Master of Arts, Communications, University of Wyoming, May 2001
Master’s thesis: The impact of civic journalism on newspaper circulation.
Bachelor’s of Science, Journalism, University of Wyoming, December 1998
Clinical instructor, Missouri School of Journalism; opinion and news editor, Columbia Missourian, August 2005-March 2009
Assistant professor, Missouri School of Journalism; opinion and news editor, Columbia Missourian,
- News Editing lab
- News Editing lecture
- Advanced News Design
- Freshman Interest Group
- Opinion section editor/leader of community conversation initiatives
- Work with community columnists to improve writing
- Work with readers to publish letters, guest commentaries, online comments
- Work with student columnists in developing voice and critical writing techniques
- Design and edit daily opinion page
- Oversaw cross-promotional conversation/transparency effort with KBIA called “The Beat,” where a KBIA reporter would interview Missourian reporters and editors on the stories they were covering.
- Instrumental in bringing citizen journalism from MyMissourian.com to print
- Social media leader
- Guest lectures in Reporting on how to best use social media for news delivery, crowd sourcing, and promotion
- Oversee Missourian’s social media efforts, including multiple Twitter accounts and a Facebook page
- Production for daily website and print product
- Designed numerous handouts and led training sessions to help students navigate the Web site’s content management system and other production-related issues.
- Lead training efforts in how to better harness technological tools for news presentation and delivery
- Lead breaking news efforts online as well as experiment with new ways of providing news through multimedia and interactive media
- Moderate comments online
- Write the weekly Dear Reader column on a regular basis.
- Wrote a weekly column about my experience becoming a father
- Contributing editor for Missourian Stylebook and Design Guide
- Fill-in editor for night news editors, design editor
- In charge of hiring, scheduling and training for Missourian teaching assistants, 2006-2008
- Tested software and helped facilitate transitions between content management systems, including several releases of Falcon Editorial, PlanSystem, and the ColumbiaMissourian.com’s django-based, custom content management system.
- Design and maintain intranet system
- Helped lead transition when printing was outsourced to Jefferson City News-Tribune
- Production editor for weekly features section, Muse
- Production editor for weekly features section, Mini-Mo
- Production editor for weekly news magazine, Weekend Missourian
- Mid-America Press Institute, October 2005
- Society for News Design, August 2006
- Teachnology, a program to improve teaching through technology, presented by ET@MO, 2006
- Missourian weeklong editors retreat, 2007
- Multimedia bootcamp led by Jane Stevens, 2007
- American Copy Editors Society, April 2009
- DoIT courses in XHTML, Dreamweaver and how to create Web pages
- Lynda.com trainings in Dreamweaver, Final Cut Pro, Adobe Illustrator
- Writing Intensive Training Program, MU’s Conley House (2007 and 2009)
Conferences where I was a presenter
- ASNE 2007 conference for high school teachers, design
- ASNE 2009 conference for high school teachers, editorial writing and editing
- 2009 Missouri Urban Journalism Workshop
- 2010 Missouri Urban Journalism Workshop
- ACES 2009 Regional Workshop, opening presentation and social media presentation
- 2009 APME national convention – oversaw team of student journalists covering the event
- 2009 Social Wyo conference hosted by Laramie County Community College (Cheyenne, Wyo.), presentation on using social media for branding, marketing and feedback
Other academic commitments
- Dow Jones Editing Test administrator/advisor
- Walter Williams mentor
- Innovation, research and entrepreneurial Committee
- Guest lectures/discussion leader for Reporting, Advanced Reporting, Photo Editing, Magazine Staff classes
- Social media presentations for Journalism Student Council, Magazine Club
- Designer for National Newspaper Association’s Publisher’s Auxilliary, 2006-present
- Led afternoon workshop for City of Columbia employees on how to use social media tools, October 2009.
Adjunct instructor, the University of Wyoming, Department of Communication and Journalism
- Taught the course “Reporting and Newswriting” during the spring semesters in of 2003 and 2004. Taught both the general lecture section that was required for both journalism and communication majors and the writing lab that was for journalism majors only.
Adjunct instructor, Laramie County Community College, English Department
- Adjunct instructor for remedial English course, fall semester of 2002.
Night editor, Wyoming Tribune-Eagle, Cheyenne, Wyo.
