CoJMC professor serves as election reporting trainer for Fiji journalists

CoJMC professor serves as election reporting trainer for Fiji journalists

Tuesday, September 11, 2018 - 12:45pm
Gary Kebbel headshot
Kebbel, a journalism professor who teaches global news, mobile and social media, is a member of the U.S. State Department Speaker Program on Reporting on Elections.

by Molly Chapple

CoJMC Professor Gary Kebbel will serve as a virtual trainer and moderator for journalists in Fiji who are reporting on an upcoming general election in October.

Kebbel, a journalism professor who teaches global news, mobile and social media, is a member of the U.S. State Department Speaker Program on Reporting on Elections. As a member, he is asked to assist in global reporting initiatives requested by U.S. embassies around the world.

For the next three weeks, Kebbel will moderate virtual conversations with reporters and editors from Fiji. The virtual training will focus on the Fiji journalists’ reporting needs and challenges and how they can address them.

Kebbel said it’s his goal to help them learn how to effectively cover and inform people about their election issues. He will urge journalists to use social media in their coverage. This will serve as an outlet to connect with readers.

“I will first ask them which (social media) channels politicians are using,” he said. “Then, I will make sure they are using those channels effectively.”

The program is a way for the U.S. State Department to extend U.S. influence in a positive way that is beneficial for other countries, he said.

Kebbel has served as a trainer in several similar projects. As a Fulbright Senior Specialist and State Department trainer, he has taught about online news for the U.S. State Department in South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Russia, Taiwan, Tunisia and Latvia. He also has been a trainer at the U.S. Foreign Service Institute and has consulted on social networking for NORAD and for the U.S. Department of Defense.