Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications celebrates 100 years


Daily file photo by Owen Stidman

Fisk Hall, home to the Medill School of Journalism, at 1845 Sheridan Rd.

Megan Munce, Campus Editor

On Feb. 8, 1921, the Joseph Medill School of Journalism was founded with nine undergraduate students. A century later, the Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications has over 18,000 alumni accounting for more than 40 Pulitzer Prizes and campuses in San Francisco, Evanston, Chicago, Washington, D.C. and Doha, Qatar.

Named after former Chicago Tribune publisher and Chicago Mayor Joseph Medill, the school was originally founded as part of the School of Commerce, a precursor to today’s Kellogg School of Management. On the day of its founding, journalists from across Chicago flocked to Fisk Hall to celebrate. Warren Harding, the president-elect at the time, wired his congratulations.

“The founding of the Medill School of Journalism may even be said to mark the completion of the transition from college to university, since training for every phase of metropolitan existence is now offered (to) the man or woman who comes here for advanced education,” The Daily Northwestern wrote upon Medill’s founding.

Explore The Daily’s original coverage of Medill’s opening:

In 1938, Medill separated into its own school. Sixteen years later, it relocated to Fisk Hall — the same building that hosted its opening celebration. The school got its full name in 2011 after adding the graduate and undergraduate Integrated Marketing Communications programs in 1991 and 2009.

Four days before the school’s opening, The Daily published details of the opening celebration:

University leaders lent their congratulations on the anniversary via pre-recorded videos. University President Morton Schapiro called Medill “one of the brightest jewels in the Northwestern crown.”

“As I look forward to the next 100 years, I think the mission that you have at Medill is even more important going forward than it’s been in the past,” Schapiro said. “Our University needs Medill at the highest level, our nation needs it, and so does the world.”

Provost Kathleen Hagerty applauded Medill for both its “rich history” and its devotion to preparing students for the future.

To celebrate, Medill is holding Centennial-themed events from Feb. 2021 into 2022, including a trivia night and panels on the future of journalism.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @meganmuncie

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