Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 49.23
Liaison Maria Dahmus
Submission Date June 21, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of St. Thomas
IN-25: Innovation B

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Name or title of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome:
Under-Told Stories Project

A brief description of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome that outlines how credit criteria are met and any positive measurable outcomes associated with the innovation:

The Under-Told Stories Project is a collaboration between the University of St. Thomas and the PBS NewsHour to highlight the work of social entrepreneurs who are improving lives around the world. The project produces high-quality, multimedia reporting for public and commercial news outlets on a range of topics including the environment, food security, and global health, among others. The Under-Told Stories Project engages students in courses, internships and mentoring opportunities, providing a forum for the critical reflection on the world’s under-reported news stories, and hands-on skills in media production.

Fred de Sam Lazaro, a PBS correspondent since 1985, created the Under-Told Stories Project in 2006 at St. John’s University in Collegeville, Minnesota, and the project subsequently found a home at St. Mary’s University in Winona, Minnesota, before relocating at St. Thomas in 2016. He has reported from 68 countries.

De Sam Lazaro produces about 20 stories a year for the PBS NewsHour, and those stories are integrated into the curriculum. During the 2017-18 academic year, 15 St. Thomas classes across 10 departments used his stories to spark discussions or create case studies. St. Thomas is a new Ashoka Changemaker campus, and efforts consequently will be made to blend de Sam Lazaro's stories with efforts to evolve a culture of social innovation at the other 40 Ashoka schools.

His goal is to pursue what he calls “solutions-based journalism” that advances the common good – an aspiration that nicely meshes with St. Thomas’ mission to educate students "to be morally responsible leaders who think critically, act wisely and work skillfully to advance the common good."

Which of the following impact areas does the innovation most closely relate to? (select up to three):
Public Engagement

A letter of affirmation from an individual with relevant expertise or a press release or publication featuring the innovation :

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

The Under-Told Stories Project is led by Executive Director, Fred de Sam Lazaro.

The Under-Told Stories Project is led by Executive Director, Fred de Sam Lazaro.

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.