Your connection to industry & member news
Your connection to industry & member news
Your connection to industry & member news  |  Sept. 28, 2023
David Ferrara's SCPA Foundation summer internship landed him a full-time job at The Post and Courier Greenville. 

Clemson grad lands reporting job after SCPA Foundation internship

By Hank Lunn, SCPA Marketing Intern
Recent Clemson graduate David Ferrara spent his summer as an SCPA Foundation intern at The Post and Courier Greenville covering topics ranging from public safety and courts to breaking news.
“The most beneficial experience was entering into a new market and approaching a new perspective of reporting,” Ferrara said.
He said that he worked closely with Eric Connor, reporter and local editor.
“David is a rising star, and we’re so lucky you sent him our way,” Connor said.
Ferrara said that he experienced covering niche topics as well as larger stories that extended throughout the state.
“I leveraged the experience I had covering the Clemson beat to help the beat reporter here with additional coverage and also covered some bigger stories, like the Supreme Court affirmative action ruling,” Ferrara said. “That piece required me to work not only with the Greenville newsroom, but all of The Post and Courier’s staff across the state to pull in feeds from several universities.”
Ferrara graduated from Clemson in May after studying economics and philosophy.
Originally from Connecticut, he served as editor-in-chief of The Tiger and formerly interned at The (Seneca) Journal.
His internship ended with a job offer from The Post and Courier Greenville, where he now works as a full-time reporter covering public safety, courts and breaking news in the Upstate.
“I’m happy to be working here and excited for what’s to come,” Ferrara said. “Where I am now would not have been possible without the SCPA Foundation’s internship. I am thankful for their support of me as I begin my career.”

Invest in the future of our industry

The Foundation's internships and scholarships are provided by contributions from you! Please support the Foundation's valuable work by making your tax-deductible contribution today.

How to apply

Internships are open to student journalists who attend a four-year college in South Carolina or reside in South Carolina and attend a four-year college elsewhere. Rising juniors and seniors, and recent college graduates are eligible. Applications for Summer 2024 are now available. The deadline to apply is Dec. 8.

Celebrate National Newspaper Week Oct. 1-7

National Newspaper Week starts Sunday! In addition to the ad below, SCPA President Richard Whiting will have a column available later this week. Additional  print and digital ads, columns and editorial cartoons are available on the National Newspaper Week site for download at no charge.
Download this National Newspaper Week house ad as a quarter page (5.25×10.5") ad and resize as needed. The ad is available in color or black-and-white. If you’d like the InDesign package to localize or resize, just let us know. The data included is derived from the recent South Carolina study conducted by Coda Ventures. More detailed data will be available to SCPA members soon.

SCPA can run SLED checks on your local candidates

A reminder that SCPA is able to run SLED criminal background checks on candidates for local elections.
To obtain a SLED check, you must provide the candidate's full name and date of birth.
Please call our office during business hours at (803) 750-9561 to request a SLED check.
SCPA is able to run SLED checks for all news stories, including crime/public safety reporting. 
We had a great turnout at last Thursday's Education Beat Reporting Roundtable. It was a  productive meeting collaborating and talking about education and open government issues with reporters from daily and weekly newspapers across the state. Be on the lookout for information about upcoming roundtables on local government beat reporting, cops and courts, and revenue/advertising. 

FOIA Briefs

Editorial: Don’t lock public out of discussion about superintendent’s performance

For a board elected by an organization that claims to prioritize transparency, and chaired by a member who has said repeatedly she doesn’t want closed-door sessions except when South Carolina law requires it, the Charleston County School Board sure is keeping the public — and even some of its members — out of a lot of the public’s business.
If we believe what little board members have said about the recent last-minute, closed-door meeting about their new superintendent, it was not in fact cooked up by the five Moms for Liberty-backed board members behind the backs of the four other board members; one of the Moms candidates, Carlotte Bailey, said even she didn’t know about it in advance.
Also contrary to the criticisms of the four members who routinely end up in the minority, there was nothing inappropriate about discussing the superintendent’s performance after only two months; his contract appropriately requires a minimum of an annual evaluation but allows additional evaluations “at any time the Board deems necessary.”
More significantly, though, both the explanation from Chairwoman Pam McKinney and a rebuttal from Board Member Daron Lee Calhoun II suggest that the board had no business holding its discussion about Superintendent Eric Gallien’s performance behind closed doors.
From The Post and Courier | Read more
Related: Frustration, confusion follow chaotic CCSD board meeting (By Maura Turcotte, The Post and Courier)

How transparent are local, state governments?

