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INVESTIGATIVE MINI-BOOT CAMP May 18-20, 2012 - University of Kentucky

Two years ago, a young reporter at the Bristol Herald Courier uncovered a system that allowed energy companies in Southwest Virginia to take natural gas with minimal state oversight. He won the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service. Daniel Gilbert learned the necessary computer skills at a Computer-Assisted Reporting Boot Camp of Investigative Reporters and Editors. Gilbert, now at The Wall Street Journal, started the Fund for Rural Computer-Assisted Reporting (R-CAR) at the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues so other rural journalists could get the same kind of database training he received from IRE. Now, with the support of the Ethics & Excellence in Journalism Foundation, IRE and IRJCI are bringing that training to Kentucky, FREE to successful applicants. Click here to download the application.

Who: Twelve R-CAR fellows will be selected for the Mini-Boot Camp on the basis of their applications, a letter explaining the stories they want to do with CAR skills, and clips showing that they are prepared to do such stories. Their lodging and meals for two days will be provided, and they will receive a limited travel subsidy. Training will be conducted by IRE Training Director Jaimi Dowdell, another experienced IRE trainer and IRJCI Director Al Cross.

Where: Room 213, Lucille Caudill Little Library (across from old King Library), University of Kentucky

When, what and how:

  • Friday, May 18, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.: Introduction to Excel spreadsheet software
  • Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Working with Excel ; finding data and documents online; using the web as an investigative tool; introduction to Access software for building your own databases
  • Sunday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.: Working with Access to develop and produce stories; getting data and documents from government agencies; beating them in open-records battles 

Institute for Rural Journalism & Community Issues
School of Journalism and Telecommunications, College of Communications & Information Studies
122 Grehan Building, University of Kentucky, Lexington KY 40506-0042
Phone 859-257-3744 - Fax 859-323-3168

Al Cross, director al.cross@uky.edu