Reporting on and Living in Times of Trauma

This two-day conversation, open to all members of the Lehigh community, encourages people to reflect on the impact of everyday trauma and pain in a punishing moment.

Beset by intersecting pandemics — the novel coronavirus, white supremacist terrorism, wage slavery, a planet in crisis — to be alive in 2021 is to confront unavoidable and compounding trauma. For journalists, it is our vocation to bear witness to these horrors. For the marginalized, aggressions come from all directions. Our hope is to offer space for a reflective pause, in which trauma is confronted with supportive, honest, and open conversation.

The week’s programming will be broken into two moderated panels. The first day focuses on experiencing trauma in and through the workplace, bringing together journalists and experts on dealing with witnessing and experiencing pain as part of one’s job description. The second day focuses on lived experience, in which panelists will wrestle with media ecosystems and the impact of trauma on day-to-day life.

In acknowledgment of Provost Urban and Faculty Senate’s encouragement to foreground mental health and wellness at the midpoint of the semester, Reporting on and Living in Times of Trauma will be held on ZOOM Tuesday, March 23 and Wednesday, March 24, from 4:30 PM until 6:00 PM.

Reporting on Times of Trauma
March 23, 2021 from 4:30-6:00 p.m.
Journalists can experience vicarious trauma when reporting on disturbing events. Hear from award-winning journalists about how stressors on the job can impact mental health, and learn some approaches journalists can use to care for themselves.
Register here:
Jim MacMillan, Founder and Director of the Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting
Cassie Owens, Staff Reporter at The Philadelphia Inquirer
Elana Newman, McFarlin Professor of Psychology at the University of Tulsa and the Research Director for the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma

Living in Times of Trauma
Watching the news today involves witnessing mediated trauma that has an impact on day-to-day life, particularly for Black Americans. Learn from experts about how media depictions of violence against Black Americans affect us all, about how implicit biases and stereotyping work, and what you can do to foster mental health while engaging with these challenging issues.
Register here:
Danielle Kilgo, John & Elizabeth Bates Cowles Professor of Journalism, Diversity and Equality at the University of Minnesota
Kareem Johnson, Associate Professor of Instruction in Psychology at Temple University
Stephanie Shiffler, Postdoctoral Resident at Lehigh University’s Counseling and Psychological Services


Department of Journalism and Communication |  Coppee Hall  |  33 Coppee Drive  |  Bethlehem, PA 18015  |  phone 610-758-4180  |  fax 610-758-6198