One Down: Emory University to End Journalism Program

-By Warner Todd Huston

As more and more newspapers turn off their printing presses for good and more journalists are fired or laid off, expect to see more universities and colleges following Emory University’s lead by closing down journalism programs.

Claiming that the shuttering was, “designed to enhance areas of distinction, transform areas of excellence into areas of eminence, and allocate resources to invest in important new and emerging growth areas,” Emory abruptly announced the pending program changes last Friday.

Of course, some J-students are none too happy about the announcement and several got together to pen a complaint letter.

“This is an unwise decision,” they carped. “The Journalism Program, since it was created in 1996, has consistently produced some of nation’s most respected journalists and citizens of the world, who continue to bring great honor to Emory University.”

But the problem is that graduates are finding a tougher career path in journalism now more than ever and that path is getting narrower every year. And with newspaper ad revenues fallen to the lowest levels since the 1950s, one would think that there simply is no need to graduate thousands of journalism students every year especially when some of the most up and coming writers are being born on the Internet from folks with no such education — nor a need for one.

Further, the jobs opening on the Internet for journalists and writers are far less lucrative than the old days of newspaper and magazine journalism. So, while it is true that new jobs are being created on the Internet for journalists it just isn’t the same career that journalism schools are programed to educate students to undertake.

Finally, as our system of higher education gets closer and closer to the expected burst of the education bubble, we’ll see more programs being reassessed then eliminated to “enhance areas of distinction” in fields that are better suited to America’s economic future.
“The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it.”
–Samuel Johnson

Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer. He has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and before that he wrote articles on U.S. history for several small American magazines. His political columns are featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart’s,, and, as well as,,,,, among many, many others. Mr. Huston is also endlessly amused that one of his articles formed the basis of an article in Germany’s Der Spiegel Magazine in 2008.

For a full bio, please CLICK HERE.

Copyright Publius Forum 2001