Som Sattana aspired to study journalism in his home country of Cambodia as a child, but under Communist rule was forced to grow rice instead.
Now, at age 34, he is one of 15 international fellows selected by the Freedom Forum to study in the United States as part of the Department of Communications Masters Program in Journalism workshop. The department received $7,200 from the Freedom Forum to host Sattanas visit for the spring term.
Freedom of the press has been denied journalists for most of my life. I wanted to study in the United States to learn how journalists here are able to practice true freedom of the press, Sattana says.
A professional reporter for the past eight years, Sattana says that coming to the University has increased his knowledge of some journalism basics. He receives the same assignments as beginning students in the masters program, including deadline reporting, information gathering and an introduction to various writing styles used by American reporters.
In mid-June he will travel to Washington, D.C., to participate in another fellowship program, working for Time magazine.
It has been exciting having Som with us and serving as a host campus for this new program because it matches the mission of the International Institute and the communication department, says Jonathan Friendly, director of the Masters Program in Journalism. It also helps us to understand international journalism and prepares our students for careers abroad.
The Department of Communication is working with the International Institute to organize additional Freedom Forum visits.