Spend either a month improving your storytelling, photography and video skills while living in Urbino, Italy, a beautiful Renaissance town nestled in the hills of central Italy. Then, select the optional two-week extension and take a class in Italian Media & Society or Italian Cinema and pick up another three credits.

Urbino Program: May 26 – June 23, 2017

Optional Two-Week Extension Program: June 23, 2016 – July 7, 2017

The popular 3-credit Urbino Program will continue in 2016, but students have the option of picking an additional 3-credits by staying two more weeks. You can choose to participate only in the 4-week Urbino program, or select both programs. Students who want to participate in the two-week extension must also be part of the four-week program in Urbino. By participating in both the programs, you’ll get to experience more of Italy.

Urbino: 4-Week Program

You’ll join a team of media professionals to create multimedia stories about the people and events within the town Urbino, Italy. Your work will be part of either a website, digital magazine, or promotional video about the town.

Students in the Urbino, Italy program can sign up for either Section 1 Multimedia Journalism or Section 2 Magazine Journalism or Section 3 Promotional Video.

The Urbino Project is about telling stories. This class is your passport to explore a picturesque area of Italy in search of  interesting people and situations that you can feature.

You will be assigned a topic/subject based on your preferences.  You’ll then write, shoot photos and/or produce a video on a person, place or event in the town or area. Although you will work on developing a full range of storytelling techniques, you’ll have the opportunity to focus on a set of skills such as writing, photography or video. Past students have produced multimedia stories on food, wine, parenting, athletics, history, tourism, music, traditions, religion, art, design and dance. During this four-week program, students learn

• how to write for a feature digital publication.
• how to take great digital photos.
• how to shoot and edit quality video.
• the ins and outs of intercultural communication.
• how to work as part of a production team.

Students in all sections will work on skills critical for successful storytelling, including the basics of telling compelling stories with words and images. Students will be coached by a Pulitzer Prize-winning staff in writing and photography as well as online video. They will learn how to navigate as professional journalists and storytellers in a foreign culture by working with interpreters and crafting ready-to-publish features and news stories. Students will also study “survival” Italian and learn about the history and culture of the region. University of Urbino students will work as interpreters for fieldwork.

You’ll work in assigned production teams, using computers, digital cameras and video cameras. Students are required to bring their own laptop computers and digital still cameras. JMU students participate with students from other institutions and are led by JMU professors who coordinates their involvement during the four weeks.

The program occurs in cooperation with The Institute for Education in International Media’s (ieiMedia) Urbino Program. JMU students will get to work with students coming from other universities in the U.S. and around the world.

Piazza della Repubblica in Urbino

Urbino: Two-Week Extension

Students in two-week extension program can sign up for either Section 1 Italian Media & Society or Section 2 Italian Cinema. In contrast to the 4-week program, the two-week course will utilize a more traditional class structure with readings, reflection papers, and discussion. On-site visits and screenings will also be part of the program. While the majority of the courses will take place in the two-week period, students will begin some aspects of the course while still in the four-week program.

Section 1: Italian Media & Society

A look at the history and development of Italian media industries, institutions, ownership and regulation in light of cultural and societal forces.  The course will provide students with an appreciation of how the mass media and culture have interacted with social change and political movements in Italy from the time of unification to the present. Students will better understand Italian society and media through a comparative analysis of Italian television, radio, newspapers, public relations, advertising and new media.  The course will focus on media literacy through on-site visits, guest speakers, videos, readings, discussion and online resources.

Section 2: Italian Cinema

The study of the history and cultural impact of Italian film on Italian culture and on world cinema. Focus on the principle Italian film genres. Emphasis on the contribution of particular films and film directors. The principal objective of this course is to introduce students to Italian cinema, focusing on post World War II cinema, and to the influence of Italian cinema on world cinema.

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