news Thursday, July 16, 2015 - 05:30
For all the flak that journalists have lately been receiving on social media, one would think that journalism was getting out of vogue. But the reality seems to be very much in the contrary, at least as far as journalism courses go. Most universities in the country now have journalism and mass media courses, so do individual colleges and there is also a long list of independent institutions that offer the course exclusively. In the last four to five years, a trend has emerged with media organizations getting into the "media education" business. Although most of the courses offered by the media-run schools are diplomas or certificate courses, they are often rigorous and industry-oriented. Subjects taught at these "M-schools" range from photo-journalism to lectures by academics and senior journalists, often from within the organization. The quality of these courses may be debatable as in most instances there is no set standardization on independent quality monitoring –But there are of course, perks*. (Conditions Apply: Placement is not guaranteed) Although running a media institute has largely been the domain of the national media, the regional language media too has caught up with this trend. The perception is that students would have easy access to media houses where they hope to get jobs. A look at the media organisation running the college would indeed ignite hopes in a student, as they would look forward to working with the organisation concerned in the future. A word of caution though, comes from Shashidhar Nanjundaiah, Dean at the India Today Media Institute. “The problem lies in the illusion that they would all be getting jobs with the India Today Group,” he says, adding that the prospect of a future at the media organisation rested on other factors like vacancies as well. “We may end up taking as many as 25 students, or as less as 10 students,” mentions Nanjundaiah. The total number of students coming through the college every year is 80. Nanjundaiah also mentions that a degree from the institute is not UGC-approved and the students that look to join are mostly “placement driven”. “The advantage we provide is the most sophisticated equipment and the fact that the student is already in the ‘system’ and has been building his network.” He adds though, that there is no “unfair” advantage given to these students when it comes to selection into the India Today Group.   Here is a list of the journalism schools, which are run by media organisations: Times School of Journalism: The institute is owned by India’s largest media house, Bennet Coleman and Company, which also owns the country’s largest selling English newspaper, The Times of India. It offers a one year post-graduate diploma course at fee of Rs 2.7 lakhs. This may be one of the earliest media schools set up by a media house.The Times Centre for Media Studies was set up in 1990 in Delhi (renamed as Times Centre for Media and Management Studies in 2010). It offered a journalism programme under the brand name Times School of Journalism (which was made into a separate company in 2010).    India Today Media Institute: Run by the India Today group runs a magazine, a television news channel of the same name and the Hindi channel Aaj Tak, among others enterprises. The college offers three media-related courses.    Express Institute of Media Studies: Run by The Indian Express newspaper, the institute offers a one-year journalism programme for Rs 2 lakh.    iTV School of Media and Management: The college is run by the iTV Network, an organisation that runs The SundayGuardian newspaper and the English news channel NewsX.   Calcutta Media Institute: The institute which offers a multitude of courses is a wholly owned by a subsidiary of the Anand Bazaar Patrika Pvt Ltd, which owns ABP News and The Telegraph newspaper.    Sakaal International Learning Centre: The Pune-based Sakaal Times runs this journalism school from the same city.    Sakshi School of Journalism: The school is run by the Telugu Jagati publications, the chairperson of which is YS Bharathi, wife of YS Jaganmohan Reddy, who is the president of the YSR Congress. The Sakshi media group runs Telugu news channel Sakshi TV and a daily newspaper.    Eenadu Journalism School: The EJS is run by the vast Telugu conglomerate, the Eenadu group, which has its fingers in every pie from print to multimedia. Eenadu is now owned by Reliance Industries Limited.    Manorama School of Journalism: Known as MASCOM, the college is owned by the Kerala-based media house Malayala Manorama.   MBL Media School: The school is run by the Madhyamam group, which runs a Malayalam newspaper by the same name, and Malayalam TV news channel  Media One.   International School of Media and Entertainment Studies: The institute is run by the BAG network, owns Hindi TV news channel News24.    NDTV media institute: The college is run by the New Delhi Television Network and offers a 10-month programme in broadcast journalism. Now that you know that the biggest and most well-known media houses in the country run their own media schools here’s something to ponder. Some of the most well-known and widely respected journalists in the country today are not journalists by educational qualification. Across India, some of the best stories have been done by rural reporters, which are later picked up by the regional or national media, thus getting country-wide attention. In recent years, the news organizations have shown a preference for hiring people with a degree or diploma in journalism, but that wasn’t the case some decades ago. At least, the regional media are far more diverse in this regard. What journalism schools essentially do is allow people to build networks – a crucial part of any job.