Center for Cooperative Media launches ‘NJ College News Commons’

The goal is to support New Jersey campus media and student journalists

The Center for Cooperative Media’s mission is to grow and strengthen local journalism for the benefit of New Jersey residents. We are a grant-funded program based at the School of Communication and Media at Montclair State University.

Our flagship project is the NJ News Commons, which is a network of more than 260 media outlets and freelance journalists across the state, including hyperlocal digital publishers, public media, nonprofits, television, radio and newspaper organizations. Members of the NJ News Commons work together on collaborative projects, share content, network and generally support one another.

Now, we’re excited to announce the launch of the NJ College News Commons, a network of student journalists, advisors, publishers and media organizations that is modeled after the NJ News Commons. Members of the NJCNC have all agreed to communicate and work together in order to improve the quality and sustainability of student journalism in the Garden State.

The role of the Center for Cooperative Media when it comes to the NJCNC will be to help connect, grow and strengthen campus and student media outlets at New Jersey colleges and universities. We think collaborating with other campus media organizations and individuals will not only help students do better work, but it will also help prepare them for many of the challenges they will undoubtedly face in the world of professional journalism, where collaboration is increasingly becoming a non-negotiable aspect of reporting.

We plan to do this by hosting events and trainings, maintaining and facilitating communications channels between NJCNC partners and organizations, and providing general support to journalism and media students (and faculty) at any New Jersey college or university. Click here to learn more about the NJ College News Commons.

The idea for the NJCNC was born out of a series of conversations between Center staff and Tara George, professor of local journalism at Montclair State University. So far, we’ve been able to recruit several campus media organizations from a handful of NJ colleges and universities, including:

  • Montclair State University
  • Rutgers University
  • New Jersey Institute of Technology
  • The College of New Jersey
  • Fairleigh Dickinson University
  • Rowan University
  • New Jersey City University

One of the big goals we hope to achieve within the first year of the NJ College News Commons is a collaborative reporting project between various campus media partners across the state. We plan to host a brainstorming event later this fall, where we’ll ask all of our members to attend and offer their suggestions on which topic(s) we should cover, which tools we should use, and what the the final product should look like.

We are also planning a regular newsletter that highlights some of the journalism being done at student publications across our state.

And we’re still recruiting student publications to join the NJ College News Commons! Click here or use the form below to become a member.

If you want more information about how you or your organization can get involved or support the NJ College News Commons, please send me an email at

In the meantime, make sure to subscribe to our daily email newsletter or follow the Center for Cooperative Media on Twitter for relevant updates and other information about the project.

Joe Amditis is the associate director of the Center for Cooperative Media. You can reach him on Twitter at @jsamditis or via email at

About the Center for Cooperative Media: The Center is a grant-funded program of the School of Communication and Media at Montclair State University. The Center is supported with funding from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, Democracy Fund and the Abrams Foundation. Its mission is to grow and strengthen local journalism, and in doing so serve New Jersey residents. For more information, visit

EDIT: I completely forgot to credit Tara George in the original version of this story. She was one of the main people who came up with the idea in the first place.



An initiative of the School of Communication at Montclair State University

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