January 2001 to July 2005
- Oversaw team of 6 copy editors/designers while designing and editing the daily newspaper (i.e. traditional copy chief role)
- Wire editor
- Led trainings, wrote performance reviews and designed coaching strategies for each member of the team; also in charge of scheduling
- Regularly wrote opinion columns, editorials and book reviews
- Wrote “Shapin’ Up With Sherlock,” a weekly health column that chronicled my attempts to quit smoking and get in shape before my 30th birthday; also kept a regular blog of failures and successes
- Associated Press Public Service Award for 2005 for Shapin’ Up with Sherlock health and fitness series.
- Second place, best daily headlines, National Newspaper Association contest.
Sports writer/copy editor, Laramie Daily Boomerang, Laramie, Wyo.
May 1995-Aug. 1997; Aug. 1998-Jan. 2001
- Covered high school and collegiate sports for my hometown newspaper
- Wrote game stories, feature stories, columns, compiled statistics
- Copy edited and designed the section
- Helped newsroom transition through two content management systems
- Led the newspaper’s first major redesign in more than 20 years
- Photographed sporting events/darkroom technician
Intern, The Riverton Ranger, Riverton, Wyo.
- Crime reporter responsible for daily police logs
- School board reporter
- Sports reporting
- General assignment features and news stories
- Copy editing
Managing editor, The Branding, the University of Wyoming
August 1998-May 1998
- Responsible for production of daily 4-day-per-week newspaper with a staff of seven assistant editors and a large pool of reporters, photographers and copy editors/designers
- Prepared monthly reports for publishing board
- Established newspaper’s first editorial board
- Moderated annual debate for student body president
My teaching philosophy can best be summarized in two words: direct engagement.
Ever since my first teaching opportunity, I've found that a direct, interpersonal approach to students will help them succeed. The trick is finding the best approach for each student and figuring out how much time to devote to each one.
I take this approach in the classroom, during review sessions, and especially in the newsroom. The more involved, the more engaged the student, the easier it is for he or she to ask intelligent questions and absorb the material.
My first teaching opportunity came as an undergraduate at the University of Wyoming. I was a teaching assistant in the photo lab, where I would show students in the photo class how to process film and make black and white prints. At the end of the week, the TA's would meet with our professor to critique and grade the students' work. We would then type up the critiques to give back to the students.
I began noticing that some of the students in my lab were making the same mistakes over and over – usually it was something that was easy to fix with a little more darkroom care, like spotty or muddy prints. I would point this out on the critique, but each week the same problems were there.
It didn't take a genius to figure out that either they weren't reading the critiques, or they didn't really understand how to fix the problem. So instead of waiting for the students to ask me for help when it was my turn to watch the lab, I sought them out. A little hands-on instruction helped them learn how to print photos better and improve their overall grades.
The Missouri Method was a big selling point for me when I applied for my position at the Missouri School of Journalism. In terms of direct engagement, the only thing better than learning by doing is learning by doing it on a one-on-one basis. It also meant I got to combine my two professional loves, teaching and journalism, on a full-time basis.
The Missouri Method is relatively simple to apply in the newsroom. Reporters learn by reporting, editors learn by editing, designers learn by designing. We do this across multiple platforms, which requires my colleagues and I to be as up to date on the latest technology and delivery methods as possible. It also requires us to be accessible, knowledgeable of the community and committed to the success of our students.
Direct engagement is also my primary strategy in the classroom. I don't lecture, I lead conversations. In-class assignments encourage collaboration and idea exchange. Homework assignments that are not for publication mirror those assignments that are meant for publication, but the student is left to make the decisions.
My general goals as a teacher are to see our students graduate with these skills:
- Critical thinking: The ability to investigate, ask tough questions and connect the dots has been at the heart of journalism's finest moments. If our students are to learn to report the news fairly and accurately, they must be able to disseminate information logically and thoughtfully.
- Strong work ethic: Journalism is not for the lazy. It requires commitment and effort to gather and deliver the news. It also requires a certain nimbleness, an ability to find a way to get the news out when unpleasant surprises, like a technological failure, crop up.
- Technologically unafraid: Fact is, you don't have to be a programming genius to be a tech-savvy journalist. As digital delivery evolves, it will only get easier to push content to our readers. Journalists don't need to invent the mechanism, just use it to its full ability.
- Prepared to enter the work force: The Missouri School of Journalism has an outstanding reputation for how well our graduates are prepared when they accept their first job or internship. This means our graduates are well-versed in their particular emphasis area, confident enough to do the work, and mature enough to succeed in a professional environment.
In conclusion, the most important aspect of the direct engagement philosophy is leadership. I ask a lot of our students, but I also offer a lot back as well. I strive to be a newsroom leader by modeling a professional, ambitious demeanor that accentuates the positives and coaches the negatives.
— Jake Sherlock