, family of lost service members, and sympathetic citizens.

Mayor Bloomberg reminded the New York crowd of the significance Memorial Day has in light of the 9/11 attacks.

"We are now approaching the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks and we recognize that nearly 90 New Yorkers in our armed services have fallen in the battle of the war on terror that began that terrible day."

The Soldier's and Sailor's Monument at Riverside Park was filled with more than 600 public watching 44 paced uniformed soldiers and sailors proceed the almost discordant bagpipes.

To read the entire article, click here.

Students Affected Through Increased Costs by Hannah Vanbiber May 28, 2011
Bringing the Butcher Back by Adrienne Belz May 26, 2010
Catholic Hospital Closings Plague the Northeast by Catherine Rogers May 26, 2010
Fashion Future Starts Now by Laura Vaillancourt May 26, 2010
Controversy at Ground Zero by Alicia Cohn May 25, 2010
NYC commuters look to simpler travel options by Andrew Smith May 22, 2010

NEW YORK CITY – Many New Yorkers are saving money on their daily commute by choosing cheaper modes of travel.

According to a study by the New York City Center for Economic Opportunity released in March, most New York City residents choose to ride the subway, take a bus or just drive alone, rather than using the taxi system. Taxis are the most expensive and least-utilized options. Rising automated transportation costs, spurred by the May 2009 Metropolitan Transport Authority bailout, have made taxis even more expensive.

So because they are costless, walking or bicycling to work have become favorite options for some New York City residents – and city programs are encouraging it.

This movement toward alternative means of intra-city travel has gained support from New York City transportation officials. The New York Metropolitan Transportation Council has put together a Regional Transportation Plan for 2010 through 2035, which aims to help transportation grow with economic and technological innovations in the next 25 years.

NYMTC spokesperson Lisa Daglian said that the council’s bicycle and pedestrian programs are part of this long-term plan, particularly because they are so cost-effective.

“(Biking) is relatively inexpensive, particularly compared to the other modes of transportation,” Daglian said. “When gas prices were so particularly high last summer and the summer before, we definitely saw an increase in bike commuting. So the ideal would be to provide a seamless network of bikepaths and bikeways. That’s the goal.”

Over 10 percent of New Yorkers elect to utilize free transportation, according to the Center for Economic Opportunity report, which was mentioned in a May 9 article by Sam Roberts in the New York Times.

Other programs have encouraged New Yorkers to find alternate means of travel, such as Transportation Alternatives’ Bike to Work day on May 21, which is a “celebration of biking to work,” according to the Transportation Alternatives website.

Though biking only represented 0.9 percent of commuters in the Center for Economic Opportunity report, Transportation Alternatives is trying to get New Yorkers to embrace its benefits.

“New York is a transit town, it’s a walking town, it’s always going to be a good walking town,” said Wiley Norvell, communications director of Transportation Alternatives. “We’re trying to make it a good biking town too. That offers a pretty good relief value for a lot of people who are finding public transportation prohibitively expensive or inefficient and slow.”

Norvell stood in the middle of a busy office, as workers answered phone calls and hurriedly carried large boxes back and forth. Norvell explained that the “Bike to Work” day was the next morning, and the cluttered area around his desk testified to his deliberation.

But he believes it’s for a good cause.

“There’s a really viable and important health component to (riding a bike to work) – very strong environmental reasons, very strong cost reasons,” he said. “Fortunately bicycling is an elegant solution that solves all those problems at once. It’s good for the environment, it’s good for your bottom line, it’s good for transportation and efficient streets and it’s good for people’s health, so what reason do you have not to bike in a city in New York?”
 

