Media Alumni Seeking to Highlight Equity and Diversity

MASTHEAD is a mission-driven alumni group focused on promoting a more inclusive environment for student journalists of color at the University of Alabama. Newsrooms across America continue to lag in diversity compared to the broader U.S. population, but at Alabama we believe there is an opportunity to work creatively alongside students to close this gap and open up more opportunities for everyone to have a voice.

MASTHEAD has successfully launched a mentorship program pairing more than a dozen student journalists of color with media professionals of color working in newspapers, magazines, film, and public relations. We are in the process of funding staff salaries for a new race and identity desk at the University of Alabama’s student newspaper The Crimson White. In the future MASTHEAD will fund campus events organized by student media leaders, help pay the printing expenses of student publications, and send students to professional development events such as the National Association of Black Journalists annual conference. One day we hope to offer scholarships to aspiring journalists of color.

In a larger sense, we want to foster an environment where students feel empowered to transform the media organizations they operate on campus, as well as build new ones. A key function of the free press is challenging the status quo, and that challenge must be brought to the media institutions we work for as well as the broader world that we cover.



MASTHEAD aims to raise an initial $10,000 to fund the race and identity desk at The Crimson White and travel opportunities to attend journalism and entrepreneurship conferences for student editors at Nineteen Fifty-Six. Both organizations have additional initiatives that fit into MASTHEAD’s mission that we will help with as funding allows.