Life after AU by Russ
February 3, 2009, 5:00 pm
Filed under: Russ | Tags: , ,

Some good news about a former Observer staffer… Josh Williams, who the SOC has deemed a “star alumnus” has left his post at the Las Vegas Sun, and has taken up teaching multimedia at UC-Berkeley’s J-School. You may recognize him from the big panda-oriented poster you’ve seen hanging around the SOC lobby.

AU Interactive Journalsim alum and former Observer staffer

AU Interactive Journalsim alum and former Observer staffer (AU SOC)

According to Berkeley’s Web site, Josh will be involved with the News21 project and Knight Digital Media Center (which has some awesome tutorials on Flash, Dreamweaver, Soundslides, etc that were an incredible help to me finishing my year-end project for Johnson last semester.)

News21 is interesting – downright fascinating. It features some impressive work from News 21 fellows, including recent graduates of the several J-schools involved in the project (not American, but Berkeley, Medill, USC’s Annenberg and Columbia.) My favorite is Berkeley’s project on the “American Dream,” which attempted to answer questions about whether “the public opinion surveys and economic data reflecting merely a temporary loss of optimism and confidence or are they pointing to more fundamental changes or re-definitions of the dream?”

A fascinating topic and a site to consider – both for form and substance – while we contemplate ideas that we’ll tackle in themed issues of the Observer this semester.

It’ll be interesting to see what Josh contributes to the project. As some of you may remember from Bootcamp, the Sun is a (relatively) small-circulation print publication, but their online reach is far and well recognized (the 2008 Online News Association general excellence in journalism – medium site winner.) Josh was the new media projects editor at the Las Vegas Sun and operations manager at Greenspun Interactive, the digital arm of the Sun’s parent company.

I had lunch with Josh and several of our beloved faculty members a few months ago, and he was telling us about some fascinating projects the Sun was working on.

I hope to interview Josh at some point in the near future about his involvement with the Observer when he was a student, and just maybe, what we should be thinking about as we go forward trying to improve our site.

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