Reynolds School Professor Vanessa Vancour and a team of more than 60 students over two semesters have launched Noticiero Móvil, the RSJ's first bilingual multimedia news program.
Noticiero Móvil provides Spanish and English news stories based in northern Nevada. The team is dedicated to working with the Latino community to provide fair, accessible, and relevant content about our diverse community. The initiative also sponsors local events and dialogues to involve and engage with our community on current issues. Approximately 400,000 people live in Washoe County per the 2014 Census projections, 25 percent of which are Hispanic.
Noticiero Móvil attracted 16 students for the inaugural reporting team in the fall of 2015, 10 of whom were bilingual. Noticiero Móvil prides itself in inclusiveness and teaches students, Spanish speaking or not, how to communicate across differences. All RSJ students are welcome to enroll in the class. Additionally, the initiative has created partnerships with the Reno Gazette-Journal, KNPB, Univision, KUNR, Capital Public Radio and KXNV.
Students enrolled in Vancour's classes were challenged to cover live news such as presidential candidate visits to Reno/Sparks and develop ethnographic pieces on local Latino leaders. As part of the fall 2015 social journalism course, students developed social media strategies for Noticiero Móvil and ran successful live news events. They planned, organized and hosted a Democratic debate watch party at a Mexican restaurant, and a "Dance for Democracy -mock caucus" at a Latin nightclub. These events were created to test live events as a way to engage the Latino community with structured conversations on the political process leading up to the November elections. Students also participated in the Fiesta on Wells Hispanic culture event, and organized a free barbeque on campus to help gain exposure for the initiative.
University of Nevada, Reno officials are also supporting the work Noticiero Móvil is doing. For example, the University's Office of the Provost has assigned the RSJ a new tenure-track faculty position for an assistant professor of Spanish-language media. This professor would develop coursework in bilingual journalism to support Spanish-language journalism initiatives, as well as serve the broader RSJ and University curricula. This investment from the University signifies a long-term impact on the School.
Noticiero Móvil is a direct result of the $35,000 Online News Association Challenge Fund for Innovation in Journalism Education grant the Reynolds School received in April 2015. The RSJ was one of just 11 programs nationwide to receive this grant. Noticiero Móvil evolved out of the Nevada Media Alliance to develop multimedia news coverage ahead of the 2016 presidential election, serving the Latino community of northern Nevada. The goal of the project is to transcend mere translation of stories produced in English, emphasizing stories and angles of particular impact to the Latino community. This is the first time the Reynolds School has received an ONA grant.