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Penn State Introduces New Fashion Journalism Course

Do you have a passion for fashion?

Penn State’s Bellisario College of Communications is introducing a new course dedicated to all things fashion journalism.

COMM 497: Fashion Reporting will focus on long-form journalism covering topics like fashion and entertainment, beat writing, and the business behind the industry.

Professor Walter Middlebrook created the course to cater to students interested in writing about the fashion business.

“One of the first things I noticed upon my arrival at Penn State was the strong interest among students in fashion and fashion-related industries,” Middlebrook said. “Then, I learned of the various fashion-related clubs and my guess was that there are several schools on campus that are crossing the lines with fashion. These stories need to be discovered and covered.”

Since the course is dedicated to fashion beat writing, students will gain confidence in identifying and executing story ideas. Middlebrook is hoping to challenge students to be better writers and reporters.

Middlebrook — a former feature editor for Newsday, The New York Times, and The Detroit News — says the class is a work in progress.

“We expect to meet and/or bring in a number of experts in this area of coverage. We’ll be studying some elements of business reporting as well,” Middlebrook said. “In other words, this class is going to be all business, and we’ll try to have a little fun in the process.”

COMM 260W is a prerequisite, and a strong preference will be awarded to students who have taken COMM 462. Fashion Reporting satisfies a professional course requirement for journalism majors and minors.

To apply for the class, email Middlebrook with your resume, work samples, transcript, and a statement of interest by 5 p.m. on Friday, March 3.

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About the Author

Ava Brendgord

Ava is a senior from Houston, TX majoring in broadcast journalism. She loves coffee and bagels, traveling, and keeping a healthy balance between watching the news and reality television. Follow her at @avabrendgord on Instagram or email her at [email protected].

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