In an earlier blog in SCOOP, we learned that nearly 1 in 3 newsroom jobs have been eliminated since the number of journalists peaked at 56,900 in 1989, according to an annual survey by the American Society of News Editors.
At the end of 2010, only 41,600 scribes were left on the industry’s payrolls", states Alan D. Mutter in his "Reflections of a Newsosaur".
At the same time, the largest number of journalism students ever will be graduating next year from J-schools across the country, according to a NY Times article of 2009.Stop the Presses! Revamped Journalism Courses Attract Students..http://chronicle.com/article/Stop-the-Presses-Revamped/48497/.
According to Katherine Mangan of the Chronicle of Higher Education: "At a time when the newspaper industry is in free fall and thousands of jobs are being cut each year, one would think that the halls of the nation's journalism schools would be awfully quiet. Think again.
Many universities report that journalism enrollments are up this year. Over the past few weeks, a lot of these budding journalists have been blogging, broadcasting, and tweeting their way through introductory courses that have been revamped to embrace the digital age."
Enrollment in undergraduate journalism programs nationwide has grown 35 percent over the past 10 years, to 201,477, and was up slightly in 2008, the most recent year for which data are available.
Being flexible is important during tough times. A report released last month found that in 2008, graduates of journalism and mass-communication programs had far fewer job interviews and offers than in 2007, and that full-time employment was at its lowest point since at least 1986.
Part of the draw for students still flocking to journalism schools is a new generation of courses retooled for new media. The same rapidly changing technology that is creating headaches for many media executives appeals to a generation of students who grew up playing computer games and texting and now tweeting their friends on the microblog Twitter. "These students are also very comfortable multitasking, and they like the allure of doing different things every day," says Ms. Hines, who is director of Howard University's graduate program in mass communication and media studies.
Undaunted, another writer Lynn O'Shaughnessy of U.S.News and World Report, noted in December 2011: "Despite the gloom, I think this is a grand time to be getting started in journalism because the Internet has made the field far more egalitarian today. You can become an expert on anything. You can share your opinions and what you know across the globe thanks to blogs, YouTube, Facebook, and a ton of other platforms.