Student Delegation Participates in International Journalism Festival in Perugia

From April 21-23, a delegation of students from The Matthew, John Cabot University’s student-led newspaper, participated in the 17th edition of the International Journalism Festival in Perugia, Italy.

The JCU delegation at the International Journalism Festival

The JCU delegation at the International Journalism Festival

This is the second year in a row that The Matthew has attended this journalism event, which first started in 2006.

The IJF is a completely independent organization that welcomes journalists and media professionals from all over the world. Most speakers and attendees hail from the United States, the United Kingdom, and other English-speaking countries. Each year, there are one or two larger-scale panels with high-profile guests like EU politicians and Italian writers and media personalities.

The festival, which lasts five days, featured over 250 sessions and more than 680 speakers. The JCU delegation was comprised of Giulia Leo (President of The Matthew), Ilenia Reale (Editor-in-Chief), Julissa Castro (Head of Editors), Amber Alexander (Editor), and Anna Lucia Scotto Di Clemente (Staff Writer), and JCU Student Activities Coordinator Federica Bocco. The delegation attended the weekend sessions and had the chance to network with hundreds of experienced journalists.

“The 2023 International Journalism Festival was a great opportunity to learn more about the world of journalism and network with professionals,” said Giulia Leo, who is heading to Columbia University for an M.Sc. in Journalism in August. “We attended multiple talks about the most varied topics, from the underreporting and misreporting of queer people to the importance of press freedom and fighting gendered disinformation. Taking part in the festival with my ‘press’ pass allowed me to open up to new stories and points of view.”

The JCU delegation also attended sessions focused on the tools to fight misinformation, strategic lawsuits against public participation, media and politics, curating a strong journalist profile, and more. Students also had the chance to speak with academics who have studied or currently work at the universities where they want to pursue their graduate education. “It was inspiring to meet journalists in my same situation – attempting to work abroad as non-English native speakers – and having success in the industry,” said Ilenia Reale. Ilenia will be starting her master’s in journalism at Goldsmiths College, University of London, in fall 2023.

Members of The Matthew who aren’t graduating this semester already look forward to next year’s edition of the IJF.

“Experiencing a weekend in Perugia listening to and conversing with incredible journalists has left me counting down the months until I can return,” commented English Literature major Amber Alexander. “From immersing ourselves in the sessions o talking with the speakers, the 2023 International Journalism Festival was informative and exhilarating.”

To write for The Matthew or join their board next semester, please write to [email protected].

(Federica Bocco)