|English | Español||March 9, 2014 | Issue #67|
The School of Authentic Journalism Empowered Me
Help It to Do the Same for More Independent Journalists in 2012
By Arzu Geybullayeva
Arzu Geybullayeva, Azerbaijani journalist and blogger based in Istanbul, Turkey, attended the 2011 Narco News School of Authentic Journalism as a scholarship recipient. In 2012 she returns as director of its Online Journalism Workgroup. DR 2011 Noah Friedman-Rudovsky.
I was amazed by the diverse and rich background of the scholars participating in the program. They were from all over the world: The Americas, Europe, Africa, you name it. We all had something to share as well. Be it experience, an incredible survival story, knowledge or wisdom.
The style of teaching here makes you question the whole educational system. At least that’s how I felt during my time at the school. The constant interaction between scholars and professors during workshop hours, or lectures or during the time spent outside of work groups symbolized one of the main principles of the school, that we all are here to learn from each other. In fact, these words stuck in my mind from the first day when we all attended the inaugural dinner and introduced ourselves. It was something that the founder of the school, Al Giordano, said in his opening remarks. Hearing those words right there; I knew this was the beginning of a very special and memorable journey to come.
Leaving the school and the city of Mexico on my flight back to Istanbul, I felt empowered. As I sat in my seat, I remembered the questions pacing in my head before coming to the school. I thought of the excitement I had. The School of Authentic Journalism gave me something I would have never got anywhere else. The sheer knowledge of it all would be enough but it wasn’t just that. The reason why I felt empowered was because I knew that these 80 something persons are there for me. Perhaps at times not all of them, but I knew that I have just introduced myself to a world of new, bright and talented organizers, speakers, and professionals. But above all, I knew that they understood me. They accepted me and listened to me as I shared with them stories about my own country, Azerbaijan.
I am now looking forward to returning to the school as a professor to teach the online journalism group where I was a scholar last year. I have so many ideas to share and again the excitement is taking over me. I don’t have questions anymore. I am simply thrilled by the opportunity.
And this is why I need your help! I was the lucky recipient of the J- school scholarship that the school was able to provide thanks to generous people like you, reading this letter now. I am positive that you too, like previous kind supporters of the J-School will make a contribution letting this unforgettable experience touch many others. Help us to give more scholars this life changing opportunity. It is so important that the school continues to survive, bringing together new scholars, and creating endless opportunities for those who care.
Please make a contribution today. You can do it online via The Fund for Authentic Journalism website:
Or you can mail a check to:
The Fund for Authentic Journalism
PO Box 1446
Easthampton, MA 01027 USA
I would like to personally thank everyone for your invaluable support!
- The Fund for Authentic Journalism