Giving Compass' Take:

• Zenobia Jeffries Warfield explains how Story Bridge aims to increase diversity in news reporting and documentary filmmaking across race, class, and gender lines. 

• How can funders ensure that there is appropriate diversity in their programs? What are the consequences of failing to fund diverse groups? 

• Learn how to create diverse talent pipelines for nonprofits

As part of a collaborative social justice reporting project three years ago, a group of journalism students set out for Selma, Alabama, to cover sociopolitical issues there, 50 years after Bloody Sunday, a pinnacle in the civil rights movement.

The 12 students, six from Morgan State University, a Historically Black College and University in Baltimore, and six from West Virginia University, a predominantly White institution in rural Morgantown, were partnered across schools as workmates and roommates.

They participated in an experimental classroom known as Story Bridge, launched in 2015 to help future journalists see issues through different lenses.

The Bridging Selma assignment took a notable turn for one of the teams when the Morgan State student interviewed mostly Black people, while her WVU partner, the photographer shooting accompanying video, captured only White people.

Neither had deliberately left out people from the other race, but both had simply covered what felt natural to them, Jones said.

Hence the purpose of Story Bridge.

Funded by the Knight Foundation, the project seeks to explore benefits of emerging technology for crossing racial, class, and gender divides in news reporting and documentary filmmaking.

Read the full article about increasing diversity in news reporting by Zenobia Jeffries Warfield at YES! Magazine.