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Interesting career change by friend/colleague Jeff White

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Moderator1, Jul 9, 2009.

  1. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    Jeff White, a five-time Virginia sports writer of the year, good friend and former colleague, is leaving the Richmond Times-Dispatch on July 23.
    He's going to U.Va. to serve as staff writer for the school's athletic Web site.

    It is an interesting move and I wonder if it will set a trend. Will more schools go this route? This is a big-time good reporter, one of the hardest workers I've ever known in any business. He knows it won't be quite the same, that there will be an element of PR to it and maybe he won't be as aggressive on some things as he is now. But a lot of it will be the same and the tradeoff for a little security is worthwhile.

    I congratulate him on taking a big step. This was hard on Jeff because he's been a newspaper guy all his life and a damn good one. He's also very bright and sees what is going on around him. He has kids in high school.

    This part right here is 100 percent me talking, just me wondering out loud. Jeff did not tell me this. I do wonder if the T-D's decision not to go to Omaha with the U.Va. baseball team was a factor. In his new job, he'll darn sure go cover one of the biggest stories in state of (and University of) Virginia history. If you can't cover something like that?? Again, that's just me thinking out loud.

    Best to Jeff, a terrific reporter and better person.
  2. JackReacher

    JackReacher Well-Known Member

    Makes sense to me. Sounds like a simple case of... job security > no job security. Smart man.

    Good luck Jeff, and congrats!
  3. PeteyPirate

    PeteyPirate Guest

    Tim Peeler did this a couple of years ago for N.C. State's Web site. (disclaimer: I don't remember if he moved voluntarily or was one of the News & Record's early layoff victims.)
  4. Drip

    Drip Active Member

    Congrats to Jeff but he's not the first guy to leave the biz to work for a school or university. It's been done countless times before and from what I've been told, can be a smooth transition. Yes you become a pitchman for that particular institution, but that's a small price to pay for better hours, decent pay and an opportunity to continue to write and edit.
  5. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    Baylor, a couple of other Texas schools have done this, too? Correct? So, yeah, it does sound like a trend.
  6. mediaguy

    mediaguy Active Member

    I think the University of Cincinnati's website has a staff writer as well. Are there other schools that have staff writers like MLB teams do for their sites?
  7. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    Congrats to Jeff White, who's escaping the ship while it's still at least a little above sea level.
  8. JackReacher

    JackReacher Well-Known Member

    What's the difference between this and what you did, Moddy?
  9. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Sounds like a very smart move to me. University benefits are usually very good, and if his kids get any kind of discount to go to UVa because of his job, even better.
  10. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    I worked in media relations. Jeff will not. We will not call him to iset up an interview with Al Groh. He will write.
    I thought I was going to get to do more writing. They had an in-house newspaper that I thought they were going to expand. Instead, they nuked it. I did some writing for the game program and some event writing but only in "press release" form. I wanted to do more writing.
    Jeff will have nothing to do with sports information/media relations.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 1, 2015
  11. Drip

    Drip Active Member

    Moddy, again it's not a trend. It's been done before. I know of a few who have made the transition from newspapers to schools. However, I will admit that of the four that instantly come to mind, three were primarily in news.
    A few have gone the route you did, went in thinking something different was going to happen. While they were disappointed in the outcome, they weren't disappointed in the pay and working environment.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 1, 2015
  12. PeteyPirate

    PeteyPirate Guest

    "It's not a trend. It's been done before."
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