Aspiring Athlete Draws Crowd With Freestyle Moves by Kevin Bratcher May 22, 2010
Cleveland's Classical Pride Journeys to House That Music Built by Hannah Yanega May 22, 2010
Cycling: The New Way to Commute by Lana Douglas May 22, 2010
Cyclists Face New Hazards, Are NYC’s Streets Safe for Bike Travel? by John Bianchi May 22, 2010
Donors Uphold Operation Exodus by Adrienne Belz May 22, 2010
‘Golden Boy’ Appeals to Crowds after 30 Years by Jonah Taylor May 22, 2010
iPad Sales Remain Strong by Alicia Cohn May 22, 2010
King Tut, So What? by Laura Vaillancourt May 22, 2010
Local Company Explores the Art of Coffee Making by April Windham May 22, 2010
Miracle for Alternative Transit on 34th Street by Sarah Einselen May 22, 2010
NYC Commuters Look to Simpler Travel Options by Andrew Smith May 22, 2010
Using History as a Tool for Social Change May 22, 2010
E-books Could Alter the Course of the Publishing Industry by Andrew Smith May 22, 2010
Artists return home after career move to NYC by Tim Meinch May 21, 2010

NEW YORK CITY—After a near three-year stay in New York City, two Asheville artists are  coming home.

Jason Weatherspoon and Lauren Gibbes helped start the Wedge studio alongside John Payne in the River Arts District after graduation from UNC Asheville in 2002.  Less than five years later, they moved to Brooklyn, where they established themselves as painters.

“We have done quite well in New York, well enough that we are buying our second duplex for investment purposes in Asheville,” Weatherspoon said Thursday outside his apartment in Manhattan.  “I'm not saying we're leaving forever, but we have things to do in North Carolina and our families are there.”

Weatherspoon said New York City was a great move for he and his wife, Gibbes, for career reasons and otherwise.  Both of them sold and displayed their work in multiple galleries around the city.

“New York is very complex; it is not so cut and dry as 'making it or not,'” he said.  “It's an international community that can connect you anywhere in the world.”

Surprisingly, the couple said they found a lot of similarities between life in Manhattan and Asheville.  Things were just bigger in New York.

“It's much like Asheville,” Weatherspoon said. “It's a macrocosm of what we experienced in Asheville. But on that same note, my life best friends are in Asheville, so I'm excited to see them.”

Although they thoroughly enjoy the culture and vast opportunities in the Big Apple, the two look forward to living farther off the street and experiencing a little more solitude.

“We found from the last year we were drawn to the park,” Weatherspoon said. “Then we just sort of realized we really miss nature, sunsets and skylines and mountain expanses. I think we're ready for the rejuvenation period, going back to the roots and seeing nature.”

Now in their 30s, the couple said they are thinking about the future and spending more time with their family and perhaps starting their own family. Asheville is a great place for this lifestyle, but they do not think they are saying goodbye to the city forever, Weatherspoon said.

“People live in New York for a few years then move to Berlin, Portland, L.A. or Asheville for a while then come back for a few months or another year. Once you have made professional connections in New York, in whatever your field, you are always a part of it,” he said.

The artists loaded a large U-Haul outside their apartment in Upper West Side Manhattan and bade farewell to the city Thursday afternoon. Their two dogs and many art pieces accompanied them on the journey to their new home in West Asheville.  Weatherspoon said they plan to work out of Randy Shull's studio in the River Arts District.

Young, Black & Republican Jul 1, 2009

Young, Black & Republican is the first episode in a series called INTERVIEW. INTERVIEW explores issues that are often underrepresented, misunderstood, and sometimes controversial. Young, Black & Republican features, well, young black Republicans sharing their point of view while dispelling certain myths along the way.

Good Will Hinton interviews Eric Metaxas Apr 2, 2009
Eric Metaxas reporting on the modern Slave Trade Apr 2, 2008

Scott Sherman interviews Eric Metaxas, Author of "Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and the Heroic Campaign to End Slavery", and David Batstone, businessman, professor and journalist. The topic of discussion is slavery, past and present. The panelists seek to educate viewers on the history of the struggle against slavery, and how they can get involved to defeat the horrors of modern-day slavery.

Barista School Has More Than Coffee Brewing by Trevor Normile
Dennis Muhumuza, Ugandan journalist and Belz Fellow
Folashade Adebayo, Nigerian journalist and 2012 Belz Fellow
2012 African Workshop
Asheville Course 2013