Final Assignment: Community Profile & Portfolio

Part 1

The point of this exercise is to prepare a simple profile of an organization or person — a common story in any news medium — and take it one step further, whether with mapping, multimedia or more.

Provided your work is up to standards, it will appear in “”, a hyperlocal website launching this fall.


Youth Activists

Ask each activist the following questions. You should also prepare some sort of multimedia presentation, whether an audio slideshow or video. Take at least one “mug shot” of the activist.


Questions for Youth Activists




Name of organization you are involved with:

How long have you been involved with the organization?

Why did you decide to become involved with this org/movement?

Do you have any personal ties with the work you do?

Describe the type of work you do?

Is your family supportive of the work you do?

What do you hope to accomplish in the near future?

What do you hope to accomplish in the long run with the org?

Do you have other priorities or jobs besides this one? Student? Full-time work?

How much of a commitment is this?

What do you plan on doing later on in life, will this serve as experience?

What is the role that the community plays in all of this?

What would you say is the role that young people play in community activism?


Young Activists to profile:

Daniel Santana, South Central Farms, 310-594-2098,

Albert Tlatoa, also in the farm movement and heading up a lot of community efforts in the area, 323-641-8809.

Jahrell Thomas, Senior Youth Advocate, CRCD 213-743-6193

Juan Aquino,

Jorge Nuno,

Ben Torres,



Ask each clinic the following questions. Also, prepare a map to show where this clinic is, and a photo of the clinic. You may prepare additional multimedia (slideshow, video) if you wish.


To ask:

Name of clinic/provider:


How long been in area?

Translation services?

Insurance accepted:

Type of insurance:

Federally qualified?

Preventative services:

Emergency Services:

Mental Health Services:

What is your organization’s goal?

What do you see as lacking in this area? What healthcare is needed?

What is the largest health issue facing the residents of Vernon Central?

How are you helping to combat it?


To profile:


Central Neighborhood Medical Group

2707 South Central Avenue

Los Angeles, CA 90011


Clinica Para Las Mujeres

231 West Vernon Avenue # 203

Los Angeles, CA 90037-2779

(323) 232-9700


Kedren Community Health Center

4211 Avalon Boulevard

Los Angeles, CA 90011


H Claude Hudson Comprehensive

2829 South Grand Avenue

Los Angeles, CA 90007


Clinica Medica San Miguel

115 East Washington Boulevard

Los Angeles, CA 90015-3606

(213) 741-0400


South Central Family Health

4000 South Main Street

Los Angeles, CA 90037-1022

(323) 232-2673


Hubert Humphrey Comprehensive Health Center‎

5850 South Main Street

Los Angeles, CA 90003-1215

(323) 846-4312


UMMA Community Clinic

711 W Florence Ave



St. John’s Well Child and Family Center

5701 S. Hoover Street



Part 2

I will judge your final project not in isolation, but in he context of your entire Web site. Therefore, you must make sure your portfolio is up-to-date and comprehensive, and presents you in the best possible light.

Here are the criteria I will use to evaluate your portfolio

  • How well is your site structured?
  • Can I find all your assignments easily?
  • Is your bio up to date and professional?
  • Did you upload a photo of yourself? Is it a professional shot?
  • Did you incorporate any past work from other classes (or independent projects that you undertook on your own) into your portfolio?
  • Did you incorporate any past print stories or broadcast stories?
  • A portfolio is meant to be a representative collection of your best work – I’d like to see more than the projects for this class. You don’t need to do any additional reporting or production work, if you have old print stories, copy and paste them into the site. If you have old broadcast pieces, upload them to youtube and embed them on the site. Perhaps create a “print”, “broadcast”, and “online” section, so an interviewer can easily see that you’re proficient in all three areas. Figure out what structure works best for your work and how you want to present yourself to recruiters and interviewers. At the end of the day, a portfolio site should reflect you and how you want to showcase yourself and your work.

Due dates:

  • You will present your final project and your portfolio in class on Dec 2.
  • Based on the critique, you may make revisions if you wish. Revisions are due Dec 9.

ONA 2010 Award Winners

Check out the list of winners.

Crowdsourcing Assignment

This is a look at how easy – and complex – it is to crowdsource and organize data. You’ll be divided into two teams:



We are working within this area:

Your assignment:

Every person needs to go to three different food outlets. These can be produce trucks, mini-marts, bodegas, pharmacies (thinks CVS’ with food) and markets.
The rules:

1.     They cannot be Fresh and Easy market or the large Latino market on Central.

2.     One must be from outside of the pre-determined area, but NOT by USC.

3.     Everyone on your team must go to different places.

Once your there, do the following things:

1.     Take a photo of the store

2.     Take a photo and note the prices of the following things

  • One pound of bananas
  • A gallon of whole milk
  • A loaf of white bread.

