Carleton University and Panasonic Canada
help upgrade NUR broadcast journalism program
(OTTAWA, May 8, 2006) — Carleton
University and Panasonic Canada Inc. are helping to upgrade
the broadcast journalism program at the National University
of Rwanda in Butare through the donation of television equipment
and laptop computers.
The donations are being made through the
Rwanda Initiative, the partnership between the School of Journalism
and Communication at Carleton University and its counterpart
at the National University of Rwanda. (Full details of the
project at www.RwandaInitiative.ca)
The goal of the Rwanda Initiative is to contribute to good
governance in Rwanda through intensive capacity-building in
the media sector and by supporting a range of activities to
foster the National University of Rwanda’s ability to
better deliver journalism education and media training.
"These donations are going to mean
the world to the Rwandan students whose studies have been
hampered by a lack of equipment. Now we can start seeing their
vision of their community come to life," said Kanina
Holmes, an assistant professor in Carleton’s journalism
program. Holmes arrives in Rwanda tomorrow, along with Robert
Lacroix, a media producer with Carleton’s Instructional
Media Services department. They will teach broadcast journalism
courses and help to integrate the donated equipment into the
teaching program in Butare.
"These equipment donations will allow
us to teach students hands-on television production techniques,
a vital step in seeing Rwandan news and documentaries reach
wider audiences," Holmes said.
Carleton’s contribution to the broadcast
journalism program at the National University of Rwanda is
the latest stage in a journalism teaching partnership formed
in January 2006 with backing from the International Development
Research Centre and the Human Security Program at Foreign
Affairs Canada. Initially, Carleton project leader Prof. Allan
Thompson and three other veteran journalists traveled to Butare
as visiting lecturers. The second phase of the project, launched
in April 2006, with financial backing from Carleton International,
the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the
Canada Fund for Africa, deployed six more Canadian teachers
to Rwanda and established an internship program for Carleton
journalism students at The New Times newspaper in Kigali.
Panasonic Canada donated two new AG-DVC7
Mini-DV PROLINE Camcorders to the Rwanda Initiative project.
Carleton’s School of Journalism and Communication and
the Instructional Media Services department are donating three
Panasonic AJ-D200 television cameras from Carleton’s
journalism program, as well as tripods, microphones and other
related equipment and supplies. Carleton International is
providing two laptops with editing software.
“The Rwanda Initiative and the donation
of this vital television equipment are further evidence of
Carleton’s efforts to reach out to the world,’’
said David Atkinson, Carleton University’s President
and Vice-Chancellor. “Through our exciting work in Rwanda,
Carleton’s international reputation for journalism education
is being translated into action,’’ Atkinson said.
The central aim of the teaching partnership
is to address the shortage of journalism educators in Rwanda
and to build the university’s capacity to teach journalism.
The media sector in Rwanda was devastated by the 1994 genocide.
A great number of professional journalists were either killed
in the genocide or implicated in the slaughter through their
involvement with hate media.
Some of the journalistic output from students
at the National University of Rwanda has been highlighted
on the RwandaInitiative.ca website. In addition, Rwandan journalism
students working alongside instructors from Canada have recently
produced work that has been disseminated by such major Canadian
news organizations as CBC-Radio, Radio-Canada International
and the Ottawa Citizen.
The Rwanda Initiative grew out of Carleton
University’s March 13, 2004 symposium on the Media and
the Rwanda Genocide. This symposium explored both the international
media coverage of the genocide and the role played by domestic
media in Rwanda. The symposium inspired a collection of papers,
the Media and the Rwanda Genocide, which will be published
this year by Pluto Press and Fountain Press.
Carleton University and the National University
of Rwanda are now planning an ambitious new project to conduct
a comprehensive program and curriculum review at the School
of Journalism and Communication in Butare and to embark on
a major capacity-building exercise. We also hope to make a
major investment in the infrastructure at the National University
of Rwanda, to improve the teaching and learning environment
for journalism students. Carleton and the National University
of Rwanda will continue to expand their collaboration through
student and faculty exchanges and joint research projects.
Kanina Holmes joined the
faculty at Carleton University’s School of Journalism
and Communication in 2003 and currently teaches television
and print reporting. During her graduate studies she spent
one year in Tanzania, studying at the University of Dar es
Salaam and conducting environmental field work with rural
women’s groups. In 1996, Kanina spent a year with London-based
Gemini News Service through an International Development Research
Centre internship and spent four months writing feature stories
from Tanzania. Kanina has been a producer and reporter with
CBC-TV, CBC radio and was a national correspondent with Global
Television in Winnipeg. With Global, she travelled to Burundi
to produce a series on war-affected children. Kanina has also
worked as a senior reporter with Reuters, the world’s
largest wire service.
Robert Lacroix has been
a media producer for 25 years with Carleton University’s
Instructional Media Services department. A major part of his
job is training third and fourth-year students in camera operation,
video editing and producing newscasts and current affairs
programs. Robert also edits documentaries produced by graduate
students, a number of whom have had their work aired on major
Canadian networks. Lacroix started his broadcast journalism
career three decades ago at the Mid-Canada Television Network,
CFCL, in Timmins and later worked at CJOH before joining Carleton.
For more information contact:
Prof. Allan Thompson ([email protected])
School of Journalism and Communication
613-520-2600 ext. 7439 (Mobile: 613-799-1791)