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Release date: April 10, 2001
Contact: Nancy Seideman, Director, 404-727-0640, or

Emory’s Journalism Program Hosts Visiting South African Reporter

Khathu Mamaila, an award-winning political journalist from South Africa, is serving as a visiting lecturer in Emory College’s journalism program, helping students prepare for internships with Cape Town media outlets this summer.

Mamaila, a senior political writer with The Star in Johannesburg, also worked for The Sowetan newspaper and the City Press news agency. The Sowetan named him 1997 Journalist of the Year, and he also has been honored by the Rhodes University Journalism School and the Independent Newspapers Journalism School. Mamaila is a graduate of the University of South Africa.

Mamaila is visiting Emory as an International Fellow of the Freedom Forum Foundation, based in Arlington, Va. The Freedom Forum is a nonpartisan, international foundation dedicated to free press, free speech and free spirit for all people. The foundation focuses on four main priorities: the Newseum, the interactive museum of news, also in Arlington; First Amendment issues; newsroom diversity; and world press freedom.

“This is the fourth year that the Freedom Forum has sponsored a South African journalist-in-residence at Emory. We are fortunate to have the Freedom Forum’s continuous support,” says Sheila Tefft, director of Emory’s journalism program. “Interacting with a journalist of Khathu Mamaila’s stature is a wonderful way for students to prepare for their internships. Mr. Mamaila will play an important role in shaping their perceptions of this fascinating country and defining their experience there this summer.”

For the fourth year in a row, Emory journalism students will have the opportunity for hands-on, life-changing experience with media outlets in Cape Town, South Africa, and visits to Johannesburg and Kruger National Park. The students are taking a course this semester to prepare for their summer assignments, including hearing from various South African speakers and related experts. For example, students recently met with an AIDS researcher at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and will discuss U.S.-southern Africa relations with Gordon Streeb, former U.S. ambassador to Zambia and current head of The Carter Center’s Peace Program.

The Emory journalism program currently consists of 60 students who either co-major or minor in journalism studies and pursue degrees in fields such as economics, business, the sciences, international studies and religion. In addition, students take courses in reporting and writing, communications law and media ethics in anticipation of advancing their skills in professional internships.

Throughout the year, students are placed in internships in print and broadcast outlets throughout the United States. The South Africa internship program is among the specialized elective courses available to journalism students.

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