3.     For the milk and bread, note the brand.

4.     Take notes on the appearance of the food. For example. “Only three bananas, all over ripe. All bread was smashed. Plenty of milk, but grimy on the outside.

5.     Write down the address of where you are. If there is no address, not the cross streets. Something that we can put on a map. If the place is mobile, ask them when they are usually in that area.

Once you visited three food outlets and gathered in the information:

1.     Add your data to this spreadsheet:

2.     Upload your photos to picasa, flickr, or your blog and add a link to the photos into the spreadsheet.

Due date: Midnight November 10

ONA exercise: You be the judge!

For this assignment, you will assume the role of a judge at the Online News Association awards. You will be assigned a specific category to review. You will use a scorecard to review each site in your category, and you will write a final recommendation in which you choose a winner and justify your choice.  You will publish your review, recommendation, and rationale on your blog. Don’t just tell me who you selected – tell me why you made your choice. Use the criteria in the scorecard to justify your choice. I will judge your review based on variety (are you taking a variety of factors into account, from the quality of journalism to design to community engagement, etc.) and on specificity (are you using specific examples to back up your decision).

Due date: Midnight 10/27

Keep a printout of the scorecard for each site. I will collect them in class at a later date.

How to make your audio slideshows better

Colin Mulvany, multimedia producer at The Spokesman-Review has some great tips.

Using iMovie to create your slideshow

Here are simple video instructions for making an audio slideshow using iMovie.

You will use iMovie in order to create your final slideshow for this assignment. Match your visual and audio style to the other About Town slideshows. This will make it easier for a Multimedia Producer to consider your work for publication.

Deadline: Post your finished audio slideshow to your blog (as a youtube or vimeo embed) by midnight Wednesday Nov 3.

Photo Warm-up Exercise (Due midnight Oct 20)

(Adapted from an assignment designed by Mindy McAdams’ for her course on multimedia reporting)

In the first week of the assignment, you will shoot photos to practice. These photos will not be used at all in your slideshow – these are purely practice shots. (This assignment is designed to help you identify problems in your photo technique so you can improve on them.)

IMPORTANT: Before you shoot, please make sure the settings on your camera are for a high resolution. Check your camera’s manual if you don’t know how to check or set this. (If you have lost your manual, it is probably available online from the manufacturer. Just Google the brand name and model number to find it.)

Choose a story that has some visual interest: An event, a crowd, a demonstration, people working or playing, etc. Not a speech. Not a press conference.

Shoot at least 30 photos at one time, on one day, for ONE STORY. Several photos can be of the same thing, but change your position, the angle, etc.

– The photos must focus on at least three very different things — for example, at an arts festival: one subject might be an artist in her booth, selling her work; a second subject might be the crowd attending the arts festival, or perhaps one family enjoying themselves there; a third subject might be the work of a different artist, if it has visual interest (for example, intricate silver jewelry).
– You can have about 10 shots of each single subject, but be sure to get different angles and different distances (super-close, close and medium are best) of each subject, so the 10 shots do not look exactly the same.
– Make sure there are PEOPLE (at least one person) in each photo. Even if you shoot objects, there should be a person’s hand or face also.
– Work hard to follow the rules of COMPOSITION (If you need a refresher course on composition, check out these examples – the photos are dated but the principles of basic photographic composition are well explained)

Number of photos:
Minimum of 30

Due: Midnight Wednesday, October 20th

Submitting the assignment:
–    You will use a photo sharing service in order to submit this assignment. You have a choice between Flickr, Picasa, or – use the one that appeals to you. It may be advantageous to you to keep your photos for this class and for any journalism assignments separate from your personal photos, that’s up to you.
–    You will upload the 30 or more photos from your camera to the photo sharing Web site. If you are using Flickr, you might want to consider using a program like “Flickr Uploadr” which allows you to upload dozens of photos in one easy step. It allows you to compress photos while uploading. I highly recommend that you compress your photos as you upload them to Flickr, or you may run out of space if you’re using the free account. No matter what you use, keep the uncompressed photos saved on your desktop or on a Flash storage medium. Flickr Uploadr is available for Mac and PC and can be downloaded here:
–    Add a link to your photos to your blog. If you are using Flickr, you might want to add the “Flickr Widget” to your WordPress blog and have the photos for this assignment show up in the sidebar to your blog. The photos you took for this assignment should now show up in the sidebar of your blog. If you have trouble adding the widget to your blog, simply publish a link to your Flickr/Picasa/ account on your blog. You’re done.