ONA, Poynter Build Leadership Academy for Women

Two high-profile journalism organizations are working together to offer a free academy designed to teach women the skills needed to be leaders in digital media.

Two leading journalism organizations are working to improve the prospects for women in the digital media and technology fields.

The Online News Association, a professional organization for digital journalists, is teaming with the nonprofit Poynter Institute to teach more than two dozen female journalists how to get ahead in the field.

The ONA-Poynter Leadership Academy for Women in Digital Media, taking place in April 2015, is an intensive four-and-a-half day course that will teach attendees about newsroom elements that go beyond hitting the publish button—the business of journalism, newsroom culture, leadership style, and entrepreneurship. The program will also include one-on-one coaching for attendees, who will be chosen based on “potential, need and diversity across ethnicity, age, geography, technology platforms, and skill sets.”

In a statement, ONA Executive Director Jane McDonnell noted that the program is meant to build upon a budding trend in digital journalism.

“You don’t have to look far to see the impassioned conversations around women advancing in digital media culture,” McDonnell said. “We want to strengthen the pipeline and encourage open, candid discussion and networking, so women walk away with not only strong skills, but a built-in support system.”

Poynter President Tim Franklin added that the program aims “to increase the opportunities for women and to grow their numbers in leadership positions.”

The two groups are currently seeking seed funding from tech and journalism companies, along with foundations and educational institutions, to keep the program free for participants.


Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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