Classes partner to launch environmental podcast depth report

Sunday, December 12, 2021 - 7:45am

Two classes in the College of Journalism and Mass Communications teamed up during the fall of 2021 to launch an environmental podcast series. Journalism 491 Environmental Depth Reporting and Broadcasting 491 Environmental Depth Reporting media production brought together students interested in writing and producing multimedia stories to work on the semester-long project with Bill Kelly, senior producer at Nebraska Public Media.

Students spent the semester learning about Nebraska landfills including visits to the G&P Landfill in Milford. Using their experiences, the students created a five-episode podcast, “State of Waste” and a series of digital stories. The first two episodes, “Waste of space,” and “Digital debris,” are available on Spotify and Apple Podcasts. The podcasts and digital stories are also available on the Nebraska News Service.

Assistant Professor Jessica Walsh and Assistant Professor of Practice Kaci Richter taught the combined classes. Kelly volunteered his time every Wednesday to advise students working on the series. In the spring, students will work with Kelly to edit their podcasts to Nebraska Public Media standards in the hope they will air on the station in the future.

The College of Journalism and Mass Communications Depth Reporting program focuses on producing professional-quality depth reports on topics of social importance. Previous projects include Wounds of Whiteclay, the 2017 winner of the Robert F. Kenney Journalism Grand Prize, that explored the devastating effects of alcohol sales in Whiteclay, Nebraska, to residents of the nearby Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

students conduct interview
Students in the Environmental Depth Reporting course interview the landfill operator at G&P Landfill in Milford, Nebraska, in September 2021.