Students Inspire 2013 Neal Shine Ethics Lecturer Judy Keen

Judy Keen at podiumJournalism students and faculty nearly filled up CAS Room 147 on Thursday afternoon to hear Judy Keen of USA Today, (within hours of the Spartan's first March Madness victory over Valparaiso).

Keen now covers breaking news, trends and national issues as a Chicago correspondent, after relocating from Washington, D.C., in 2006. She has reported on three presidents and five presidential campaigns for the newspaper.

Since moving to the Midwest, she has continued to cover campaigns and elections, as well as natural disasters and mass shootings. She traveled the entire coast of the Gulf of Mexico after the 2010 BP oil spill, covered the 2011 tornado in Joplin, Mo., and in 2012 traveled across four states to document the effects of the historic drought.

When asked what advice she would give CAS journalism students today, Keen responded, "As we move to an all digital product, I think that there are whole worlds open to us--some of which we haven't even conceived of yet--that will give us new avenues for storytelling, and challenge us."

"My advice for today's students would be to prepare to adapt to the rapidly changing industry, and to build skills on many levels. Being a writer isn't enough now anymore.

"You need to have visual storytelling skills. Be able to shoot video, be able to shoot photographs, to think about interactive online displays.

"The world is really wide open to today's students and we can't even conceive of what new, creative opportunities lie ahead."

Keen wrapped up stating that she was "really inspired by the students I met today, and I saw in them the same passion that I've always had for journalism. And it makes me feel really good that my career will not end with the end of journalism as we know it, but these young people have the same passion for getting the story, getting it right, telling it fairly, and telling it well. And it makes me feel great."

Watch a short interview with Keen recorded during her visit:

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