The photojournalism option teaches students to produce non-fiction visual reporting that tells the stories of people, social issues and events for diverse and modern media outlets including digital and print. Students learn to create and publish both still photographic reporting as well as moving and interactive media that document our diverse culture, evoking both the momentous and the everyday circumstances of contemporary life and society. The photojournalism option allows flexibility and individual specialization where students can find their primary interest. Students take required courses in photojournalism fundamentals, picture editing, and multimedia, including sound, video gathering, and video editing. This option is part of the Photographic and Imaging Arts BFA program.
Students then may choose to take extra courses in an area in which they want further specialization, including picture editing, still photojournalism field-work, or multimedia storytelling. Students contribute to the creation of special publications centered on community activity and awareness, and provide staff support to RIT’s student-run magazine, The Reporter. Students also have the opportunity to travel to Washington, D.C., and New York to meet with potential employers that represent the wide spectrum where photojournalists currently work.
Career Opportunities in Photojournalism
Photojournalism graduates go on to work for some of today’s leading digital publications, newspapers, and magazines. They're also recognized for their outstanding work. Eleven alums have won a combined 15 Pulitzer Prizes for their work in visual journalism.
A significant number of graduates also become self-employed freelance photographers, who seek freelance assignments with news organizations, picture agencies, non-profits, stock photo agencies, and as editorial photographers. Many graduates also are employed as picture editors, website producers, content curators, and television or multimedia editors.
National Press Photographers Association
Photojournalism students are the driving force in the school's National Press Photographers Associate (NPPA) student chapter. Students regularly attend activities sponsored by the NPPA, including regional and national conferences. The chapter manages a yearly contest of student work that is judged by alumni who also share their experiences in photojournalism and review student portfolios. The chapters also hosts guest speakers. The RIT student chapter was awarded the nation’s top chapter by the NPPA in 2016.
The College of Art and Design is RIT’s intersection of technology, the arts and design — where creativity and innovation are boundless.
What’s different about an RIT education? It’s the career experience you gain by completing cooperative education and internships with top companies in every single industry. You’ll earn more than a degree. You’ll gain real-world career experience that sets you apart.
Co-ops and internships take your knowledge and turn it into know-how. Co-op in the College of Art and Design provides hands-on experience that enables you to apply your artistic capabilities in dynamic professional settings while you make valuable connections between classwork and real-world applications.
Photojournalism Internships: Students apply for photojournalism internships with some of the nation’s most respected newspapers, websites, and magazines as both photographers and editors. They work collaboratively on a variety of stories and have the opportunity to learn from photographers, editors, and other professionals in the newsroom. Students receive assistance from their professors, as well as from the Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education, in identifying and applying for internships. Internships provide real-world work experience, which is an invaluable part of students’ educational experience.
Creative Industry Day
RIT’s Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education hosts Creative Industry Day, which connects students majoring in art, design, film and animation, photography, and select computing majors with companies, organizations, creative agencies, design firms, and more. You'll be able to network with company representatives and interview directly for open co-op and permanent employment positions.
The RIT Photojournalism capstone experience is a year-long experience where seniors research, develop and execute an in-depth story. Main photo by Eakin Howard '21.
Matthew Breitbart '10, Tom Rieger '74 and Don Williams '82 are core members of the Federal Agencies Digital Guidelines Initiative, which provides uniform methods that drive the digitization efforts of federal agencies, libraries, archives, museums and institutions around the world.
Rebecca Soderholm ’94 (photojournalism) is documenting the excitement of off-road dirt bike and ATV races through photography in a body of work titled “Hare Scramble.” Her vision for “Hare Scramble” earned Soderholm a spot as one of the 2022 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellows.