Journalists will discuss factors affecting the transformation of media at the second annual Schieffer Symposium, “The Changing Communications Landscape,” at 7 p.m. Wednesday in the Student Center Ballroom.Bob Schieffer, who graduated from TCU in 1959 and for whom the school of journalism was named in March 2005, will moderate the panel. Schieffer is currently the interim anchor of the “CBS Evening News” and has been the anchor and moderator of “Face the Nation” since 1991. He is also the chief Washington correspondent for CBS News and has covered every presidential campaign for the network since 1972.
Tommy Thomason, director of the Schieffer School of Journalism, said Schieffer organized the symposium because he wants to bring today’s primary media issues to TCU.
“It’s a labor of love for Bob,” Thomason said.
Panelists include: Jill Abramson, managing editor of The New York Times; Larry Kramer, president of CBS Digital Media and founder of www.marketwatch.com; Judy Woodruff, correspondent for PBS’ The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer; and Len Downie, executive editor of The Washington Post.
John Tisdale, an assistant professor of journalism, said the round-table format of the symposium creates an unguarded, open discussion on issues that are relevant to the journalism business.
“These people don’t come together outside of Washington and New York that often,” Tisdale said. “It’s really a treat for students and faculty.”
William Slater, dean of the College of Communication, said the panel will give students the opportunity to learn what some of the country’s top journalists think about the current state of journalism.
He added that he hopes current journalism students can change the prevailing image of journalism.
Tisdale will present Schieffer with a purple necktie, carrying on a tradition that Tisdale said the department started as a fun way to show Schieffer a small token of appreciation “for what he represents, not only as a journalist, but as a person.”
The last time Schieffer was given a necktie, he wore it during his broadcast the following evening.
Slater said at last year’s symposium, the audience was split between students and community members, but he hopes more students will take advantage of the opportunity this year.
Thomason said in addition to journalism majors, anyone interested in current events and the way media are changing – including political science, sociology, history and radio-TV-film majors – would benefit from the symposium.
Tickets are $15 for the public and are free of charge with a student ID. They must be reserved and can be ordered at 817-257-5976.