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Medill grabs second-most popular journalism school title

Alissa Zhu/The Daily Northwestern

Photojournalism students discuss assignments on a projector. named Medill the second most popular Journalism school in 2012, just behind the University of Missouri-Columbia.

Lauren Caruba, Assistant Campus Editor

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Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications is the second-most popular journalism school in the country, according to new rankings released this week., a website that compiles information and data on colleges across the country, ranked Medill second out of a list of 100 journalism schools in 2012. Medill’s popularity is second to the program at the University of Missouri-Columbia. Other top-ranked journalism schools include the University of Kansas, Indiana University-Bloomington and New York University.

Founded in 1921, Medill offers both graduate and undergraduate programs in journalism and marketing. The school has produced numerous notable alumni, from ESPN analyst Michael Wilbon to former Illinois State Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka.

“The kinds of courses and the training that people receive in Medill, it’s a great degree, regardless of what you want to be,” Medill Dean Brad Hamm said.

Hamm said Medill’s high popularity comes from its strong programs, both curricular and outside of the classroom. Hamm cited Medill’s Journalism Residency program, which sends undergraduate upperclassmen to professional newsrooms, and Medill on the Hill, an opportunity for students to report in Washington, D.C., as appealing perks for prospective applicants.

“We have the kinds of programs that challenge students and keep them excited,” Hamm said. “We have the ability to go beyond Evanston.”

Aside from curricular programs, Hamm said Medill also connects students with internship opportunities like the Medill Justice Project — formerly the Medill Innocence Project — a program that works to free potential wrongfully convicted murderers, and the investigative journalism initiative Medill Watchdog.

Hamm also said Medill’s situation within a strong academic institution like NU makes school even more attractive to students.

“You look at the experience and you look at the prominent alumni and you hear from people who have been part of the program, and it makes you excited to join that community,” Hamm said.

— Lauren Caruba