The Virginia Center for New Media Citizenship is a long-term project governed through an equal partnership between WUVA, Inc. (“WUVA”) and the Department of Media Studies. The project has four major goals. They are, first, to preserve and foster student journalism at the University and at universities broadly; second, to help improve editorial processes as legacy press institutions disappear and new digital media emerge; third, to focus systematic scholarship, from a wide range of disciplines, on how citizens and leaders can better navigate new media to enhance democratic processes and encourage informed participation in government at all levels; and fourth, to explore fundamental changes in foundational notions of free expression. This fourth goal aims to sustain and expand Jefferson’s rationale for the marketplace of ideas globally in the digital age.
The project’s expansion into visual media greatly enhances internships that WUVA furnishes to Media Studies majors under a formal memorandum of understanding that Media Studies and WUVA entered in 2000. Media Studies and WUVA will form an advisory board to help guide the project and promote participation by other Arts & Sciences departments, faculty from all the University’s schools, other student media organizations (specifically the Cavalier Daily), and alumni.