The U.S. Embassy Jakarta has invited Bruce Thorson, associate professor of journalism, to teach in Indonesia for two weeks in March. He will train students and early career journalists in photojournalism and multimedia, and how to develop sources, fact check and improve storytelling skills.
The invitation came from John Y. Choi, public diplomacy officer with the U.S. Embassy Jakarta through the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of International Information Program (IIP). The State Department works directly with U.S. embassies, consulates and missions to connect people with foreign audiences.
Thorson worked with Choi in the summer of 2014 while on an in-depth reporting project in Indonesia with students from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln College of Journalism and Mass Communications. Students work on international documentary projects twice a year and the work is posted to the college’s multimedia website, Global Eyewitness.
Thorson will participate in a program on “Environmental Journalism: Covering the Environment.” Choi asked Thorson to create a workshop module similar to what the Nebraska students learn to do saying, “We think a workshop comparing the Keystone and fracking debates in the U.S. will find parallels among journalists here who are inexperienced with long-term investigative journalism techniques.”
Thorson has traveled to South Africa, Kosovo, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Ethiopia, India, Brazil, the Dominican Republic, Indonesia and Ecuador with Nebraska students through a photojournalism endowment by photographers Howard Buffett, Joel Sartore and Thomas Mangelsen.
Thorson teaches basic digital photojournalism, advanced digital photojournalism and the Global Eyewitness photojournalism projects. Prior to that, Thorson spent 25 years as a newspaper photographer and photo editor – mostly in Oregon – and as director of photography at the St. Paul (Minnesota) Pioneer Press. An award-winning photographer, Thorson has received recognition from the Associated Press, The Best of the West competition and the National Press Photographers Association. His photographs have also appeared in Sports Illustrated, People Magazine, USA Today, Oregon Business, Nebraska Life and various other publications.