‘Women, Power and Media:’ New online course on newsroom leadership offered by Knight Center and Chicas Poderosas. Sign up now!

The Knight Center and Chicas Poderosas are teaming up for a free massive online course in Spanish on leadership for women in media and journalism.

The six-week course, “Women, Power and Media: A Leadership Course for Journalists” (Mujer, Poder y Medios: un curso de liderazgo para periodistas), runs from June 22 to Aug. 2, 2020. Registration is open now!

“Many times we women journalists focus on training for ourselves in tools to tell stories or investigate, which are extremely important, but we rarely dedicate that time and effort to thinking and strengthening our leadership as women in the media,” said Chicas Poderosas executive director and founder, Mariana Santos. “That is why Women, Power and Media is important, because it is a course that specifically addresses the question of leadership for women who work in the media, to think about how, in these spaces, we can grow and become leaders.”

“We approach leadership from a female perspective, thinking together about how women and non-binary people can find our own ways of being leaders without reproducing masculine stereotypes,” she added.


“We are proud to partner with Chicas Poderosas to offer this unique leadership course in Spanish to women in the media. The Knight Center has been working for years in the area of inclusiveness and gender equity, offering several training opportunities for women journalists,” said professor Rosental Calmon Alves, founder and director of the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas at the University of Texas at Austin.

“One of the most recent online courses in Spanish offered by the Knight Center, in partnership with Google News initiative, was ‘Inclusive coverage: gender perspective in the newsroom.’ And we also have a tradition of collaborating with the International Women’s Media Foundation,” Alves added.

The online course “Women, Power and Media: A Leadership Course for Journalists,” offered now by the Knight Center, is part of an extensive program of Chicas Poderosas, which is supported by Google News Initiative, Sida and Meeda.

This course is open to women journalists who want to strengthen or incorporate leadership tools in their work, as well as learn best practices from other women leaders. It is meant for those with experience in journalism and media and those who are just getting started.

“The course is aimed at all those women who want to think and improve their leadership or who are already doing it and want to know more,” said Lu Ortiz, academic coordinator for the course. “It is aimed at young professionals who are starting their careers, expert professionals who want a change in their professional career, those who want to be encouraged to have a greater public presence, or simply all those who want to understand or explore leadership in a fundamentally feminine way.”

The course is divided into six weekly modules, each taught by two instructors.

  • In week one, participants will reflect on themselves, their own journey and values.
  • For week two, students will design their path and analyze themselves as leaders.
  • Week three focuses on effective communication, including utilizing assertiveness, empathy and the acceptance of change.
  • In week four, participants will learn how to collaborate using their skills as reporters and their emotional intelligence.
  • Week five is about planning and achieving sustainability so that good journalism is possible.
  • For week six, students will learn from colleagues who have failed and learned from their mistakes.

The course will feature 15 instructors from Latin America, Spain, Portugal and France who work in journalism, media, law and political science. They are Mariana Barbosa, Portuguese journalist; Lucía Chuquillanqui, gender policy specialist from Peru; Mar Cabra, Spanish journalist; Luz Mely ReyesVenezuelan journalist; Marianne Díaz, Venezuelan lawyer; Arianna de Souza, Venezuelan writer; Michaela Cancela-Kieffer, French editor; Carmen Alcázar, Mexican internet freedom advocate; Nelly Luna, Peruvian media entrepreneur; Emiliana García, Argentine media manager; Lía Valero, Colombian journalist; Laura Aguirre, Salvadoran media director; Ximena Villagrán, Guatemalan data journalist; Ana Arriagada, Chilean media entrepreneur and academic; Jani Dueñas, Chilean actress and comedian; and Lu Ortiz, Mexican political scientist.

“Each one of the trainers that we call on to collaborate in this course is an expert in her field, as well as an obligatory reference for women journalists in the region. They are our role models, the people who motivate and inspire us,” Ortiz said. “Each one of them from their context and with her life history shares her lessons and knowledge in a generous and clear way. Taking the Women, Power and Media course, in addition to being formative, is a journey through the newsrooms, enterprises, histories and the political and social reality of Latin America. Each accent, each location, and each idea will transport – the people who take the course – to a different corner of the planet's richest, most diverse, resilient and innovative media ecosystem.”

The course instructors are also familiar with the unique challenges faced by women working in media and journalism in the region.

“On the one hand, [there is] the precariousness of working conditions that affect all people who work in the media, and the gender inequality that persists in newsrooms, which results in coverage without a gender perspective, incomplete media agendas and machista management models,” Santos said.

“Achieving equality in terms of rights is still a struggle in the region. For example, in some countries in the region the wage gap is still huge...and greater than the world average, which is already high,” Aguirre pointed out. “But in addition, we also face risks because we are women. Latin America is the region with the most risks to the integrity of women. Not only because of the high rate of femicides, but also because of the daily discrimination we face. Women journalists specifically have to deal with situations of harassment, sexual assault and other expressions of violence on a daily basis.”

The course consists of video classes, testimonials and conversations; readings and exercises; participation in discussion forums; and quizzes covering course material.

Students who successfully complete course requirements have the option of paying an administrative fee of U.S. $30 to receive a certificate of completion in PDF format. The Knight Center will evaluate the cases of students who need a waiver of that fee. No formal college credit is associated with the certificate.

Like all Knight Center MOOCs, the course is asynchronous, meaning participants can take it in the days and times that best suit them. However, there are recommended weekly deadlines to complete activities so as not to fall behind.

“We recommend that you take note of all the courses. Write down the emails of your coaches who will be mentors and guides of your future leadership processes, and don't take anything literally,” said Gía Castello, program manager at Chicas Poderosas. “A good leader knows how to adapt the advice to her own realities and the nature of her team.”

Register now for this free online course and take the journey to growing in your position as a leader in your newsroom.

About Chicas Poderosas

Chicas Poderosas is a global community that ignites change by inspiring and developing women in media and creating opportunities for all voices to be heard. Since its creation, Chicas Poderosas' objective has been to promote female leadership and gender equality in the media. To address the gender gap in the media, Chicas Poderosas offers professional training to provide women and dissidents with the concrete skills they need to take their career to the next level, drive business projects, and promote female leadership in journalism. As a community, Chicas Poderosas offers women working in the media a support network that functions as a space to exchange knowledge and experiences, and provide access to opportunities to develop their careers. Chicas Poderosas is also changing the narrative to transform the world, promoting spaces for the creation of collaborative journalism projects.

About the Knight Center

The Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas was created in 2002 by Professor Rosental Alves, Knight Chair of Journalism at the Moody College of Communication at the University of Texas, thanks to the generous donations of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. The Knight Center’s distance learning program began in 2003 and is funded in part by the Knight Foundation. Over the past six years, the Knight Center MOOCs have reached more than 200,000 people in 200 countries and territories.

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