What you need to know:
- The journalists were part of the ninth cohort of the graduate trainees for the Media Lab (ML) programme.
The Nation Media Group (NMG) yesterday unveiled 17 new reporters as it continues with its digital transformation journey.
The ninth cohort of graduate trainees under NMG’s Media Lab programme graduated after five months of hands-on and rigorous training in digital, print and broadcast journalism.
They took their master classes at the Aga Khan University Graduate School of Media and Communications (GSMC) in Parklands, Nairobi.
Speaking during the event at the new Aga Khan University Centre, NMG chief executive officer Stephen Gitagama asked the graduates to be resilient as they speak truth to power.
“Get your facts right, work diligently and don’t be under pressure to complete your assignment. Most people don’t like the truth being told but if your facts are right, then you will be honoured and respected,” he said.
Editorial Director Mutuma Mathiu told the graduates from Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania to continue learning and innovating to remain relevant in the fast-changing media landscape.
“A bad journalist is one who is not informed. You must strive to stay tech-savvy and continue in the digital journalism path to get the best out of your career,” he said.
NMG Human Resources Director Jane Muiruri asked the scribes to pursue excellence.
“It has been a five-month journey and now the zeal, hard work and passion you put into your work is what will set you apart.”
The chief guest of the event, former CNN anchor and correspondent Zain Verjee, challenged the graduates to be persistent, believe in themselves and develop the habit of lifelong learning.
“Always challenge yourself and never take a no for an answer. Persistence and belief in myself are some of the things that made me who I am today. I also learnt that the most important person in the world is the storyteller. That person is you,” she said.
GSMC Media Lab Programme Training Lead Nancy Booker said the graduates were set for their careers: “We’re presenting to you passionate truth seekers and storytellers.”
GSMC Dean Lawrence Pintak urged the graduates to remain professional as they navigate the industry while facing an onslaught of misinformation and disinformation.
“Your job is to figure out what information is accurate and true. Get out there and ask questions and put what you have learnt to good work,” Prof Pintak said.
GSMC Vice-Provost Alex Awiti challenged the cohort to be the new generation of journalists with a keen interest in science reporting, especially on climate change and health issues.
“It’s unfortunate that politics has always got ahead of science, but be it as it may, go out and tell the truth as well as pursue the facts. The kind of questions you ask is what you will be judged on,” Prof Awiti said.