WJI 2015 Begins!

May 17, 2015

Day 1 - WJI Blog

By Bethany Forster from Gaston, Oregon 

Some by plane, some by car, some by foot, we all made our way to WORLD’s stylish brick office. Special WORLD reporting notebooks, an assortment of pens, candy, schedules, and a whiteboard welcomed us to the room where we will bleed, cry, and sweat for the next two weeks.


Then the moment of all beginnings, when Lee Pitts arrived on the scene. As glimpsed in pre-course emails, Mr. Pitts’ straight-faced wit and easy conversation put our perspiring nerves at ease. Each of the thirteen students introduced themselves and, as per Mr. Pitts’ instructions, lied to their new brothers in arms in a classic icebreaker. No interpretive dancing occurred. It was mentioned.


After being sworn in to our obligations as upstanding citizens and, hopefully, worthy credits to WJI around town, Mr. Pitts ran through an orientation outline. Don’t be late. Have your personal blog and google docs ready to go. Don’t be late. Haul your full-page list of journalism equipment at all times. Don’t be late. Report transportation expenses to WORLD. Oh, and don’t be late.


Sandy Barwick, a WORLD employee who is also taking the course, helped by answering questions and providing a calming influence. WORLD CEO Kevin Martin and his wife stopped by and welcomed us. Also, now we have their address for next Monday’s cookout. In case of a major trauma, perhaps one could flee their for safety. Rumor is, Mr. Martin is a very kind and gracious man.


Orientation wrapped up with Mr. Pitts’ most recent interview—the audio of his baby girl who he will not see for two weeks while he graciously invests his time with us. We ferried back to Sweet Peas hostel where WORLD has booked us for the remainder of our time. The ravenous went hunting, the nervous studied grammar, and all checked Facebook.

For more information:

World Journalism Institute