The Catholic Archdiocese of Monrovia has launched a youth media program to identify potential secondary school students to be introduced to career in journalism. The Archdiocese operates an FM radio station, Radio VERITAS in Monrovia.
Speaking at the launch over the weekend at the St. Kizito Parish in Paynesville, outskirt of Monrovia, Rev. Father Ambrose DayougaKroma said the Catholic Media Center has recognized the urgency and importance of establishing a youth media education program.
“This program, which we intend to go all across the country, is intended to identify potential students, who are interested in journalism in our school system to have them begin their practice from their campus based media clubs activities and liaising with Radio VERITAS to plan and produce programs that have direct impact on our human conditions such as the environment; the economy; starting small business, agriculture, health, gender, issues relating to women and children; the vulnerable and elderly within our communities,” he explained.
Rev. Kroma called on the Ministry of Education, as a matter of urgency, to introduce media studies within the national school curriculum beginning from 7th to 12th grade. According to him, the idea behind teaching media studies in secondary schools is not solely to making students become journalists or media persons as is the case with other subjects being taught.
However, he noted that if students are exposed to many subjects, in the future they may pick these professions, adding they study all these subjects to understand their surroundings and to develop an nderstanding of the concepts, which may help them to deal with various situations in life.
The Catholic priest said media studies should also be taught along with other subjects as it is an important aspect of students’ lives. “Media is not only a source of entertainment for young people as is sometime erroneously portrayed, but also a source of education. Students knowingly or unknowingly learn a lot from the continuous flow of media messages in their lives. Hence a media discourse is necessary at our schools. For this, media can be introduced as a subject in all schools across the country,” he emphasized.
Meanwhile, Deputy Education Minister for Administration, Aaron Weah, who also attended the launch, has promised that the suggestion from the Catholic Church will be taken to the ministry for possible consideration in the next revision of the national curriculum.
The program was characterized by intellectual debate among students from the Catholic School System and other private and public schools in and around Monrovia. By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor – Editing by Jonathan Browne