Orangeburg officials keep records of government activity mostly updated on the city’s website, a review of records shows.
But open-government advocates say there are transparency concerns surrounding some aspects of state politics.
Through South Carolina’s Freedom of Information Act, citizens can attend open meetings and acquire records from public bodies.
FOIA defines a public body as any “agency supported in whole or in part by public funds.” The most recognizable entities include school boards, councils and commissions.
“Too often, people do not know what is required of FOIA,” South Carolina Press Association Attorney Taylor Smith IV said.
According to Wright, “Orangeburg has done very well with adhering to FOIA and trying to be transparent.”
But that is not always the case in South Carolina.
How can the state be more transparent?
By Tyuanna Williams, News Intern, The Times and Democrat | Read more

People & Papers


The Post and Courier’s P.J. Browning named Executive of the Year by international media group

The Inter American Press Association announced that P.J. Browning, president and publisher of The Post and Courier, has been honored as its Executive of the Year.
IAPA, based in Miami, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to defending and promoting freedom of the press and expression in the Americas. It comprises more than 1,300 publications.
Browning was recognized for her “exceptional contribution to the sustainability of journalism and strengthening its mission as a watchdog of public integrity,” according to a letter from Michael Greenspon, IAPA president, and Leonor Mulero, president of the Awards Committee.
The award jury commended Browning “for engaging the community through donations to her newsroom, enabling her to support the investigative team in uncovering corruption. The gifts, which exceed $1 million, also support the state’s education system through solutions journalism supported by the newspaper’s Education Lab and the collaborative journalism project with other media outlets in the state, which it supports financially to make requests for access to public information.”
From The Post and Courier | Read more
Sammy Fretwell of The State led a section this week for the University of South Carolina School of Journalism and Mass Communication's Environmental Journalism Fellows. Fretwell, a USC graduate, has covered the environment beat for The State since 1995. 


By Benjy Hamm,
Director, Institute for Rural Journalism

Americans depend on newspapers to stay informed about their communities

Editor's Note: This column is part of the National Newspaper Week package provided by the Newspaper Managers Association. It is available for reprint in your newspaper and online.
Nearly 220 million American adults turn to their local newspapers regularly for news and information they need to stay informed, feel more connected to their neighbors and improve their lives and communities. 
That readership number is based on a recent national study by independent research firm Coda Ventures for the America’s Newspapers organization. 
Most likely, the number of readers is higher. Many people who say they receive news on their phone or from social media instead of newspapers fail to understand that the sources for those stories are often journalists at U.S. newspapers. 
We sometimes take the work of journalists for granted, but those who work at newspapers are filling an important role in the health of our communities and country.
Everyone, even nonreaders, benefits from the work of journalists. News coverage has led to improvements in food safety, decreases in traffic and plane fatalities, better care for veterans and nursing home patients, support for victims of natural disasters, and exposure of all sorts of wrongdoing. 
I have long loved this quotation by Frank Batten Sr., a media visionary and former chairman of Landmark Communications, who said about journalists and newspapers: “Our calling was never more important. We have the capacity to inform, to enlighten, to awaken and to inspire. We have the opportunity to enrich the lives of thousands of people every day.”
Across the United States, journalists and other newspaper employees are serving their communities and democracy every day by informing, enlightening, awakening and inspiring millions of readers. Read more

Upcoming Events

Thanks to funding from the SCPA Foundation, "Earn Your Press Pass" a self-paced online community journalism training course is now available to SCPA members at no charge. Sign up to start learning!
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