NAM Reception on Education
Policy and Reporting
By Ras H. Siddiqui
Glimpses of the function organized
by the New America Media
The New America Media,
the country’s premiere collaborator of ethnic media
organizations, and the UC Sacramento Public Affairs Journalism
Program held a special reception on education policy and reporting
in Sacramento, California on February 27, 2007.
The event also included an opportunity of introductions for
eight new recipients of fellowships in educational reporting
who were here to attend a seminar in California ’s Capital
So what does Gabriel Martinez, a reporter for La Prensa in
San Bernadino have in common with Hassina Leelaratha of The
Independent Monitor/Sri Lanka Express?
And if we add to these two Gail Berkley of the Sun Reporter
of San Francisco, Charles Ding of the Sing Tao Daily (LA),
Robert Carlos Duran from El Bohemio News, Taesoo Jeong of
The Korea Times, Gopal Kumarappan of Thendral Magazine a Tamil
language publication from the Bay Area and Raymond Beltran
also of La Prensa in San Diego, one can gather that NAM in
many of its incorporated cultures remains well represented
in this group of fellows.
This mosaic of identities had specifically two areas in mind
here, namely reporting and education. And in talking with
individuals in this group at this event, one could gather
that they took both of these aspects seriously and remained
passionate about them.
NAM is an organization whose consumer base has a potential
of reaching 51 million people in the United States. The number
could be higher worldwide because this writer’s own
past work (for the Pakistan Link) published on the NAM website
has generated responses from as far away as South Asia and
the United Kingdom. A recent piece of writing was spotted
by some magazine editors in Karachi, Pakistan. Journalism
remains a powerful medium and as NAM targets important local,
state and national issues of universal importance such as
education and health care, it will continue to be heard.
NAM continues to link the ethnic media with the mainstream.
It’s Media Relations Director, Pha Lo, recently co-wrote
an absorbing, in-depth report about her community for the
Sacramento Bee in a collaborative effort with well-known report
writer Steve Magagnini. Carolyn Ji Jong Goossen, NAM”s
Education Projects Director ,wrote an interesting article
(also re-published in Pakistan Link) titled “High School
Bullies Target English Learners” offering a unique perspective
on the immigrant experience amongst school kids. And these
are just two examples of how NAM is making an impact.
Representation from the mainstream education-related academic,
political, and media outlets certainly gave this reception
a higher profile. One can hope that this program along with
other such collaborative efforts will continue to grow in
what is certainly becoming a New America.
(NAM’s ethnic media fellowship program for education
issues is made possible by The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation).