Mexican Journalist Named Director of Digital Media Center in Guadalajara Rector General Also Introduces New Advisory Council

Mar 82011
  • Advisory Council members include Luis Manuel Botello, senior program director of special projects at ICFJ, third from left; and James Breiner, former Knight International Journalism Fellow who founded the center, second from right.

The University of Guadalajara has named Mexican journalist Rosalía Orozco to be the director of the school’s Digital Journalism Center launched by Knight International Journalism Fellow James Breiner in 2008. The university’s rector general, Marco Antonio Cortes Guardado, announced the appointment March 7 and introduced the Center’s new advisory council.

“The University of Guadalajara and the Digital Journalism Center are proud to have Prof. Orozco as the new director,” he said. “We are committed to maintaining the excellent work Mr. Breiner did as a Knight Fellow.” The new Council will be “the soul of the Center for Digital Journalism,” he said, adding that the quality, stature and prestige of council members bring confidence that the Center will move forward. The board is responsible for determining training strategies for the Center, as well as courses to be offered.

The appointments mark a new phase for the Center, which is now fully supported by the university. Under Orozco’s leadership, the university plans to offer a master’s degree in digital journalism, based on a curriculum designed by Breiner. She has already redesigned the website and plans to expand course offerings to include management of social networks, digital tools for investigative journalism and crisis management for professional communicators.

“The Center has played a key role in Mexico and Latin America because it has helped hundreds of journalists to understand that social and cultural changes have transformed journalism,” said Orozco. “In addition, it has trained them in the use of multimedia technologies so they can improve the quality of journalism in their regions."

Since its inception, the Digital Journalism Center has offered online courses to 430 reporters and media managers in 22 countries. Among the courses the Center will offer this year: "How to Write for the Web," "Managing a Digital Newsroom," and "New Financial Models for Digital Journalism." Orozco plans to further expand coverage and build courses targeting Hispanic media in the United States.

The new advisory council members are Manuel Moreno Castañeda, rector of the Virtual University that houses the Center; Luis Miguel González, editor of El Economista newspaper in Mexico; Sandra Crucianelli, an internationally known expert in digital journalism from Argentina; Juan Carlos Núñez Bustillos, journalism professor and ombudsman for the newspaper Público; María Elena Hernández, professor of public communication at the University; Luis Manuel Botello, senior program director of special projects at the International Center for Journalists; and Breiner, a digital journalism consultant and trainer.